One of Ford's most iconic GT40 racecars is undergoing a comprehensive restoration in time for the 2016 Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance.
- Autoblog Staff
- Jun 14, 2015
A new bill would make it possible for small companies to sell a small number of turn-key replica cars in the United States each year. Here are a few of the coolest.
Ford dominated the 24 Hours of Le Mans from 1966 to 1969, scoring four consecutive wins. Wouldn't it be great if the Blue Oval could go back to France for the 50th anniversary of that performance and show it can still compete in international endurance racing? Actually, the latest rumors indicate that could be exactly the case, and the car taking that checkered flag could be another revival of the Ford GT.
Here's a Pro Tip for all you would-be classic car investors out there: buy Ferraris. With the Pebble Beach festivities kicking off this week, including any number high end car auctions, we thought it would be entertaining to compile a list of some to the most expensive cars ever sold with the bang of a gavel. Trouble is, once you get past the splendor of everyone's favorite Italian sports car maker, that list is pretty boring.
Think of mid-engined supercars and your mind is bound to gravitate towards Europe, but the United States has been known to make a handful from time to time – exceptional vehicles from the likes of Vector, SSC, Mosler, Hennessey, and Saleen. But long before any of those came around, Ford famously became obsessed with beating Ferrari at its own game, leading to the development of the iconic GT40.
You might expect a rare Ford GT40 to cross the block at some sort of prestigious auto auction from RM or Gooding, not show up on eBay for over $2 million. However, that's exactly what we have here. The seller claims the car is a late-build Mk1 GT40 from 1969, and it's currently owned by the director of the Hublot watch company in Switzerland.
Seven-figure Ferraris are not horribly rare. Heck, an eight-figure Ferrari isn't a rare occurrence. Between modern masterpieces like the Enzo and more classic offerings, cracking the million-dollar mark isn't a particularly tall order for the cars from Maranello. For a Ford, though, it's a big deal.
Ten years ago, during the bright-eyed enthusiasm of the early 2000s and before the collective automotive industry did its best Titanic impression, we had the Ford GT. An everyman's supercar like there'd never been (remember, this was before 638-horsepower Corvettes were a thing), the GT arrived with a supercharged, 5.4-liter V8 that produced 550 horsepower and graced this retro-styled rocket with an easy, sub-four-second sprint to 60 miles per hour.
The Ford GT40 owns a firm spot on the list of the greatest American racecars ever made, being the first car from the United States to take an overall win in the 24 Hours of Le Mans. And now Mecum will auction what it claims is second-oldest GT40 still in existence at its Houston sale on April 12.
Is there a more iconic, American racecar than the Ford GT40? That may be a discussion for another day (although by all means, tell us how wrong we are in Comments), but this video of heaps of GT40s running in the Goodwood Revival races certainly has us thinking that Ford's Ferrari-killer might just be the best racer the Land Of The Free and Home Of The Brave has ever come up with.
In what presenters describe as the "biggest and best historic motor racing party of the year," the Goodwood Revival features famous cars, famous drivers and a racetrack. Combine the three and you've got a bloody-good weekend. Watching a peerless assortment of vintage racecars go round the track from the grandstands is good fun, but what's it like watching from the drivers' perspectives?