America’s top dog currently prowling the streets, the 2013 Shelby GT500, was given a chance to tear up Germany’s legendary Autobahn and the Nürburgring race track. If there’s one road you would want to take the 650-HP, 200 -MPH beast it would clearly be one with a straightaway and not speed limit.
With the track still wet from the day before, Ford’s Jeff Wise took on the Nürburgring race track in Germany with a fresh Shelby GT500 – a car seldom seen around those parts. While the video does little justice to how the car performed or the fun he must have had, his story speaks to a truth rarely understood here in America. Germans and Europeans alike have a deep fascination with American muscle cars. i mean, I can’t remember someone ever asking anyone behind the wheel of a GT500 for their autograp!
Many in Europe view Ford’s 2013 Shelby GT500 with the same awe and respect many here in America would reserve only for the rare glimpse at an R8, M6, or Porsche GT3. Is it because of the rarity factor, the image and implied sophistication one might apply to the driver, or simply the difference in price tag? One thing is for sure, performance differences are surely not the culprit. Ford and other American car companies have already proven they can compete against the likes of the M3 with a car half the price. In the end it just comes down to apples against oranges. The high performance European cars were built with a different vision than that of the Shelby and comparing the two just doesn’t make that much sense in the end. We crowd around and gawk at those magnificently designed Euro sports cars for the same reason entire towns in Germany swarmed to catch this GT500 rolling through. It’s a rare sight and represents the best from a far and, to some extent, mysterious culture that built their machine to serve a different purpose.
Read Jeff Wise’s documentation of his time tearing up the Nürburgring race track here.