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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I'm in full curmudgeon mode today. It's hot and I just got back from the prairies

7
Ford GT40 Mk I - Prototype

https://www.classicdriver.com/en/article/autos/driven-1965-ford-gt40-roadster



Ford GT40 Mk I - 289 Cubic inch Ford Fairlane motor

http://hiconsumption.com/2016/06/auction-block-1966-ford-gt40-mk-1/


Ford GT40 Mk II -- Aaaah


Just your typical grocery getting Ford sedan motivation 427 Cubic Inch Ford Galaxy motor


Now that's a functional rear end

http://www.finescale.com/product-info/kit-reviews/2009/10/trumpeter-1-12-scale-ford-gt40-mkii


Ford GT40 Mk III - Street Car 289 Cubic inch
Wire Wheels
Sold as a street car from the beginning.

http://www.topcarrating.com/1967-ford-gt40-mk-3-mark-iii.php


Ford GT40 Mk IV
This is the one that makes Italian and German car makers sweat at night
The Mk. IV ran in only two races, the 1967 12 Hours of Sebring and the 1967 24 Hours of Le Mans and won both events.

http://www.roadandtrack.com/car-culture/g5273/photos-1967-ford-gt-40-mk-iv/



Just a couple'a good ol' boys - Dan Gurney and AJ Foyt


http://performance.ford.com/series/ford-gt/news/articles/wec/2017/03/icons-of-ford-performance--mark-iv-engines.html

If you can't beat them, change the rules. That's the only way the Europeans could beat this car.

The Ford GT40 had a long and interesting history.
When Ford wanted to go endurance racing they went to Eric Broadley and Lola Automobiles in England to design a chassis. Ford hamstrung the English by demanding that the chassis be constructed of steel because Ford was more comfortable with this than aluminum. As a result these cars were seriously overweight.
They started with 255 cubic inch small blocks and switched to 289 cubic inch small blocks for the production Mark Is.
If a little is good, a whole pile more is a whole pile better. Ford went with the 427 cubic inch FE big block for the Mark II
The Mark III was a street version of the Mark I and sold to the public in England. 7 were sold. The 289 was detuned to 335 hp.
Ford decided to get serious and totally redesigned the GT40 in the USA by Kar Kraft using aluminum and modern construction techniques.
The GT40 Mark IV is the only time there was a totally American victory at Le Mans. An American car with an American engine driven by American drivers and an American team.


2004-2006 Ford GT

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ford_GT

Supercharged 5.4L modular V8
A pretty well executed redo of the Ford GT40 Mk III


2016-2020 Ford GT
3.5 liter twin-turbocharged EcoBoost V6 engine making 647 hp

Well, I guess if you go to Home Depot and have to bring some 2x4's home you can stick them in that tunnel.
Okay, okay, it's not THAT bad looking, and it may be aerodynamically efficient, but it's just got too much junk on it.

Oh, and in case you are wondering why the new cars are Ford GTs rather than Ford GT40s, the brain trust at Ford forgot to copyright the name GT40.
A company, Safir Engineering Ltd. copyrighted the name in 1985. In 1999 the name was transferred to Safir GT40 Spares Inc. which makes spare parts for the original Ford GT40s. Safir offered to sell the name to Ford for get this, $40 million! Ford declined.
 

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Those are on my short list of "Favorite Cars". I don't stand a snowball's chance of fitting into one, but I still love them.....
 

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Discussion Starter #3
They are breath taking cars.
They are from the golden age of racing and the golden age of car design when there was as much art and seat of the pants engineering as true science.
They may be old, but they are truly gorgeous.

The whole story of Ford taking on Ferrari at Le Mans is just so epic!

All the characters involved Henry Ford II, Enzo Ferrari, Caroll Shelby, Eric Broadley, Dan Gurney, AJ Foyt.

The cars of this era are so gorgeous.

Manufacturers of this era all made gorgeous designs, but Ford certainly was involved with its share.


De Tomaso Mangusta


De Tomaso Pantera - sold through Lincoln Mercury

Old versus new. Yeah old!

Crotchety old Codger
 

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Yep. I grew up in that era. Got my driver's license in 1966 and had been reading Car and Driver and Road & Track since I was 10.

Lola T70 MKIII is another favorite of mine, along with the Ferrari P3.
 

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Nice pics - just watched on AMZ Prime documentary about Ferrari vs Ford at Lemans - was very interesting
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Here is a great web site that talks about the Mk II winning LeMans.

http://gt40.rkmotorscharlotte.com

This company had the 2nd place car restored. There is even controversy about which car won the race. They discuss it on this web site.
I think it gives a great back drop to the headline 'Ford Wins LeMans'
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
Yep. I grew up in that era. Got my driver's license in 1966 and had been reading Car and Driver and Road & Track since I was 10.

Lola T70 MKIII is another favorite of mine, along with the Ferrari P3.
I always remember reading the 'Classified' section in the back of Road & Track. Around 1970 there was always an ad for a Mark I and a Mark IV by a Dr. Harry Heinl from Hialeah Florida.
After Ford was done with the racing program they sold all of the cars off. Apparently Harry had some sort of relationship with Ford and bought several of the cars.

