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The Shelby GT350 is here!

The Shelby GT350 is here!

Today, Ford unveiled the track-ready 2015 Shelby GT350, which includes an all-new flat plane 5.2L V8 engine, along with hundreds of other enhancements. Oh, and it looks amazing, too.

All-New 5.2L V8

For the 2015 Shelby GT350, Ford developed a brand new engine. Rumors swirled about the "Voodoo" 5.2L V8 forthcoming. Those rumors were true. The new GT350 is coming with a flat plane 5.2L V8. This high revving engine is naturally aspirated and features a flat plane crankshaft, which is an architecture that's typically found in racing applications and high-end exotic cars.

Unlike a traditional V8, where the connecting rods are attached to the crankshaft at 90-degree intervals, the new Voodoo engine evenly spaces out all of the crank pins at 180-degree intervals. This allows for a cylinder firing order that alternates between cylinder banks, which reduces the overlap of exhaust pressure pulses. This allows for better cylinder breathing, especially when combined with all of the other cylinder head and valvetrain advancements that are included on this engine.

Of course, the big question is, "how much power?" No specifics have been released yet, but Ford's saying that the new GT350 is going to have more than 500 horsepower and 400 ft./lb. of peak torque with a broad torque curve.

2015 Shelby GT350

Exterior Design

While the engine may be a highlight, Ford has made many, many other changes to get this Shelby GT350 ready for the track. To start, the foundation of the new GT350 is riding on the strongest Mustang platform ever. However, Ford took that structure a step forward by increasing the stiffness with a cutting edge injection molded carbon fiber composite grille opening and an optional lightweight tower-to-tower brace. The track has also been increased, and the GT350's been lowered with recalibrated spring rates and bushings. New MagneRide dampers allow for near-instant suspension adjustments. This is thanks to the fact that they're filled with hydraulic fluid that is impregnated with iron particles that, when hit with an electrical current, allows for amazingly fast adjustments.

The Shelby GT350 receives brand-new 19-inch aluminum alloy wheels...they're 10.5-inches wide in the front and 11-inches in the back. These wheels are wrapped in custom Michelin Pilot Super Sport tires with GT350 specific sidewall construction.

Every body panel from the windshield forward is all-new and is designed to improve performance on the car. The hood's been lowered and sloped for a better aerodynamic signature, while the front splitter now looks more aggressive and features a design that delivers significant downforce. The hood outlet extracts heat and reduces underhood lift at high speeds. On the rear of the GT350, the diffuser was designed to look aggressive, while also increasing downforce and providing cool air to the differential cooler. A lip spoiler on the edge of the trunk lid also increases downforce without adding excess drag.

New aluminum front fenders were added to accentuate the wider stance, while also incorporating vents that draw out turbulent air in the wheel wells and direct it down the sides of the car. The new grille features a more forward angle with individual openings for the radiator, intake, and cooling for the front brakes. An optional Track Pack includes an engine cooler and transmission cooler.

Speaking of the brakes, the new GT350 includes two-piece cross-drilled iron discs that are mounted to aluminum hats. The fronts are 394 millimeter rotors with six-piston Brembo calipers, while the rear brakes utilize 380 millimeter rotors and four-piston calipers.

2015 Shelby GT350

Interior Design

While much of the attention was focused on the exterior, the inside didn't go unnoticed. Specially designed Recaros are standard, which feature unique cloth and more comfort for the driver during extended races. The steering wheel is a flat-bottomed model that makes it easier for drivers to get in and out of the car, plus is easier to use on the track. Gauges are updated to reflect the performance that this track car is truly capable of, while materials have been changed to reduce sun glare that might distract a driver.

The GT350 also includes a brand new integrated driver control system, which allows for five unique modes to be selected that tailor the ABS, stability control, traction control, steering offer, throttle mapping, MagneRide tuning and exhaust settings for maximum performance based upon conditions and driver preferences.

An available Tech Pack adds more comfort and convenience items to the car, including power everything, leather, Shaker audio, MyFord Touch and dual zone climate control.

After seeing all of these new racing oriented features throughout this incredible car, the new Shelby GT350 is definitely what Mustang racers are looking for. These advancements should make it amazing on the track, and we can't wait to see how it performs. No pricing or official release date is available yet, so stay tuned.

2015 Shelby GT350

Source: Ford Media

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