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Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Car News: 2016 Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 Debuts with Flat-Crank V-8 and MagneRide Shocks!

The GT350 is back, baby. The last factory
Ford Mustang to wear the vaunted badge
disappeared nearly a half-century ago;
based on the Mustang GT, it was a street-
legal track weapon produced in
partnership with Carroll Shelby. Ol’ Shel
may now be gone, but the ties between
his name and Ford’s pony car are as
strong as ever. And the new GT350, which
picks up where the original GT350 and the
2013 Boss 302 left off, may be the best-ever
example of the breed.
The outgoing GT500 , the most recent
Mustang with a Shelby badge, was all
about violent, face-flattening velocity,
teaming 662 bombastic, supercharged
horses with a solid rear axle. Ford’s
newest Shelby takes an entirely different
approach. For starters, it’s based on the
latest “S550” Mustang chassis, which
packs a fully independent rear
suspension. The GT350 builds on that with
Ford’s first suspension with
magnetorheological dampers, unique
bodywork that’s shaped for aerodynamics
first and everything else second, and a
naturally aspirated 5.2-liter V-8 with a
flat-plane crankshaft. It’s a thoroughly
modern pony built for racetracks with
apexes instead of those with burnout
boxes. (Ford isn’t abandoning that niche,
however, as a new GT500 is in the works .)
WE CAN’T COMPLAIN, IT’S ON A FLAT-
PLANE
The V-8 engine skips turbo- or
supercharging in favor of a sky-high
redline—there’s no official number yet,
but we’ve heard 8000-plus rpm—and that
fancy flat-plane crank, a trick favored by
Ferrari. For those unfamiliar, a flat
crankshaft design involves attaching the
crank pins at 180-degree intervals rather
than the usual 90; this allows for a firing
order that bounces back and forth
between the two cylinder banks,
providing evenly spaced exhaust pulses.
It’s all about better breathing, and it
results here, says Ford, in the most
powerful naturally aspirated engine the
company has ever produced. The
carmaker hasn’t yet released final output
ratings, but it does tell us to expect more
than 500 horsepower and 400 lb-ft of
torque. Hell. Yea!!. For comparison, the
Boss 302 made 444 horses and 380 lb-ft
from a naturally aspirated 5.0-liter V-8,
and the new Mustang GT gets 435 and 400
from its updated five-oh.
If there’s anything flat-crank engines are
known for beyond big revs and a bunch
of power, it’s their unique sound. On this
point, Ford promises we won’t be
disappointed: “Make no mistake, this is an
American interpretation of a flat-plane
crankshaft V-8, and the 5.2-liter produces
a distinctive, throaty howl.” Happily—
very, very happily—the engine can be
paired only with a six-speed manual.
Output is then routed to a standard-
equipment Torsen limited-slip
differential; a diff cooler can be ordered,
and it feeds on airflow directed from the
rear diffuser.
As mentioned, the new Shelby features
MagneRide, Ford’s first-ever application
of the continuously controlled
magnetorheological damping system. This
setup alters shock stiffness at each corner
independently every 10 milliseconds
based on the car’s yaw angle and
suspension load. The GT350 joins various
General Motors vehicles—including the
Corvette and the Camaro ZL1 —the Audi TT
and R8, and multiple Ferraris in offering
the technology. In the Shelby, the
suspension can be cycled through five
modes, which also control steering effort,
throttle sensitivity, the exhaust, and
programming of the ABS and traction-
and stability-control systems.

This ride doesn't come with an automatic transmission,  If you want an auto, you have no
business driving one of these. Go buy an SUV, or,
a minivan.

One heck of a ride I must confess!

Source: Car and Driver.

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