The Shelby GT500 Is Faster Than The McLaren F1 In One Weird Metric

Illustration for article titled The Shelby GT500 Is Faster Than The McLaren F1 In One Weird Metric
Photo: Ford

The 2020 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500, with its supercharged V8 and 760 horsepower, is claimed to be faster from zero to 100 mph and back down to zero than the hallowed McLaren F1. It’s a silly metric that hardly anybody uses or is familiar with, but I guess faster is faster.

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The McLaren F1 LM, which was a lightened, more powerful and aerodynamic version of the regular McLaren F1, achieved the 0-100-0 sprint in 11.5 seconds. The GT500 did it in a claimed 10.6 seconds, according to a Ford press release.

I think it’s safe to assume that you and I both are pretty familiar with reading zero to 60 times. It’s a metric everyone uses, so we have a pretty good grasp on where a car falls compared to everything else when we hear the number. But 0-100-0? Who even uses this? What’s the context, besides other stratospheric cars every so often?

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Anyway this was achieved, reports the company, through the use of the car’s power, fat brakes (16.5-inch front rotors) and the dual-clutch system. Dual-clutch transmissions are generally said to help cars shift faster than humans can themselves, thus being integral in setting faster laptimes and acceleration sprints.

The GT500 will not have a manual option, which drew the ire of Mustang and Shelby fans. A Mustang with no manual? Feh! So, this 0-100-0 stunt feels a little like Ford trying to convince us the dual-clutch road was the right path.

But then I have to ask. Would you, a potential buyer, prefer being able to brag about a claimed statistic that is rarely used, or drop the statistic and row your own gears?

Writer at Jalopnik and consumer of many noodles.

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DISCUSSION

redpir8roberts
RedPir8Roberts

There is history in this: The original 427 Cobra was legendary for many years its 0-100-0 feat, so much so that Motor Trend years later pitted the Viper against it. Remember, back in the 1960s, most cars had terrible brakes and a lot of weight to handle. The Cobra legend arose because it was essentially a race car for the street, and could outrun and outstop virtually everything by a wide margin, certainly anything one might encounter in America.

https://www.motortrend.com/news/dodge-viper-versus-shelby-cobra/

The origin of this is here; I think the “skepticism” of the Motor Trend piece ignored the fact that the 13.8 second time was thrown down by hot shoe test driver and racer Ken Miles (deprived by “team orders” regarding the 1-2-3 finish in the GT40 of a LeMans win, since his car, which had been ahead, started further back on the grid) was the one who set the time, and on specific tires. I’m sure MT also wanted to beat C/D, and raise up the Viper. Given the intervening years and tech, the Viper should have trounced it by even more, even if Shelby was using a bit of showmanship back in the day.

https://www.caranddriver.com/reviews/a15141361/1965-shelby-cobra-427-road-test/