The 2020 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 is a towering achievement for Ford's engineers: Page 2 of 5

Ford's fastest-ever Mustang shows the value in carefully tuning even the best parts to get the most from them.
Image source: Ford Motor Co.

The previous GT500 and the Challenger variants all feature some impressive hardware, but it was seemingly not the right impressive hardware, or the pieces weren’t correctly integrated to produce the desired result. The 2020 GT500 is properly sorted and does produce the desired result, thanks to hard engineering work on the details.

It accomplishes that with a track wing aero package that produces as much as 550 lbs. of downforce at the rear of the car at 180 mph. Careful aerodynamic tuning at the Windshear rolling road wind tunnel in North Carolina ensured stable aerodynamic characteristics, while PowerFLOW computational fluid dynamics software from Dassault Systèmes modeled the cooling necessary for an engine producing this much power.

Image source: Ford Motor Co.

Indeed, Krenz reminds us that while the GT500’s net power rating is 760 hp, at redline, its 2.65-liter Eaton Roots-type supercharger is consuming about 100 hp, so the engine is actually creating 860 horsepower, and needs to shed a corresponding amount of heat.

That’s what the car does, with a front opening that twice the size of that in the Shelby GT350, which lets the GT500 expel more than 230 kilowatts of heat. Much of that vents through a central vent in the hood that measures 6 square feet. Even with that ventilation, air pressure beneath the hood is so high that the hood was visibly lifting an inch during high-speed runs, so they added locking hood pins to secure it separately from the regular latch.

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