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Is the Ford GT a Supercar or a Muscle Car? (Answered)

There are three generations of Ford GT, all with different specifications. Since supercar and muscle cars do not have any standard definitions, many car experts use them interchangeably. However, there are a few differences between the two. By keeping the most authentic definition in mind and utilizing our mechanical background, we’ve concluded – Here is a short answer:

All generations of Ford GT fall into the supercar category. They have high engine power (greater than 500 HP), boast a sleek and aerodynamic design, have a low center of gravity for better handling, and weigh below the 3000 pounds mark. These features make the Ford GT a classic supercar.

But there is more to it than this short answer. After thorough research on its engine specifications, design, and other factors, we can only classify a car into a specific category. After careful consideration, we have cataloged different generations of Ford GT in their respective categories. We have used engine specs, performance, design of the car, and drive system to determine which Ford GT belongs to which class. Read on to find out which category the Ford GT belongs to!

Engine Specs

Certain specifications of an engine, such as its displacement, power, and configuration of its cylinders, play a crucial role in deciding a car’s type. Let us first see the engine specifications of a supercar. These engine specs are the characteristics of supercars. These include a powerful V6 or V8 engine with high HP (usually greater than 500 HP). The displacement value falls somewhere in the neighborhood of 5.0L.

When we see the engines of sports cars, we see different specifications. Sports cars usually have less powerful engines than muscle cars and supercars, and their engines also weigh less. Sports cars have a higher power/weight ratio that assists them in achieving better handling.  The (very general) rule of thumb is that an inline six-cylinder or V6 engine characterizes sports cars.

Using a very authentic site, we have found some important specs for all generations of Ford GT to reach a valid conclusion. Here are a few specs that will help us to arrive at a well-researched answer.

Ford GT 1st Gen (2004-2006):

5.4L V8 6MT – 549 HP

 Ford GT 2nd Gen (2017-2019):

3.5L V6 7AT- 656 HP

Ford GT 3rd Gen (2019-Present):

3.5L V6 7AT – 660 HP

Apart from the first generation of Ford GT, which had a V8 engine, all of the other generations had a V6 engine. Specifications-wise, there are not many differences between the second and the third generation. From their high engine power (>600 HP) to low ground clearance (4.7 in), both of these generations are classic supercars.

The first generation does have some similarities with muscle cars of its time, such as a heavy-build V8 engine with high displacement. But after seeing their design, performance specs, and drive system, we now categorize them as supercars as well (more on that later).

What truly stamps Ford GT as a supercar is that Ford Motors advertises them as such. In every advertisement, Ford GT is categorized as a supercar by its parent company, Ford Motors. The latest model of Ford GT has rightfully been termed as the most powerful Ford GT ever. With a massive 700 HP engine power, this car truly qualifies as one of the most elite supercars announced by Ford. (Although, it is still far from the category of hypercars, who boast dazzlingly high HP. For reference, let us take the Aston Martin Valkyrie, which offers an engine power of about 1200 HP.)

Performance Specs

While deciding the type of a car, dissecting the performance levels of its different generations is of utmost importance. Supercars have a history of being powerful and ‘speedy’ cars. They typically have a top speed greater than 300 km/h and can accelerate to 100 km/h within 4 seconds. These are the general performance specifications that we see in supercars. Although, it is pertinent to mention that supercar is considered a broad term with a wide range of specs. There is no standard set of specifications that decide whether a car is a supercar or not.

As far as muscle cars are concerned, their performance level is not on par with supercars. They usually have a top speed under the 300 km/h milestone. Plus, they don’t offer the same level of handling that supercars do.

If we see the performance specs of the first-gen of Ford GT, it has a top speed of 330 km/h and can reach the 100 kph mark within 3.9 seconds. The second and third generations of Ford GT have a top speed of about 350 kph. Their acceleration can take them from 0-100kph in 3.1 seconds. From these specs, it is clear that Ford GT is a supercar.

Also read: Is The Dodge Viper A Supercar or Muscle car?

Design

The most notable characteristic of supercars is their aerodynamic design. Supercars confer a premium look and feel to the onlookers. Their sleek and glossy outlook, coupled with their aerodynamic structure, distinguishes them from other types of cars. They are neither ‘boxy’ nor have a large grill on the front (features typically seen in muscle cars, as shown in the image below).

All generations of Ford GT have the trademark design characteristics of supercars. They are aerodynamic automobiles with a low center of gravity and low ground clearance for better handling. Their coupe body is also a classic feature of supercars. Although many sports cars and muscle cars have the coupe body style, Ford GT best fits in the supercar realm when we match it with the other factors.

Drive System

The final factor that comes into play in this discussion is that of the drive system. The drive system is also an important point to discuss when arguing whether the Ford GT is a muscle car or a sports car. The standard drive system in both muscle and pony cars is RWD (rear-wheel drive). This gives muscle cars better traction by transferring weight to the rear.

Supercars have traditionally been equipped with rear-wheel drive as well. This is because they are designed for top speed and optimum performance. An AWD requires the engine to be mounted higher. A higher engine means a higher center of gravity, which puts the handling aspect of these cars in jeopardy. This drive system is not ideal for any car primarily designed for speed, such as sports cars, supercars, or hypercars.

When we look at the Ford GT, we see that each generation has an RWD (rear-wheel drive). All of the models of Ford GT have RWD. Combining it with several other factors, such as aerodynamic design, top speed, and high engine power, all points towards the fact that Ford GT is a supercar.

Price

As far as cost is concerned, supercars have always been pricy. They have never been for an average middle-class car enthusiast who’s on a budget. They indeed leave other types, such as muscle cars or sports cars, far behind when it comes to price. The only category that beats supercars in terms of costliness is hypercars.

The 2020 Ford GT is one of the most expensive supercars on the market right now. They can be bought at an extravagant price of $500,000. You’ll have to break the bank for sure if you are planning to own this supercar.

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