I recall reading a Peterson Publishing publication from the mid-70s that talked about him (I'm pretty sure) deciding that one of the Mk Is needed the Quad Cam Indy 255 Ford V8 in it.
It's sort of sacrilege now to consider doing this, but hey, the guy loved these cars; why not take an Indianapolis winning Ford engine and stick it in a LeMans winning Ford car!

I have been looking for this magazine for years to re-read the details.

At one time or another he owned:

#1061 – Mark 1 289 Cubic Road Spec from 1968 to 1969
#1068 –Mark 1 289 Cubic Inch Road car from 1968 to 1971
#1076 – Mark 1 302 Cubic Inch Lightweight Race Special from 1972 to 1976
#J-3 – J Car 1970 to 1973
#J-11 –J- car Unnumbered spare chassis tub never used from 1970 to 1977
#J-7 – Mark IV 1970 to 1982

I would love to read more about this man. He must have some stories to tell.

Sigh.
 

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I think you missed the best part of the original GT40. The car was created as a big middle finger to Ferrari to beat them at Le Mans after old man Ferrari screwed Ford. Ferrari won Le Mans for several years straight beforehand and they haven't been back since in an official capacity. The cars originally in their first couple of years were horribly unreliable until they got Ken Miles and Shelby involved. Ford spent a ridiculous amount to money and time to pull it off.

Personally I think the new Ford GT is brilliant. Just like the original it was made to win Le Mans and did it. Although you could kind of argued they were handed the win...

IMO the early 2000s Ford GT is kind of like the MkiV Supra in that they were more popular after they were on sale. Back when they were new they kind of languished on the lot. I think the modability of the car greatly helped it.
 

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I don't think I'd say he "screwed" Ford. He backed out of a business deal that would have almost given Ford complete control of his business.

I'd say he backed out of GETTING screwed.....
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I think you missed the best part of the original GT40. The car was created as a big middle finger to Ferrari to beat them at Le Mans after old man Ferrari screwed Ford. Ferrari won Le Mans for several years straight beforehand and they haven't been back since in an official capacity. The cars originally in their first couple of years were horribly unreliable until they got Ken Miles and Shelby involved. Ford spent a ridiculous amount to money and time to pull it off.
I love the story as well, but there are always 2 sides to every story.
Apparently Enzo Ferrari wanted to sell the company to Ford to fund his racing efforts. He saw selling street cars as a means to an end rather than the end itself. After being told that he would have complete freedom to run the racing team, he found in fine print that he would have to beg for budget.

I'm sure for someone as proud as Enzo Ferrari, it must have been insanely infuriating to be a small cog in a big organization. I can see why he would renege on the talks.

http://www.autonews.com/article/19980831/ANA/808310794/story-reveals-why-enzo-ferrari-said-no-to-ford

It's the small company versus big corporation issue which I think we all can sympathize with. Having said that, I love Ford, and I love the idea of ANYTHING that pisses off Ford enough to go racing with both guns blazing, damn the cost!

I still think that if Ford or even GM (ugh, I just threw up in my mouth saying this) went into Formula 1 seriously, they would kick the butt of current dominant manufacturer Mercedes. American engineers are among the best in the world, and given unlimited freedom to compete, they would do the same thing they did back in the '60s.
 

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Thanks for clarifying that. I knew he had a pretty good reason to back out of the deal, but I didn't remember what it was.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
What I love about Ford are their one off, it makes no sense moves that make such memorable illogical cars.

This Italian guy pissed me off. I will spend 10s of millions of dollars and untold R&D effort to get back at him.

They invest in De Tomaso to come out with the Pantera, a sexy mid-engine Italian designed super car with a 351 Cleveland engine to compete with the Chevrolet Corvette.
The gas tanks were not the highest quality so they leaked gasoline. Pantera owners complained to Ford who offered to buy the cars back. The owners refused, saying "no, we don't want to get rid of the cars, we love them, but we don't want them to explode"! What does Ford do, they hire a company to fix the gas tanks.

Imagine being a Pantera owner when a van labeled "Shelby American" pulls up to your driveway and fiberglass coats your gas tank in your driveway!!!!!!! Courtesy of Ford.

Chevy always had better mass produced engines, but HiPo 289s, Boss 302s, Boss 351s, 427 Tunnel Ports, 427 SOHCs, Boss 429s were these niche vehicles that Ford came out with to compete.

Ford always struck me as the American manufacturer who really loved cars versus Chevy who made corporate decisions that really were better for the consumers at large, but were always ruled by the bean counters.


1974 Corvette - Very nice

http://www.corvetteonline.com/news/rare-70-corvette-zr1-stingray-to-be-auctioned-saturday-in-monterey


1974 De Tomaso Pantera 351C

https://www.hemmings.com/classifieds/cars-for-sale/detomaso/pantera-l/1972100.html

Both these cars are VERY nice, but the Pantera is just so much more EXOTIC.

