Fired by Ford for "inappropriate behavior," Raj Nair joins company that builds Ford GT
Raj Nair, the former president of Ford North America, who left the firm earlier in 2018 following an internal investigation into "inappropriate behavior," has joined Canada-based company Multimatic Motorsports. The privately held racing shop has worked with Ford for decades, and it has built the Ford GT supercar since 2015.
The Ford-Cena Lawsuit Heats up as Cena Claims There Were No Re-Sale Restrictions
John Cena isn’t ready to cave to Ford’s lawsuit just yet. The 16-time WWE champion is fighting back against the Blue Oval with a lawsuit of his own, claiming that Ford’s suit had the legitimacy of a Vince McMahon championship reign because the final contract he signed said nothing about the automaker’s resale clause that forbid Ford GT owners from selling before 24 months of ownership had passed. What was thought to be an open-and-shut case in the beginning has evolved into a rivalry that has the makings of a main event match at Wrestlemania 33. Who do you have? Cena or Ford?
John Cena Sells his new Ford GT; Gets Sued by Ford for $500k
Professional wrestler John Cena is in hot water with Ford for breaching the contract to retain his 2017 Ford GT for 24 months after initial delivery. In fact, Ford is suing Cena for $500,000, citing it “has suffered additional damages and losses, including, but not limited to, loss of brand value, ambassador activity, and customer goodwill due to the improper sale.”
It might seem odd that selling a vehicle could somehow hurt an automaker, but there’s more to it. See, Ford hand-picked applicants to purchase the GT. Part of the selection process included evaluating the potential buyer’s interest in cars, ownership of other high-end vehicles, and their social reach. Basically, Ford chose buyers who would “organically” promote the GT and the Ford brand – sort of like contracting your customers to be a built-in marketing team. Ford certainly chose heavy hitters, too, including automotive legends Jay Leno and Jack Roush.
Cena didn’t even come close to the 24-month agreement. Rather, the wrestler took delivery shortly after September 23, 2017, and Ford learned of Cena’s third-party sell around October 20, 2017. When a Ford GT representative reached out to Cena, he said he sold the car and other property to cover expenses. Ford’s lawsuit claims Cena “unfairly made a large profit from the unauthorized resale flip” and seeks $500,000 in damages.
It’s unknown exactly how much profit Cena made or to whom he sold the car. We’ll keep you updated on any developments with this bizarre situation. In the meantime, check out all the details of the 2017 Ford GT or read Ford’s full lawsuit here.
"Pawn Stars" Steer Clear Of O.J. Simpson’s White Ford Bronco
By now, a lot of us probably know of Pawn Stars, the hit show from The History Channel that gives us a close look at the wheelings and dealings of Rick Harrison and his pawn shop-owning family. The show itself has given us plenty of unique items and moments over the years, but recently, a peculiar piece of Americana made an appearance on the show: O.J. Simpson’s 1993 Ford Bronco.
Yes, the same white Ford Bronco that Simpson was riding in during the infamous highway police chase in 1994 was being offered to Harrison by its owner, Mike Gilbert, O.J.’s former sports manager. Gilbert bought the car from O.J.’s former NFL teammate, Al (AC) Cowlings, the man behind the wheel during the police chase through Los Angeles. Not one to turn down arguably the most iconic Ford SUV of all time, Harrison welcomed Gilbert to his shop to talk about the SUV, even going so far as to take the SUV for a spin around the block. While Harrison did eventually admit that the Bronco was still in fantastic condition and could command millions in an auction, its provenance as having been involved in a double murder case, Simpson’s acquittal notwithstanding, made it very difficult for him to stomach purchasing it. He ultimately rejected Gibson’s offer of $1.3 million for the car, presumably saving himself the headache of having a car drenched in an infamous episode of American history in his inventory.
Continue after the jump to read the full story.
Now That Trump Is The Next POTUS, Will He Go After Ford And Other Automakers For Manufacturing In Mexico?
