Chevrolet’s release of the all new Camaro ZL1 at the 2011 Chicago Auto Show allowed them to reignite the muscle car wars that have been burning up the automotive websites for a good and long time. But before Chevrolet can shout out "Checkmate,"
Ford has answered the ZL1 with an update car of their own: the 2013 Shelby GT500. Recent spy shots have revealed that the company is already testing the 2013MY GT500 and it will be more powerful than ever.
The Camaro ZL1’s LSA 6.2L supercharged V-8 engine producing an estimated 550 horsepower and 550 pound-feet. of torque is nothing to shake a stick at, but Ford has one-upped them once again. The Eaton M112 supercharger that is being housed in the current GT500’s V8 engine will be replaced with the more-efficient and quieter TVS unit. The V8 engine found in the 2013 model will also get modified and bumped up to 5.8L, all while producing up to 650 horsepower and making it the most powerful, factory made Mustang ever! The game continues...Your move Chevrolet.
UPDATE 07/02/2012: Ford has unveiled a new video featuring the 2013 Shelby GT500 as it goes out to the quarter-mile drag strip to see what it’s made of.
More details on the 2013 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 after the jump.
Exterior and Interior
Compared to the current GT500, the 2013 model will get improvements on both the exterior and the interior. The exterior look will be "more modern and edgy," which probably means the head and tail lamps will get LEDs. In addition, the next GT500 will keep its basic rear-suspension design, but will probably get a new set of wheels and an overall improved look.
For the 2013 model year, Ford will increase the V8 engine’s displacement from the current 5.4-liter to a 5.8-liter displacement. The result is an increase from 550 horsepower to a staggering 662 horsepower HP. Next to a bigger engine, the existing Eaton M112 supercharger will be replaced by a more efficient and quieter TVS unit. This can be translated into better performance numbers. Rumors suggest that the top speed will go up to an impressive 190 mph.
When Can I Buy One?
The 2013 Shelby GT500 will go on sale at the end of 2012. The base price is $54,200, but if you want to add the SVT Performance Package, it jumps up by another $3,495. This package includes: Torsen limited-slip differential, 19" forged-aluminum front wheels or 20" forged-aluminum rear wheels, Bilstein adjustable dampers, unique rear springs, a unique instrument cluster, and an SVT gear shift knob. A glass roof will add yet another $1,995, while an electronic package adds another $2,340.
Not since the glory days of Muhammad Ali and the recently departed Smokin’ Joe Frazier do we have two industry heavyweights at the top of their game, dueling for muscle car supremacy.
The Shelby GT500 versus the Camaro ZL1.
By sheer force of power alone, the latter’s LSA 6.2-liter supercharged V8 engine that produces 580 horsepower and 556 lb/ft of torque falls just short of the frightening capabilities of the 2013 Shelby GT500 and it’s powerful 5.0-liter V8.
Anybody can draw arguments for both cars and there’s really no right or wrong answer as far as preferences are concerned. But in our minds, power is gold, especially in the muscle car world.
The Camaro ZL1 is an awesome muscle car worthy of the acclaim it has received. But it’s met its match with the 2013 Shelby GT500 and the early returns say that 650 horsepower beats out 580 all the time.
In the ZL1’s defense, it may be a little short when it comes to power, but the Camaro has the advantage of being cheaper as it is priced at $50K, plus it will go on sale at the beginning of 2012. Some may even say that it also looks better than the GT500.
The 2012 Nissan GT-R is also a real competitor for the 2013 Shelby GT500. The Japanese model is powered by a VR38DETT 3.8-liter V6 twin turbo engine that delivers 540 HP and is mated to a 6 speed dual clutch transmission. The GT-R will sprint from 0 to 60 mph in just three seconds making it faster than both the American models, but it is also much more expensive, coming in at $89,950 for the Premium model and $95,100 for the Black Edition.
Jay Leno reviews the 2013 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500
More powerful engine
Impressive top speed
The Camaro ZL1 poses a serious threat
More expensive than its main competitor