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The AutoGuide News Blog is your source for breaking stories from the auto industry. Delivering news immediately, the AutoGuide Blog is constantly updated with the latest information, photos and video from manufacturers, auto shows, the aftermarket and professional racing.
The first 2012 Global RallyCross Championship took place this past weekend, and the Ford race team took home the two top spots.
PowerBlock TV will be putting the Factory Five Mk4 Roadster to the test against the original 427 Shelby Cobra. In celebration of that, they are also doing a sweepstakes with the winner getting themselves a do-it-yourself Factory Five Mk4 Roadster kit.
The lucky sweepstakes winner will get an Mk4 chassis and suspension package from Factory Five, a Ford 5.0-liter Coyote powerplant with a six-speed transmission, $5,000 in tools and shop equipment from Matco Tools and Summit Racing Equipment, Weld Racing wheels, Falken Tires and goodies like Royal Purple lubricants. The complete package has an estimated retail value of over $50,000.
PowerBlockTV calls it the ultimate do-it-yourself package. Nothing would be better than having someone essentially sponsor you to build an Mk4 Cobra replica. Click here to enter.
The Ford Focus ST-R will make its racing debut at Daytona International Speedway this coming Friday in the Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge ST class. Although the car resembles the stock Ford Focus, it has been purposefully designed by Ford Racing to be a track ready car.
The Focus ST-R will feature Ford’s 2.0L Ecoboost engine, a full FIA approved roll cage, updated brakes and track-tuned suspension to set it apart from the stock Focus and Focus ST models. The ST-R was developed by a partnership between Ford Racing and Multimatic Motorsports, who have a history together developing the performance line of Mustangs. “Having delivered the successful Mustang FR500C and Boss 302R production-based race cars, we have a well-established process with how to develop such cars with Ford Racing. We employ the same approach for each – we start with the production car and go through each subsystem on the car and change what is needed (and allowed) to provide a competitive race car,” said Larry Holt, the team principal at Multimatic Motorsports.
The Focus ST-R joins quite a few turnkey ready racers from Ford, it stands along side the likes of the Mustang FR500C, Mustang FR500S, Mustang Cobra Jet, Boss 302R and Boss 302S, all of which are available to order for the professional racer and amateur enthusiast alike. The director of Ford racing, Jamie Allison said “People who buy one will get a fully prepared race car that will only need communications equipment and the customer’s decals to go racing. Because of this, we’ve already had significant interest in this vehicle from numerous established race teams.”
Ford is making a push into the racing world with the Fusion running in NASCAR and the RallyCross racing Fiesta, with the Focus ST-R being the newest addition to Ford’s strategy to support motor sports development.
110 years ago, Henry Ford entered a 10-lap, 10-mile race at the Detroit Driving Club in Grosse Point, Michigan in his self-built race car called “Sweepstakes”. Going up against heavily-favored Alexander Winton, Henry Ford took the surprising win that ultimately changed automotive manufacturing forever. With his win, the Ford Motor Company got the funding it needed to launch less than two years later. At this year’s SEMA Show, Ford is celebrating its 110 years of racing heritage by bringing some of its most iconic race cars to the huge convention.
The star lineup will include Ford’s Le-Mans winning 1967 GT40 MkIV (pictured), Parnelli Jones’ 1970 Mustang Boss 302, Jim Clark’s Lotus (winner of the 1965 Indy 500), various John Force Funny Cars and this year’s Daytona 500 winner. These are just a few of the race cars Ford will be representing with, and we expect to see more given Ford’s success in various forms of motorsports including the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the Baja 1000, X Games Rallycross, Rally Great Britain and the Bathhurst 1000.
Keep your eye out for AutoGuide’s extensive SEMA 2011 coverage where we’ll be sure to check out all of the historic race cars that will be representing over a century of Ford racing heritage.
And check out AutoGuide’s complete 2011 SEMA Show preview here.
Ford is giving racing enthusiasts a new Focus race car option with their ST-R that debuted at Frankfurt Motor Show. The Focus ST-R race car will feature a powerful 2.0L EcoBoost engine, FIA regulation roll cage, upgraded brakes and track-tuned suspension.