Back in April, Ford Motor Company announced it was moving its small car production from Michigan to Mexico, drawing strong criticism from then-republican presidential candidate (and now president elect) Donald J. Trump. Throughout his presidential campaign, Trump engaged in a good deal of verbal sparring with the Dearborn-based automaker, pointing to Ford’s plans to build a multi-billion dollar plant across the border as indicative of a larger trend in the U.S. manufacturing jobs sector. Trump has even proposed a 35 percent tax on all autos built in Mexico and shipped to the U.S. And now that Trump is President, automakers may need to rethink their international production strategies.
“I mean, the way our country is run, if it doesn’t happen to be me that wins, you know what’s going to happen? They’re going to build a plant and illegals are going to drive those cars right over the border… And they’ll probably end up stealing the cars,” Trump is quoted in a report from Fortune, published this past January.
Trump has repeatedly pledged to bring more jobs back to U.S. auto manufacturing, and offers pointed criticism of NAFTA, a trade agreement between Canada, the U.S., and Mexico that went into effect in the mid ‘90s.
In response to Trump’s denunciation, Ford countered with a well-executed social media blitz, highlighting how the automaker has invested billions in U.S. plants in the past five years, and created upwards of 28,000 new American jobs. Ford says more investment and more jobs are still on the way.
Ford maintains it will indeed move production of the Focus to Mexico, as well as shift some engine and transmission production over the border. With margins on small cars like the Focus shrinking, the move should help to bolster profits. The move would also include billions in investment for new Mexican production facilities, and is expected to create roughly 3,800 new jobs in Mexico.
Continue reading for the full story.
Matt LeBlanc Has A New Ride And It’s Smoking Tires Hot
Despite all the mess that Top Gear found itself in during the ill-fated season-that-just-finished, Matt LeBlanc’s performance as Chris Evans’ co-host was one of the show’s few bright spots. For a man who was once known for his preference in being driven than him doing the actual driving, LeBlanc’s time at Top Gear seems to have satiated his appetite for performance cars, a belief that has been reinforced by a recent photo of the actor-turned-motoring-show-host showing off his new Ford Focus RS.
The photo of LeBlanc looking like a proud new dad to his Focus RS was actually uploaded by Ken Block, who complemented LeBlanc’s choice for a new ride in the most Ken Block way imaginable. Yep, as if the fact that LeBlanc is the new owner of the fantastic Focus RS isn’t interesting enough, Block had to point out the Focus RS’s Hooligan-themed license plate case in what could arguably be one of the most obvious celebrity plugs on Instagram right now.
Be that as it may, LeBlanc’s choice of a Ford Focus RS to be his new ride is an exciting one, especially when you let your imaginations run loose on the things that the former Friends actor is capable of doing on a rather interesting car that belies its incredible power and performance capabilities.
For those who need a refresher, LeBlanc’s new Ford Focus RS comes packed with a 2.3-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine that packs an impressive 350 horsepower and 350 pound-feet of torque. It may not be the fastest and most powerful car that’s available on the market, but for what it’s worth, the Focus RS is arguably one of the most exciting ones to drive, something that LeBlanc appears to be all too excited to find out.
Continue after the jump to read the full story.
NASCAR is one of those uniquely American things, much like baseball, Mount Rushmore, and Chuck Norris. Oh, and corn whiskey, also known as moonshine, white lightning, and mountain dew. That’s where the popular motorsport got its start at least; rum runners evading the lawman in souped-up cars barreling down back roads like the Duke Boys. It was all in an effort to make a living off selling illegally brewed alcohol without paying taxes on it.
Over the years the illicit practice of rum running morphed into what is now the National Association of Stock Car Racing, attracting fans the world over to its high speeds and memorable drivers.
