Modern Art Monday: The Mk IV GT40

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What else can be said about the legendary Ford Mk IV GT40? We all recognize its beauty and we all know the significance behind it. After all, this car along with the rest of the GT40 program helped put American motor sports on the map. Its only purpose was to beat European manufacturers on their home turf (namely Ferrari), and as a result of its success, the GT40 secured a solid place in history books as well as in the hearts of millions of enthusiasts around the world.

The Mk IV in particular was introduced in 1967 and won both races it was entered in that year, the 12 Hours of Sebring and the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The red #1 car you see here is the same one driven to victory in the 1967 24 Hours of Le Mans by none other than Dan Gurney and A.J. Foyt – you can even see the “Gurney Bubble” in the following photos – so imagine the surprise when redditor Nachtmensch got photos from a mate showing the priceless racecar , just 1 of 6 ever produced, being loaded off a cargo plane at Chicago O’Hare International Airport. Talk about a special delivery. Fortunately, like a true redditor, he kindly shared the photos which can be seen past the jump. 

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You can get a clear view of the “Gurney Bubble” here. Because of details like that and the pristine condition it’s in, redditors in the original comment thread unanimously believe it’s authentic and is the same one on display at The Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Michigan.

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Source: Reddit user Nachtmensch| Image source: Imgur – full resolution photos are also available there.

17 Comments

  1. Magnificent! These photos gave me goosebumps. When I first learned of the Gurney Bubble, for some reason I used to call it the Gurney Bump. Not the same thing. Thank you for this post!

    1. Howdy stranger!
      I thought I might find someone I knew here, but with my last comment on Hooniverse being 46 weeks ago apparently, I wasn't sure if I'd recognize anyone else. Glad to see I'm amongst good people though!

    2. Thanks for reading! I knew either your or engineerd would be the first to comment and you didn't disappoint 😉

  2. I'm assuming it was in Chicago for the auto show?
    Every time I go to the Henry Ford Museum I make sure to stop and stare at the GT40. Seeing these in the flesh is almost a religious experience for me.

  3. Wow, amazing. Makes you wonder how aware the guys that loaded and unloaded it were of its importance and significance. I'll bet the museum had a caretaker that stayed with it wherever it went.

  4. recently did a job with a low slung car (still confidential till March), and the shipping company sent their specialist from Holland to South America just to oversee the proper loading of the car on the same skids as in the picture. It was very hard to move it aboard due to the small amount of ground clearance. I can only imagine how hard this Ford must have been, plus the historical and monetary value of this car being much higher.

  5. One sad thing about this old race car is that it is now too precious to be driven.Built to race and now just an exhibit.

    1. Really depends on the owner. I have a friend with a Mk1 GT40, a Ferrari TdF, 375MM and he drives the crap out of them. Has even offered me a chance to drive them…
      …but I'm too tall 🙁
      Oh and he just bought a MkIV GT40 🙂

  6. That is one of my favorite exhibits at the Henry Ford. They tuck it off in the corner, somewhere near the Mustang I prototype. Hardly anyone is ever back that far to look at it.

  7. When I saw the lead photo I about swallowed my tongue, so beautiful. The MK IV and the Saturn moon rocket are the best expressions of American engineering from the '60s. Both embody the phrase, "If it looks right, it is right."

  8. This will very likely be at Amelia Island as part of the 50th anniversary celebration of the Ford GT during March 8-10. There will also be a symposium about the GT that has listed speakers as John Horsman (John Wyer Racing), Brian Redman, Lee Holman of Holman and Moody, and David Hobbs. Highly recommended for anyone who will be in the area.

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