The race-tweaked, production-based ST-R was crafted by the engineers at Ford Racing and will be allowed to compete in a variety of racing series including Grand-Am ST, World Challenge TC and Canadian Touring Car Series. Ford also hopes that teams will pick up the ST-R and use it at notable race events such as the 24 Hours of Nurburgring.
Initially created for American and Canadian touring car racing, the ST-R is available for order from Ford dealers in North America for all race car enthusiasts from seasoned veterans to weekend amateurs.
Because the Focus ST-R is a production-based road race car, it features stock body panels and production parts where possible,” added Allison. “People who buy one will get will get a fully prepared race car that will only need communications equipment and the customer’s decals to go racing. We’ve already had significant interest in this vehicle from numerous established race teams.”
No pricing was announced from Ford’s official press release.
GALLERY: Ford Focus ST-R Race Car
With their team of star drivers behind them, Ford is launching the Octane Academy that will bring their ultimate fans face to face with their favorite action sports driver. The all-star cast of Ken Block, Tanner Foust, Vaughn Gittin Jr. and Brian Deegan will be hosting four different camps throughout the year, one by each driver. At each camp, contestants that are selected through video submissions will get to go head-to-head in testing their driving skills.
Each driver will design their own playground, allowing participants to experience out-of-this-world driving lessons while being recorded for the Octane Academy series. And participants that compete to the level that each driver is satisfied with, will win prizes including an overall grand prize of a one-off vehicle created by each of the drivers.
Those interested in entering to possibly become a participant will need to do a video submission telling their story of why they think they have what it takes to survive in the crazy world of Ford’s top tier drivers. The first camp will be hosted by Deegan in November and will feature the theme of Ford RallyCross and Off-Road truck racing. Drivers will get to participate in a Ford F-150 SVT Raptor. Those wanting to meet up with Block, will get to get behind the wheel of a Ford Fiesta in probably a Gymkhana-themed academy. No doubt Gittin Jr. will get his participants amped up and behind the wheel of a Ford Mustang looking to go sideways. Lastly, Foust will be able to train his drivers in a Ford Focus with an X-Games inspired theme.
Check out a video announcing the Ford Octane Academy after the break.
Ford Racing is now offering a 302 5.0L V8 crate engine from the truly awesome B0ss 302 Mustang. The fully-built crate engine comes with 11.0:1 compression ratio forged aluminum pistons, a lightweight aluminum cylinder block, a large sump 8.5-qt oil pan, revised composite intake system with shorter runners, 80-mm single bore drive-by-wire throttle body, ported cylinder heads with sodium-filled exhaust valves and sinter-forged connecting rods. The complete longblock is good for 444-hp.
Some wiring must be done as the vehicle harness and PCM is not included. A manual transmission engine harness and flywheel are included however. The engine weighs in at 444-lbs and options include Ford’s blue coil pack covers and NVH insulator pads. Those interested in the crate engine, the part # is M-6007-M50B.
Pricing is steep at $11,999 – a $5,000 premium over a regular 5.0L V8 crate motor.
[Source: Mustangs Daily]
When it comes to Ford Mustang performance and forced induction, superchargers are definitely at the top of the list. There’s just nothing better than accentuating the natural torque of a V8 than pairing it up with a brilliantly designed supercharger. Ford Racing wasted no time on the 2011 Ford Mustang’s 5.0L V8 TiVCT motor and has just announced a twin-screw supercharger setup for the vehicle.
The supercharger is a 2.3L twin-screw setup and helps the Mustang put down 624-hp and 536 ft-lbs of torque. That is a very nice increase from the factory 412-hp and 390 ft-lbs of torque. “Superchargers are the ultimate in power upgrades for Mustang enthusiasts,” George Goddu, Ford Racing Performance Group Manager said.
Those looking for a nice increase without the overpowering 600+ figure can opt for a 525-hp kit with a 12 month, 12,000 mile warranty. And in addition to the mid-level 624-hp kit is a tuner kit for racing and extreme enthusiasts. No horsepower figures were released for that kit, but we’re guessing it’s pretty extreme.
Costs range from $6,499 for black to $8,099 for polished chrome. Naturally Ford Racing didn’t release what the supercharger does in terms of hampering mpg, but they were nice enough to share that the kit adds 47 lbs to the car. We’re going to guess that’s not exactly noticeable with the globs of horsepower that comes with it.
