Ford’s 2018 Shelby GT500 Mustang could be the first ever to lose its V8 heart

Ford-Mustang_Shelby_GT500 front angle
When you think of the Shelby GT500 Mustang, a few images appear: tire-smoking power, flared / aggressive bodywork, racing stripes, and a boisterous V8. If a recent report from Automobile Magazine proves true, only three of those things will remain in the next generation of Ford’s Shelby GT500 ‘Stang, due out in late 2017 as a 2018 model year.

The new Ford GT made the switch from a supercharged V8 engine to a 3.5-liter twin-turbocharged V6 to save weight and compete in Le Mans, and now the GT500 Mustang could borrow its powertrain. Ford’s 5.8-liter supercharged V8 was tuned to 662 horsepower in 2013 – an outrageous figure before the Hellcat twins appeared on the market – but Ford Performance looks very different even just two years later.

With a new focus on lightweight construction and smaller, turbocharged engines, the highest performance Ford models, like the new Focus RS, redesigned F-150 SVT Raptor, and the aforementioned Ford GT have all been designed with handling, and better power-to-weight ratios, and efficiency in mind.

If the 2018 Shelby GT500 embrace a turbocharged V6 powertrain, it will be the first to shun the tradition of a V8-powered GT500 Mustang since it was introduced in 1967. That won’t make purists happy, but it might turn the GT500 into far more than a drag strip champion.

This of course begs the question as to whether that proposed formula deviates too far from the GT500’s original purpose, which was to be the king of muscle cars.

The new Shelby GT350 with its 5.0-liter flat plane crank V8 is certainly a step in the handling-prioritized direction, but a 600-plus HP twin-turbo V6-powered GT500 would weigh even less, and if it borrows the suspension tuning, brakes, and aerodynamic bits from its GT350 sibling, the new GT500 could become the best track car Ford has built yet.

If Ford pulls the trigger, V8 lovers will unleash their wrath, but the performance community might have a better shot at surviving in the wake of stricter environmental regulations.


Ford’s new Shelby GT500 Mustang will have 3D-printed brake parts

Ford's new $45 million Advanced Manufacturing Center will focus on emerging technologies, including 3D printing. One of the staff's first jobs is to print parts for the 700-horsepower Shelby GT500 Mustang.

Nissan and Italdesign’s GT-R50 concept will become a $1.1 million reality

The Nissan GT-R50 is a customized sports car built to celebrate the 50th anniversaries of both the GT-R and design firm Italdesign. Underneath the sleek bodywork sits a 710-horsepower engine fortified with race car components.

600-hp, $155K Polestar 1 is the alluring Volvo coupe you’ve been waiting for

Volvo's return to the coupe segment just took an interesting turn: the model will join the Polestar lineup, and it will get a 600-hp plug-in hybrid powertrain. The Polestar 1 will be built in China starting in 2019.
Smart Home

Is old-school Airstream finally embracing smart home technology?

Airstream's vintage-looking trailers have a huge audience but its 2019 Classic camping trailers are getting a modern upgrade with the addition of app-controlled smart home technology to bring modern convenience online.

Did that car just wink at you? Daimler previews car-to-pedestrian signals

Eager to show off progress with autonomous cars and perhaps do some consumer softening as well, Daimler and Bosch previewed car-to-pedestrian communications. A sensor-loaded Mercedes S appears to wink to acknowledge a pedestrian's presence.

Uber is about to restart self-driving car tests but on a reduced scale

Uber is reported to be on the verge of restarting its autonomous-car test program. The company halted it in March 2018 following a fatal accident involving one of its vehicles, but its cars could be back on the road within weeks.

Car-branded phones need to make a U-turn if they ever want to impress

Your car and your smartphone are becoming one, yet smartphones branded or co-created by car companies are a problem. We look at the history, some examples of the best and worst, then share hopes for the future.

Bosch is developing a Rosetta Stone for autonomous and connected cars

Bosch and start-up Veniam want to create a common language that autonomous and connected cars can use. The two firms have developed a connectivity unit that transcends the national boundaries of technology.

Aston Martin bets classic car owners will choose volts over carburetors

Aston Martin has converted one of its most sought-after classic models to run on electricity instead of gasoline. The roadster uses electric components sourced from the upcoming Rapide E sedan.

Volkswagen may be planning a tougher challenge for its all-electric I.D. R

The Volkswagen I.D. R electric race car may head to the Nürburgring in 2019 for a lap-record attempt, according to a new report. Volkswagen will reportedly aim to set the quickest lap time ever by an electric car.

The Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake is the sexiest wagon ever

Aston Martin has revealed new photos of the limited-production Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake. The Vanquish Zagato line now includes the Shooting Brake, Coupe, Volante, and Speedster, each with bespoke styling.
Product Review

Audi built an electric SUV for buyers who want gasoline-free to mean stress-free

We finally got to spend time behind the wheel of the electric 2019 Audi E-Tron bustling cities and arid desert of the United Arab Emirates to see how it compares with Jaguar and Tesla's competitors.

World’s fastest electric race car to display at Petersen Museum

The Volkswagen I.D. R Pikes Peak race car smashed the all-time record at the hill climb for which it was named. The all-electric VW record-holder will be on display at the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles until February 1, 2019.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Folding canoes and ultra-fast water filters

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!