Earlier this NASCAR season, I had the chance at a behind-the-scenes look into the cars, pit crews, and drivers – all off the track but still turning wrenches and dressed in Nomex. Except for Aric Almirola, driver of the 43 car, I actually drove him around the track in the back of a Toyota Tundra. But those details are down below.
The best commercial in this year’s Super Bowl won’t even take place during the game, but don’t worry, it will most certainly have cars. NBC Sports has released its advertisement ushering in the 2015 NASCAR season, and it does so with the unwavering Americanism of Nick Offerman – meat connoisseur, wood craftsman extraordinaire and Ron Swanson.
In “America, It’s Time For A Gut Check,” Offerman brings his usual comedy and machismo with one-liners like “Sure everybody at NASCAR gets a trophy/As long as they win the f***ing race” and “Where men and women compete together/Just like they did back in the 18-nevers.” AdWeek says that a 60-second version of the commercial will air immediately after the game, but you can see the full-length version right now. Trust me, it will be the best two minutes you’ll spend today, and you don’t have to be a NASCAR fan to get a kick out of it.
The true point of the ad, of course, is as a promotion for NBC Sports, which picks up coverage of the 2015 season starting on July 5.
Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup season.
After a long wait, Ford finally revealed the 2015 Mustang to the world on the December 5, 2013. This time, Ford is going global with the Mustang making it available in multiple markets outside of the U.S.
Currently just a prototype, the 2015 Ford Mustang is not expected to arrive in showrooms anytime soon. That said, the first prototypes have been traveling the globe showcasing all that’s new about the pony car.
The 2015 Ford Mustang GT recently payed a visit to Jay Leno’s Garage. Starting with the Mustang 1, Ford embarked on a journey that created an world famous icon. The first production Mustang with chassis no. 0001 was also at Jay’s garage accompanied by the then CEO of Ford Motor Co.
A good history lesson then, before the 2015 Mustang rolled in and along came the Mustang Chief Engineer who worked on the project. This being a pre-production prototype, Jay did not get to drive it, though.
However, he did get the opportunity of cranking-up the 5.0-liter V-8 engine. And doesn’t she sound like sweet music.
Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 Ford Mustang GT
The movie adaptation of Go Like Hell already hasA-lister Tom Cruise in the fold and if recent reports are accurate, Cruise is set to be joined by another Hollywood heavyweight: Brad Pitt.
The two last co-starred in the 1994 movie Interview with a Vampire and the potential co-starring role will ignite a move that’s already being billed as a blockbuster adaptation of the A.J. Baime book that chronicled the rivalry between Ford and Ferrari during their glory years at Le Mans.
It’s already been reported that Cruise will be playing the role of Carroll Shelby in the movie with Joseph Kosinski sitting in the director’s chair. There’s been no mention of what role Pitt will play in the movie but if it’s any indication, it won’t come as a surprise if he stars as Ferrari’s very own patriarch, Enzo Ferrari.
It’ll be very interesting to see how the cast for Go Like Hell builds up. But with Cruise and possibly Pitt on board, it’s going to be one heck of a blockbuster.
Click past the jump to read the official synopsis of Go Like Hell: Ford, Ferrari and Their Battle for Speed and Glory at Le Mans
For those old enough to have witnessed the glory that was "Robocop" in theaters, you not only got to see an ultra-modern, crime-fighting machine, but you also got to see one of the most modern American cars of the era. That’s right, back in 1986, the Ford Taurus with its rounded body and fuel-injected V-6 was actually one of the most modern-looking and driving cars manufactured in the U.S. Sure, it fell by the wayside as the years went on, but nearly everyone that was around and not busy watching "Alf" or "Back to The Future" I through III still recalls the fanfare that the first-gen Taurus received.
There was so much fanfare that it managed to weasel its way into a supporting role as Alex J. Murphy’s car of choice. Well, the Taurus is once again one of the more modern American cars of its time, particularly the SHO model, and there is now a remake of "Robocop" in production. So we now have the perfect setup for a reunion of the two, and that looks to be what is going on, thanks to the savvy camera work of one person.