[Source: Car Tech Blog]
Ford recently announced it would sell the new 5.0-liter V8 engine in the 2011 Mustang GT in crate form for do-it-yourself power freaks. Now, Ford Racing has upped the offering by putting the 2011 Shelby GT500‘s supercharged 5.4-liter on the list.
Making 550-hp and 6200 rpm and 510 ft-lbs of torque at 4,250 rpm, the 717-lb engine retails for a not-insignificant $20,999. That weight doesn’t sound like a little amount either, but it’s the biggest improvement to the 2011 GT500 engine, using an aluminum block and weighing far less than last year’s version.
Get more info at the link below:
Ford‘s Mustang Challenge series will come to an end later this year after the final race at Miller Motorsports Park in Utah this September. The Mustang Challenge, which started in 2007, didn’t have a long life, but the FR500S will still be eligible to race in other series.
No official reason was given for the series’ cancellation, but Series Director Lynda Randall said ”We are disappointed to not continue what we started with the Mustang Challenge,”but we should hold our heads high, as this was a tremendously successful program and we were fortunate to get to be a part of what really became a family. Our drivers raced hard during the day and tended to laugh hard–together–when they were out of the cars. We will miss the great mixture of competition and camaraderie, as well as the great racing, that we came to love in Mustang Challenge. This was not the decision that we wanted to have to make, but we wanted to let our racers know what the future held and we want to close the year out with some very big races at Autobahn and of course at Miller.”
[Source: Mustang Blog]
Looking to own a true, one-of-a-kind Ford Mustang collectible? Well, this one is gonna cost ya. RM Auctions is offering the 2004 Ford Mustang GT-R Concept, originally introduced at the 2004 New York International Auto Show as a tribute to 40 years of Mustang performance. A custom built Mustang with performance and race-inspiration in mind, RM Auctions is estimating that the GT-R concept will sell for $250,000 to $350,000.
For a vehicle that’s neither DOT nor EPA certified, that’s a pretty penny to pay for a track-only car, or something to sit in your show garage. But what the lucky owner will get is a Valencia Orange painted 2004 Mustang sporting a high compression, fully built 440-hp powerplant. Mated to a TTC T-56 six-speed transmission.
Inside the entire chassis has been overhauled with a full roll cage, Sparco racing seats and stripped to its bare necessities. Suspension upgrades include coilovers with remote reservoirs, ready to hit the track. 20-inch wheels are found on each corner, wrapped with Pirelli slicks with Brembo brakes peeking behind the classic five-spoke design.
Lastly on the outside is an abundance of carbon fiber components giving the car a more aggressive look while improving aerodynamics.
So you have a hole burning in your pocket?
GALLERY: 2004 Ford Mustang GT-R Concept
As Ford Racing just announced, they will be supplying 43 Fiestas to the Team O’Neil Rally School in New Hampshire in order to create the Fiesta Rally School. The O’Neil Rally School will outfit each Fiesta with a roll bar, rally suspension, and off-road tires so that aspiring rally drivers can safely learn the Scandinavian flick and other sideways rally driving techniques.
This partnership further solidifies Ford‘s commitment to using the new Fiesta as their global rally car in 2011 and beyond, where it’ll be seen running in the FIA World Rally Championship and in Rally America with highly skilled hoonage provided by the likes of DC Shoes headman and rallying driver extraordinaire Ken Block.
The 43 donor Fiestas are being repurposed from the 100 European-spec versions that arrived in North America for the Fiesta Movement. The Ford Racing Fiesta Rally Experience will be the only rally experience offered by a manufacturer in North America, which combined with the Ford Racing School of High Performance Driving at Miller Motorsports Park in Utah gives the blue oval an impressive motorsports presence on both sides of the country.
“Ford Racing Fiesta Rally Experience will provide consumers with the opportunity to experience Fiesta in a true rally environment,” said John Felice, general manager, Ford and Lincoln Marketing. “From learning how to drive high-performance Mustangs on the track at Miller Motorsports to driving a Fiesta on a rally road course at Team O’Neil, these driving schools allow consumers to experience our products in unique and different environments.”
