Ford has been teasing the public with a mystery 2015 Mustang, but now we have confirmation of the next generation of SVT Mustangs! Ford has been hard at work doing R&D on the S550 SVT halo car, with videos of it appearing on the Nurburgring and driving around Michigan, but we now have confirmation on the nameplate of the model; it will be the Mustang GT350! That’s right folks, the GT350 badge is coming to the next generation of Mustang!
Their was a lot of ambiguity as to what exactly the S550 Mustang SVT model would be called; various news outlets and forums threw around different ideas such as Mach 1, Cobra, GT500, Boss, and more, but the one that kept popping up in every thread was GT350. The GT350 badge was finally confirmed in a leaked info sheet first brought to light by TheMustangSource and then expanded upon by Mustang6G, showing different fender emblems, including the new 5.0 emblem. The code under the GT350 badge that reads, “16098B” is Ford’s in-house code for fender emblems. Worth noting is how the “GT350″ is written in Shelby style font, which does not come as a surprise to most people.
Evidence of the GT350
In addition to the recently leaked fender emblem sheet from Ford, there have also been other confirmations that a SVT GT350 is on the way. The most reliable of these is a screen capture that was posted to a forum of a Dealer Promo order sheet. Someone from a Ford dealership posted an image that shows the available promotional content they could order (pictures, pamphlets, etc.) for various vehicles with a “Shelby GT350″ being listed as one of those vehicles. Between the dealer promo sheet and the GT350 badges being leaked, we can expect the return of the legendary Ford track-prepped Pony.
Is Shelby building the S550 GT350?
In the past, specifically with the GT500, Ford built the Shelby GT500. Shelby only licensed the name and badge to Ford, and Shelby’s involvement with the GT500 ended there. With the S197 model of the GT350 it was the exact opposite situation. Ford provided Shelby with the Mustangs, while Shelby did everything else thus making the S197 GT350 a Shelby American car, not a Ford car. This meant that you could only buy a S197 GT350 from Shelby American licensed Ford Dealers.
For the 2015 – 2016 Mustang GT350 it looks like the previous situation is going to be flipped. Ford will now be offering the S550 GT350 and Shelby will be licensing the badge and name to Ford. There has been various speculation that the GT500 moniker will return to Shelby American and that Shelby will offer the GT500 similar to how they offered the S197 GT350. The reasoning is that Ford has never offered two SVT Mustangs. They have offered two SVT vehicles, but one of which has always been a truck and the other a Mustang/Focus. This theory does give credibility to the rumor of their being a Shelby GT500 with more power than the Dodge Challenger Hellcat.
2015 – 2016 Mustang GT350 Specs
With Ford bringing back the track oriented Z/28 killer that is the Mustang GT350, we are all dying to see the window sticker and performance specs. Ford has been very secretive with the GT350 making sure that little to no information gets out. With that said, when you have a company with as many employees as Ford has and something as juicy as the GT350, information can not help but to seep out.
Road & Track predicted the GT350
Road & Track has predicted the announcement of the GT350 and that there would be no more GT500 for the S550 platform from Ford. So far, they have been spot on with their information on the next generation of Mustang details. With that said, by taking the information Road & Track has reported on and merging that with all the information we have gotten from various Ford-insiders, we can begin to paint a pretty reliable picture of what we can expect.
While the public waits for confirmation from Ford, the unanimously reported 5.2L coyote based “Voodoo engine” is the unifying idea across all demographics. With mention of the 5.2L engine also comes mention of a flat-plane crankshaft, which would be needed for the reported 8k redline and high 500 HP figures that are expected of the GT350. Interior spy shots of the GT350 hint at the MT-82 transmission backing up the power, not the fan-favorite Tremec Magnum XL.
There is also expected to be two different GT350 models released; a base GT350 and a track ready GT350R. Similar to the Boss 302 and the Boss 302 Laguna Seca, the GT350R is expected to be a much more stripped down Mustang, that is set to carve up the track. Like the Laguna Seca Boss, the GT350R would be a no frills version of its base option, giving enthusiasts the ultimate performance machine!
What is the Mustang GT350 release date?
As of yet, there is no officially confirmed release date for the GT350, but we have been tipped off that we can expect the GT350 to be revealed on September 19th at the Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge. While it won’t be competing in the race, it will be the first the public can see the GT350; a January reveal date is expected for the consumer version of the Shelby GT350.
Are you excited for the return of the GT350? Or are you disappointed it is not a GT500?