When Ford unveiled the GT Prototype in 2002, the public response was overwhelming. They needed a new flagship, something to show the world where they have been, and what they are capable of. To make sure the 2nd generation was a direct successor, they brought in the designer of the original Ford GT40. Carroll Shelby demanded the very best, so the engine, supercharger, transmission, and even the McIntosh audio are composed of the best materials money can buy. After the necessary crash testing and Federal certifications, production was ready to begin in March of 2004.
Keeping his promise to Henry Ford II, Mr. Shelby had one final task. Just like he did 50 years before, he took the car to Italy to test it on enemy soil. Therefore, the first production car was fitted with all four factory options along with a full roll cage. Plant Build Phase1 Car 1 is known as “The Nardo Car” because it was used to certify the car’s top speed at the historic Nardo Ring.
Their goal was a sustained 205 mph, and after hours of relentless wide-open runs, it proved to be capable of sustaining 209.1 mph. It has special cooling aerofoils to prevent overheating on long runs, and a Sparco Racing Harness to hold you in place. After Nardo, it went to the ‘Ring for hot laps and then a tour of European Ford dealers. After proving its abilities, Ford kept it on display until the 3rd Ford GT Rally in 2008.
It was held at Shelby American in Las Vegas, and the event was only open to GT owners. There the car was auctioned for charity, and it has had the same owner ever since. Signatures of the team can be found in many places, and this car serves as a reminder of their dedication. If you want to own a piece of automotive history, it will be a primetime lot at Mecum’s Monterey Auction.
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Mecum Auctions is now headquartered in Walworth, Wisconsin, and since 2011 has been ranked No. 1 in the world with number of collector cars offered at auction, No. 1 in the world with number of collector cars sold at auction, No. 1 in the U.S. with number of auction venues, No. 1 in the U.S. in total dollar volume of sales, and is host to the world’s largest collector car auction held annually in Kissimmee, Florida.