“The opportunity to find a second life for nearly half of the cars from the Fiesta Movement is a way to keep alive the legacy these cars have brought to the Fiesta launch in North America,” said Jamie Allison, director, Ford North America Motorsports. “Fiesta’s nimble driving dynamics and precise handling attributes make it a perfect fit to serve as a rally school car at Team ONeil.”
“Our philosophy at Team O’Neil is to teach drivers how to master front-wheel drive in order to keep speed in the corners, accelerate through the corners, and use the brake to make a turn,” said Tim O’Neil, five-time U.S. and North America rally racing champion. “Fiesta is a strong, light, front-wheel-drive car. The addition of Ford Racing-developed performance parts including an rally suspension, underbody protection and roll bar gives us a great future with these cars.”
For more information on Ford Racing Fiesta Rally Experience and to register, go to www.teamoneil.com
If you’re a weekend racer dreaming of moving up to a Pro series, here’s your chance. Thanks to the Ford Racing Mustang Challenge and BFGoodrich Tires, you could win a seat in a Mustang Challenge race simply by entering their contest at http://mustangchallenge.com/drivershootout/
The Mustang Challenge Driver Shootout will put one driver behind the wheel for the season-finale Mustang Challenge race at Miller Motorsports Park on September 11. The Mustang Challenge Shootout mixes talent, new media savvy, and the drive to win to give one driver the chance of a lifetime. All you have to do to enter the contest is upload a video demonstrating why you’re a good candidate to race in the Mustang Challenge. Drivers can use videos that have been posted on BFGoodrich’s Nation of Go, YouTube, or a video site of their choice.
Entries are already being accepted, with the deadline for filing an entry being the checkered flag for round nine of the 2010 Mustang Challenge season at Autobahn Speedway (August 1st). From the submitted videos, five entrants will be selected as final contestants.
From there, the real competition kicks off as the finalists will travel to Miller Motorsports Park and receive training at the Ford Racing Miller Performance Training Center before being run through a variety of exercises in and out of the Ford Mustangs. And it won’t just be their stopwatches that the judges will be looking at, as the panel of judges on hand will watch as the drivers show their skills along the same scope of talents that are required for pro racing success in the modern world, from data analysis and media interaction to the ability to find a strong set up quickly.
For the finalists, the goal will be simple — convince the panel of judges that they are the driver who should be taking the green flag as the Mustang Challenge season finale kicks off.
All applicants must hold a valid race license (SCCA, NASA, ASN-FIA, etc), but not have any pro racing starts on their racing resume. The contest is open to individuals ages 18 and older residing in the United States and Canada.
The judges will review all eligible videos received during the contest period. The judges will evaluate each video based on quality, content, personality and overall entertainment and select the five videos that best convey a candidate who can go the full distance to make it to race in the Mustang Challenge.
Carroll Shelby’s own tuning company Shelby American has announced the return of the GT350 model, debuting it at the Barrett-Jackson auction in Scottsdale 45 years after the original GT350 was released.
Based on the new 2011 Mustang GT, the GT350 gets a Ford Racing supercharged mated to the stock car’s 5.0-liter V8 to make roughly 500-hp – which shouldn’t be hard considering the stock motor already makes 412-hp. The engine also gets some bling with Blue Shelby GT350 valve covers and billet caps.
In addition, the GT350 conversion includes a complete aero kit with a dual central-exit exhaust system, 19-inch Cragar wheels, Goodyear tires and a Baer six-piston front brake setup up front. Several changes have been made to the suspension with Ford Racing springs, struts, sway bars and adjustable camber/caster plates.
“In 1964, Ford Motor Company asked Shelby American to turn their secretary’s car into a race winner to help them sell Mustangs,” said Carroll Shelby, founder of Shelby American. “Our Shelby GT350 ruled its class at the track and was feared by GM and Chrysler owners on the street. Enthusiasts have anticipated the GT350′s return since it went out of production in 1970. Now my band of hot rodders has created a car worthy of the name.”
All GT350 conversions are performed at Shelby American’s facility in Las Vegas for a price of $33,995 (plus the cost of the car). Yikes!
GALLERY: Shelby American GT350
Official release after the jump:
Along with a simply massive display of 2010 Mustangs for this year’s SEMA Show, Ford will showcase the tuning expertise of four shops (and one in-house project) that have chosen the F-150 as their vehicle of choice. And just as the Mustang is the most customized overall vehicle in the $31.8 billion aftermarket industry, the F-Series of pickups is the most popular pickup to modify.