Above we have a late-model Taurus or what looks to be the SHO variety caught out in the open wearing obvious Robocop-esque duds. Could it possibly be that the "Robocop" of 2013 or 2014 will whip the same model its predecessor did in 1987? It looks mighty possible to us.
We’ll keep you updated as more information becomes available about this new "Robocop" car.
Ford Motor Company, Shelby American, and Ford Racing have come together to build a special one-off model to pay tribute to the man responsible for creating the iconic Cobra: Carroll Shelby. Called "Friends of Carroll," these companies, along with many others, have put together the Shelby GT500 Cobra, which is based off of the 2013 Mustang GT500, but with some tantalizing modifications.
The team began the build with the GT500’s 5.8L V8 engine which already produces 662 HP, then added a Ford Racing 4.0L Whipple supercharger that catapulted the power to over 850 HP! Keeping this beast safely on the road are 13" rear wheels wrapped around 345-section high performance tires, as well as new Shelby Wilwood brakes.
On the design front, the new Shelby GT500 Cobra was given a Shelby-designed hood, a new rear wide body kit, and new 20" wheels. The exterior is finished off with a Guardsman Blue paint finish and Wimbledon white stripes, as seen on the Cobra roadster of the ’60’s.
“Carroll Shelby changed the performance world forever,” says Luft. “And while he was proud of Shelby American’s achievements, Carroll was far more interested in the next car we build. You will find the spirit and influence of Carroll Shelby in every future vehicle we build as found in the rear wide-body kit and hood that has been integrated into the 2013 Shelby GT500 Cobra.”
The Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 Cobra will be touring across the United States and will eventually end up being auctioned off for charity.
The Ford Mustang Shelby GT500KR was officially launched at the 2007 New York International Auto Show where it was displayed as a celebratory piece for the 40th Anniversary of the original 1968 Shelby Cobra GT500KR. This car was so amazing, that Carroll Shelby himself grabbed up a model to put in his garage. Now, the model he drove can be yours as it will be put up for auction at Vicari’s 16th annual Biloxi Auction set to take place from October 7-14, 2012
Carroll Shelby’s car is painted in Ebony Black combined with a Satin Ebony Stripe. Only 236 units like this were built in 2009, making the muscle car a unique piece of machinery. The GT500KR is powered by a supercharged 5.4 liter V8 engine that delivers a total of 540 HP at 6,250 RPM and a peak torque of 510 lbs.-ft at 4,500 RPM. The car can sprint from 0 to 60 mph in just 4.3 seconds and runs the quarter mile in 12.5 seconds.
This is one of those rare opportunities where one lucky person can be the proud owner of a vehicle once driven by an automotive legend. It’s not going to come cheap, but it will be absolutely worth it.
The Dark Knight Rises has been heating up cinemas for the past few days, so it seems only fitting that with the last part of the trilogy in cinemas today, we take a look at one of the most enduring stars of the famed DC super hero movie franchise. No, we’re not talking about Alicia Silverstone’s Batgirl character from Batman and Robin. What we’re referring to is the Batmobile, the Dark Knight’s very own ride-of-choice.
In this section though, we’re going to pay tribute - we use that word loosely - to the five worst Batmobile replicas we’ve ever seen. Some are more eye-cringing than the others, but rest assured, none of them would pass the standards of Bruce Wayne.
Heck, we don’t even think the Joker would be caught dead riding in one of these so-called Batmobiles.
So here it is, folks. Prepare to cringe, laugh, or whatever emotion these pictures will do to you.
Find out TopSpeed’s five worst Batmobile replicas after the jump
After we lost racing and general automotive legend, Carroll Shelby on May 10th, a squabble ensued over his remains. His estranged wife, Cleo, claimed that she had the rights to his remains and the documentation that his children had, which requested that he be cremated and his ashes split between his children and his burial plot in Texas, was forged.