I will never forget about 10 years ago when my nephew came by one summer evening when I was cutting the back lawn. He comes out the back and says that our neighbor has a kit car and that he's having trouble backing it over the curb. I had never seen my neighbor's car so I go up front and what do I see, a 1974 De Tomaso Pantera in burnt orange, like the one above. I can't believe my eyes and his wife is there. She says that he is now out the back cutting the lawn, but would I like to talk to him about his car. I'm like "would I?" He comes out and tells me that his best friend died and GAVE him this car in his will! He asks would I like to go for a ride in it? Uh Yeah.
So we get in, there is this small block thumping about 6" behind my left ear as he backs this thing over the curb like a grandmother. I'm thinking dear lord, he doesn't deserve to own this thing. So he finishes turning it up the street, quickly tachs it up to about 4,000rpm and drops the clutch. The rear of the car stepped about 3 feet to the side and that Cleveland WAILS behind us. Italian style and American muscle. I WILL NEVER FORGET THAT MOMENT.

Sigh. That is the difference between GM and Ford.
 

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GM had had periods where the Engineers ran things, interspersed by periods where the "Finance Guys" ran things.

Guess when GM made it's best cars....

Ford has always had an industry reputation for being run by the Finance Guys, and it was worse when old Henry ran the place with an iron fist. Edsel had to fight like hell to get the innovative designs he was known for, and eventually succumbed to stomach cancer brought on by serious ulcers in 1943 when he was trying to run FoMoCo during WWII.

You should read the books by Bob Lutz. He pulls no punches in describing what went on at The Big Three. Brock Yate's book is also very good.
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
You should read the books by Bob Lutz. He pulls no punches in describing what went on at The Big Three. Brock Yate's book is also very good.
Jim, what is the name of Brock Yate's book? I will get it for sure.

And just so you know, I realize that GM has great cars too. I am just one of the guys who loves Fords (and Toyotas too of course!).

I also love underdogs. I love American Motors Corporation cars, for those of us old enough (mature enough, I'm not old) to remember what they were!
 

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He wrote several, but "The Decline and Fall of the American Automobile Industry" is his best. It was kinda-sorta based on an article he wrote for Car and Driver called "The Grosse Pointe Myopians".
 

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Those old cleveland motors were solid. Before aluminum heads were the rage people were putting the awesome flowing cleveland heads on the windsor motors to make a sort of poor mans' boss, they nicknamed it a clevor motor i think.

Now you've got guys with old pinto 2.3's putting on a volvo head to get DOHC's among other benefits, love what guys come up with.
 

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The Pinto 2.3 is a POS. We used to race the German 2.0 motor. It easily rocked 175HP and would last nearly forever and not just in terms of a typical race motors life either. Kind of like a lot of Porsche motors, change the oil and run 'em forever.
Personally, I really liked the Cleveland 2V heads on street motors. They had smaller ports and really good response at normal RPM's. Did I say normal? My bad.
 

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SilverMk2 said:
I think you missed the best part of the original GT40. The car was created as a big middle finger to Ferrari to beat them at Le Mans after old man Ferrari screwed Ford. Ferrari won Le Mans for several years straight beforehand and they haven't been back since in an official capacity. The cars originally in their first couple of years were horribly unreliable until they got Ken Miles and Shelby involved. Ford spent a ridiculous amount to money and time to pull it off.
I love the story as well, but there are always 2 sides to every story.
Apparently Enzo Ferrari wanted to sell the company to Ford to fund his racing efforts. He saw selling street cars as a means to an end rather than the end itself. After being told that he would have complete freedom to run the racing team, he found in fine print that he would have to beg for budget.

I'm sure for someone as proud as Enzo Ferrari, it must have been insanely infuriating to be a small cog in a big organization. I can see why he would renege on the talks.
I love the story as well, but there are always 2 sides to every story.
Apparently Enzo Ferrari wanted to sell the company to Ford to fund his racing efforts. He saw selling street cars as a means to an end rather than the end itself. After being told that he would have complete freedom to run the racing team, he found in fine print that he would have to beg for budget.

I'm sure for someone as proud as Enzo Ferrari, it must have been insanely infuriating to be a small cog in a big organization. I can see why he would renege on the talks.

http://www.autonews.com/article/19980831/ANA/808310794/story-reveals-why-enzo-ferrari-said-no-to-ford

It's the small company versus big corporation issue which I think we all can sympathize with. Having said that, I love Ford, and I love the idea of ANYTHING that pisses off Ford enough to go racing with both guns blazing, damn the cost!
Well glad you guys have read the whole story. Most people omit the bit after where Ford gets pissed, then spends over 3 years continuing to get their asses handed to them at Lemans by Ferrari because their FordGT is so unreliable. Then finally after over 100million invested and an injection of new tallent, manages to beat them.

But really, who won in that deal? Ferrari is considered one of the absolute most valuable brands in the world now. Their street cars are basically the most sought after exotics in the world and considered fantastic investments. It would be a very differnt automotive world today if Enzo had gone thru with that deal.
 

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Yes it would. We'd have Mustangs with prancing horses on them, and cheaply built Ferraris.

The whole thing was a "Mine's Bigger Than Yours!" exercise on the part of FoMoCo.

But man, it sure was fun to watch!
 
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