“The F-150 is the ultimate all-around ‘do everything’ truck, and it is available in 10 different distinct versions, everything from an XL work truck to a Platinum luxury edition to the latest edition – the SVT Raptor – for the ultimate off-road experience,” said Mark Grueber, Ford F-150 marketing manager. “People can personalize the F-150 to meet any need and do just about anything with it.”
Ford’s SEMA Design Manager Melvin Betancourt agrees and says much of the F-150’s success with tuners is due to its broad appeal. “Some people use the F-150 as a work truck. For others, it’s a luxury truck,” he said. “And everyone is always looking to create something that’s new that no one else has ever seen.”
See the full list of custom F-150 trucks after the jump:
I Legacy, the company responsible for the Lee Iacocca Silver 45th Anniversary Edition Ford Mustang has just announced pricing o the completely custom pony car and it’s not easy to swallow. The coachbuilt creation, named after the man who first introduced the world to the Mustang 45 years ago, will start at $89,950 – more than even the Mustang GT500KR. And for the record, that price does not include the Ford Racing supercharger, which pums up the power to 400hp.
What the Iacocca Mustang offers is exclusivity, not just through its design but due to its rarity, with just 45 of the cars being built.
“The Iacocca Mustang embodies all the elements of a car that will be a future collectible,” said Keith Martin, publisher of Sports Car Market magazine. “It is stunning in appearance, will be built in limited numbers and has top-flight performance. Further, given its true custom-built nature, it is being offered at a very reasonable price.”
The car sits lower than stock and has a completely redesigned front end with a slanted grille and recessed headlights. The wheels are 20-inch Iacocca Design models with center caps that feature a bold “I” in the middle. Other markings, including an Iacocca Design hood badge and Iacocca lettering on the rear, will help distinguish this car as a rarity – as will the special Iacocca silver paint.
Inside the choachwork continues with special leather seats, a new leather wrapped steering wheel with an “I” badge, Iacocca-lettering on the door sills and a numbered dash plaque.
As for performance, the 45 cars will be outfitted with a Ford Racing handling package and optional 14-inch Ford Racing brakes.
The Iacocca Silver 45th Anniversary Edition Ford Mustang is offered exclusively through Galpin Ford.
GALLERY: Iacocca Silver 45th Anniversary Edition Ford Mustang
Official release after the jump:
As promised, Ford Racing will bring the Mustang to NASCAR, starting next year in the Nationwide Series.
Looking rather un-Mustang-like, with the exception of a decal strip across the front that bears some resemblance to the narrow grille and headlight assembly on the 2010 Mustang, Ford says the cars will be part of a limited “muscle car” rollout – which will also include the Dodge Challenger.
“We’re excited about being able to race Mustang in front of our loyal NASCAR fan base and know it’s going to win races and championships just like it has in every other series it has competed,” said Brian Wolfe, director of Ford North America Motorsports. “The Mustang created the pony car movement when it debuted in 1964. Now, the NASCAR Mustang has the opportunity to create a whole new look to stock car racing at its highest levels.”
When the story was first reported that both Ford and Doge would bring their pony cars to NASCAR, it was expected that the vehicles would move into the top-level Sprint Cup series, helping boost interest after the series has posted a considerable decline in attendance and TV viewership in the past year. That no longer appears to be the case. Instead, the cars will debut in the Nationwide Series in an effort to help distinguish that series from Sprint Cup.
“We had been talking with NASCAR for some time about Mustang as part of its vision for a ‘muscle car’ rollout for the Nationwide Series. We both saw it as a way of differentiating the series from Sprint Cup,” said Wolfe. “We loved the idea, so we jumped on the chance to extend Mustang’s racing legacy to a new series reaching a huge and loyal audience. Mustang has dominated other forms of racing, including NHRA drag racing, Grand-Am Cup road racing, and Formula D drifting, and now it’s coming to NASCAR Nationwide.”
Surprisingly, while the Ford Mustang is touted as the “most successful single nameplate brand in professional racing history,” it has never competed in NASCAR.
“I think race fans – and Mustang loyalists – will be very pleased when we publicly roll out the first car later this fall,” said Wolfe.
Official release after the jump: