Hooniverse Asks: Is Ford A Legitimate Super Car Maker?

With the recently introduced second iteration of the GT, the Ford Motor Company has now offered the car buying public—or at least a very small but wealthy segment of them—the opportunity to own their interpretation of the V8 mid-engine hyper car.
Ford’s first dalliance with this sort of high-performance automobile came in the form of the GT40 MKIII, a 335-horsepower 4.7-litre monster with just enough civility to qualify for road duty. They built seven of those. The company waited nearly four decades to revisit the formula, and they didn’t stray very far form it either. The newly branded 2005 GT offered 550-bhp from supercharged 5.4-litre V8 and was hailed for its 200 MPH performance and nearly perfect retro-mod body. A little over 4,000 of those made their way into buyers’ hands. Now we have the new GT, a car that while reverent to its predecessors is also wildly original in both its look and how it gets its job done. This latest GT comes with a twin-turbo 3.5-litre V6 offering a remarkable 647-horses. The first production models will be released to their lucky—and rich—owners soon.
Okay, that’s three models and right now a total production of under 5,000 cars. And that’s from the same company that once wanted people to buy something called the Aspire, which was not inspirational at all. Ford also is the company that builds a ton of trucks, can they also be a Super Car company? 
Ferrari, Lamborghini, Porsche, even Mercedes Benz… these are all companies with the bonafides to build super cars, and they all have done so at one time or another. Still, as Volkswagen proved with the unloved Phaeton, the badge has meaning and whether or not a marque is legitimate or just a pretender has a lot to do with their overall corporate policy, and not just one-or three-cars. 
What do you think, is Ford 2 legit 2 quit? Can they rightfully take the title of super car maker?
Image: Ford Motor Company

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24 responses to “Hooniverse Asks: Is Ford A Legitimate Super Car Maker?”

    1. mdharrell Avatar

      The more complicated answer, extending from the Henry Ford Company to the Ford Motor Company, is still yes.

  1. nanoop Avatar

    Sure, when any backyard fabricator (Königsegg, Pagani) can, or even a British volume manufacturer (Jaguar XJ220) – all you need is a clean floor, white gloves, passionate people, and money. More money.

  2. 0A5599 Avatar

    You know who drives supercars? Superheroes.
    And Ford made the best one.

    1. tonyola Avatar

      How about this Supercar?

  3. Peter Tanshanomi Avatar

    The litmus test is the cars themselves, not the company. The original GT40 was, by any objective measure, state-of-the-art. The 2005-06 GT was arguably in the hunt with contemporary hypercars in terms of performance, technology and construction. The new model is certainly not embarrassed by comparison, either.
    Super is as super does.

    1. outback_ute Avatar

      Plus in both of the modern cases, people would have been signing up on the strength of the announcement, before details were released. That shows the market regards them as legit.

  4. Alff Avatar
  5. Borkwagen Avatar

    “their interpretation of the V8 mid-engine hyper car.”
    So with a V-6? I kinda know what you mean, but the mind boggles.

    1. Monkey10is Avatar

      All of you questioning whether a ttV-6 is a worthy successor; consider that this car was built firstly to win endurance races, with the road car coming second (the same as the original GT40, but the opposite of the normal present-day homologation route for its class).
      The endurance requirements forced aero and fuel-efficiency to the top of the list; to make sure of beating the established rivals Ford went for a radical body design — huge venturi channels through the bodywork (which results in an ‘intimate’ internal seating space) — and a fuel-sipping engine (the compact V6 also helped to clear as much space at the rear of the car as possible for the venturis).
      I am sure that every Ford dealer has pointed out to Dearborn that they would sell more of these if it had a big rumbling V8 (or V10, or V12 …choose your own adventure) and even through Ford has suitable engines in the range that would have meant re-engineering the whole tub, bodywork, suspension geometry, packaging etc.. By staying with the race version’s V6 the car is perhaps compromised in an on-paper comparo with rivals, but more honest to it’s development and — I would argue — more honest to the heritage of the GT40.

      1. Borkwagen Avatar

        Don’t misunderstand, as a fan of the Jaguar XJ220 I don’t mind V6 supercars. My beef was more with the wording of the article.

        1. anonymic Avatar

          It’s a shame they copped that engine off the 6R4 instead of something more interesting. It was interesting in the Metro because insanity, but the XJ, I think would have been better suited with a 4-valve twin or quad turbo V-12. At least it would have been their engine, though XJ250 doesn’t leave a whole lot of room for growth either.

          1. outback_ute Avatar

            The original prototype that was shown at motor shows and that generated a lot of orders had a n/a V12 of course, and AWD. They changed to the turbo V6 because it was better.

      2. outback_ute Avatar

        The original GT40 was in the prototype class though, not GT, so homologation was entirely different with no road cars required. I’d consider that Ford went about things the wrong way for GT class.

  6. JayP Avatar

    Ford’s Voodoo should have been in the GT.

  7. ptschett Avatar

    If a supercar from noted taxicab, company lease car and commercial-van purveyor Mercedes would be legitimate, why not a Ford?

    1. P161911 Avatar

      Only 1 of those three apply to M-B in the US. They have made inroads into the van market, but really only after they sold off Chrysler. The Sprinter proved popular and they kept selling it as a Mercedes after Dodge quit selling them.

  8. Harry Callahan Avatar
    Harry Callahan


  9. Jakub Kdzirski Avatar
    Jakub Kdzirski

    Technicly the new GT is designed by Ford Performance, a division, which isn’t directly connected with the general brand. It is also worth noting that the GT isn’t actually made in a Ford factory. The car is actually made in Canada, by a company that specialises in building race cars. So in my humble opinion Ford is not a supercar brand.

    1. outback_ute Avatar

      Does it say Ford Performance or just Ford on the title/ID plate? The blue oval badge doesn’t have “Performance” underneath it, so it certainly seems pretty closely connected!

    2. cap'n fast Avatar
      cap’n fast

      well, you silly! it was/is ford’s money that built the car. the word FORD is slathered all over it. FORD is on the paperwork.
      like a maserati doesn’t have a ferrari engine in it? does that make a maserati not a maserati???

      1. nanoop Avatar

        As I stated above: you need clean floors, gloves, passionate people, and money.
        The clean floor location is irrelevant, just look at the “German” car manufacturing sites across the world. Passionate people are everywhere, it’s just to attract those with .
        Money determines what’s written on the nose, and it hasn’t to be the money’s name, necessarily – I haven’t seen a car labelled “Porsche Automobil Holding SE” yet, but I hear they’re making both granny’s grocery getters and a selection of super- and hypercars.

      2. Fresh-Outta-Nissans Avatar

        I can’t make head or tail of your wording.
        Until then: Maseratis have Ferrari engines the same way Ford GTs have truck engines.

  10. Krautwursten Avatar

    Regardless I think the new GT is unfitting for the brand and an underwhelming product compared to the 2004 GT. In 2004 they set out to hunt down supercars in something that’s comparatively affordable and powered by comparatively conventional technology. It’s the whole “American working class takes on European aristocracy” thing condensed in car form. And that’s why it worked. The new GT is more complicated and more expensive than some of the European supercars. Is it a good supercar? Probably. Is it a good Ford? Not really.