EA, Shelby team up for a one-off GT500 Need for Speed Edition

Article by Christian Andrei, on October 17, 2011

To promote Need for Speed The Run, a 2011 Shelby GT500 Super Snake “Need for Speed” Edition will be offered by Shelby American and Electronic Arts (EA). The game will arrive at stores in the upcoming holiday season. This special one-off car can be seen on the video game’s cover. It will be auctioned in late 2012 but before that, it will go on a world tour and will be seen at major automotive and gaming events.

The auction is being done for the benefit of the Carroll Shelby Foundation, which helps seriously ill kids as well as encourages young adults to succeed by awarding funds for higher education.

This car is expected to fetch more than the $83,000 base price of a 2012 Super Snake. This car is not a dressed-up nonfunctional show car. Rather, it is based off the Mustang GT500 and is powered by a 750-hp supercharged 5.4-liter V-8.

Its modifications include an upgraded driveshaft, new throttle bodies, dynamic adjustable dampers, lowering springs, and stabilizer bars. The car has been given Wimbledon White paint with custom gray Super Snake stripes. A “Shelby” lettering is seen across the rear deck lid. It also has official “Super Snake” vehicle badges. It has a custom two-tone black interior.

Powering the new Ford Mustang 2011 Shelby GT500 is the supercharged 5.4-liter aluminum-block engine. With this, the new GT500 can experience output as high as 550 horsepower with maximum torque of 510 lb.-ft. This output, when compared to the 2010 version, is higher by 10 horsepower.

In addition, since the engine is lighter by 102 pounds, the new GT500 has enhanced acceleration, handling, steering precision, and fuel economy. It also offers improved power-to-weight ratio. Shelby American Carroll Shelby founder shared that when it comes to hot rods, the practice has always been to reduce the weight in order to have better performance.

Shelby added that while this may not be as enticing as putting in bigger brakes or adding in extra horsepower, lowering the weight is in fact a smart move. Meanwhile Jost Capito, the director of global performance vehicles and motorsports business development, revealed that with the new GT500, Ford's very own Special Vehicle Team, or SVT, has managed to show that it is still possible to elevate the performance standards of this model to higher levels and even deliver better refinement.

All of the different changes implemented, he continued, were done because there was a longing for a vehicle that would offer excellent driving dynamics and enhanced handling, from saving on its weight all the way to improving its balance.

The engine equipped inside the new Gt500 utilizes the advanced liner coating known as Plasma Transferred Wire Arc, or PTWA. This is a process wherein a composite coating, which contains nanoparticles and measures 150 microns, are applied on the interior surfaces of the cylinder bores of the engine.

This is unlike the cast-iron liners that are usually utilized on aluminum engine blocks. This PTWA technology has been patented by Ford and the inventors were honored in 2009 with the National Inventor of the Year Award by the Intellectual Property Owners Education Foundation.

The engineers at SVT have truly outdone themselves as they have managed to put the high performance on an entirely new level under the new GT500. More than ever, the GT500 is fitted with a new aluminum-block engine and delivers improved driving dynamics, better handling, enhanced fuel economy, and more importantly, higher horsepower.

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