We thought we would never see a flat-plane V8 from an American manufacturer, but it has happened. It may have eight cylinders, but Ford’s all-new powerplant in the upcoming Shelby GT350 is more like two race-bred four cylinders sharing a common crankshaft. The Italians have long lauded the praises of this design, as it allows for lighter engine internals and the ability to rev much higher than their cross-plane competitors.
Ford is rating the new 5.2-liter engine at 526 hp and 429 lb-ft, according to a press release issued by the marque today. It does this by spinning to a Nascar-like 8,250 rpm. Only a handful of transmissions can withstand that engine speed, so a six-speed manual is the only gearbox offered. This engine will be exclusively available in the Shelby GT350 and Shelby GT350R mustangs set to go on sale this fall.
Ford is using the GT350 to launch a few other technologies that seemed impossible just a few years ago. A composite oil pan will keep temperatures down, and instead of cast iron sleeves, each cylinder liner will be made of steel wire transferred to the block by plasma welding. This engine is among the most advanced on the market and asserts Ford’s commitment to innovation and performance.
(See Also: 2016 Ford Mustang GT350 and GT350R Price Leaked)
As the release also tells us, this particular V8 is the most powerful, naturally aspirated, road-going engine to ever be created by Ford. You can get a good look at the mechanics of this engine, as well as some of the features to be found in this powerful iteration of the Mustang, in the gallery below.
Stay tuned to Autofluence for more Mustang and Shelby news, and be sure to browse our exclusive listings of Mustangs for sale for yourself, and get a little closer to the predecessor of this new Shelby.