According to reports, Shelby had filed for an annulment of the marriage, citing that his wife had lied about her background and even her name, just before he died. Unfortunately, the annulment was not awarded posthumously, so it appeared as if the only other way to settle the dispute was in court.
Fortunately, the two sides managed to keep the case out of court by coming to an agreement on Monday and Mr. Shelby’s body will be laid to rest in the way that he requested, except for one minor compromise. The minor compromise is the fact that his estranged wife gets part of his ashes.
We’re glad to hear that the issue is settled, though we would have preferred to see his wife completely cut out of it. The most important thing, however, is that the issue is done and this legend can now be laid to rest peacefully and his children can hold their heads high that their father was laid to rest in the way he requested, though his son Michael says that they are still not happy with the results.
Every automotive enthusiast has heard about Carroll Shelby and knows about his huge contribution to the automotive industry. He began his racing career as an amateur, and in 1959, won Europe’s prestigious 24 Hours of Le Mans. In 1962, he tested his first Ford-powered AC 260 Roadster – the car that would become the Shelby Cobra. This was the beginning of his extremely impressive career, but unfortunately, on May 10, 2012, this legend died at the age of 89.
"Today, we have lost a legend in Ford Motor Company’s history, and my family and I have lost a dear friend. Carroll Shelby is one of the most recognized names in performance car history, and he’s been successful at everything he’s done. Whether helping Ford dominate the 1960s racing scene or building some of the most famous Mustangs, his enthusiasm and passion for great automobiles over six decades has truly inspired everyone who worked with him. He was a great innovator whose legend at Ford never will be forgotten. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends," said Edsel B. Ford II, member of the Board of Directors of Ford Motor Company and great-grandson of Henry Ford, founder of Ford Motor Company.
RIP Carroll Shelby. The automotive industry has lost an inspiration and will surely miss you.
Hit the jump to read more about key moments in the history of Carroll Shelby.
Jesse James is well-known for his romantic rendezvous behind the back of his then-wife and actress, Sandra Bullock, but before his sexual trysts became a topic of media concern, James was better known as the builder behind West Coast Choppers. Now it seems as though James is taking a break from infidelity and motorcycle builds to take his Hennessey GT1000 Twin Turbo for a bit of a rougher ride.
On a road that has been dubbed a "super twisty lane" by a source that was at the location, Jesse James lost control of his 1000 HP supercar and crashed it into a neighbor’s yard near his house in Austin, Texas. The funny thing about the incident is that Hennessey seems to be pleased with the incident. They spoke with fellow automotive site, Jalopnik, and stated, "It’s nice to know that Jesse drives his Hennessey GT hard enough to find the limit. After all, if you don’t crash or break every now and then you’re not going fast enough."
Jesse James seems to take a lot of things to their breaking point. At least his Henessey GT1000 is covered by insurance.
Reminder: The Hennessey GT1000 Twin Turbo is powered by a 5.4-liter supercharged V-8 engine that produces 1,000 horsepower at 6,600 rpm with a 0-60 mph time of 2.8 seconds, a quarter-mile time of 10.6 seconds at 142 mph, and an increased top speed of 245 mph.
For those of you who follow the Formula 1 racing series, the name Jenson Button should absolutely ring a bell. Button is a British Formula One driver currently signed to McLaren and as any other Formula 1 driver, his garage houses some of the most impressive vehicles on the market, including vehicles like the Nissan GT-R, Bugatti Veyron, and a variety of Ferrari models.
Another model he has enjoyed taking out and about is his Ford GT supercar. Until now. Button has just announced that the GT will be available for sale for anyone interested. It only has 3,500 miles on the odometer and is priced at £130,000 or about $203,000 at the current exchange rates.
When talking about his car, Button said: "It’s exciting to have such a rare and great vehicle in stock – this one is certainly in a league of its own. It’s a really good investment with the current value increasing by ten per cent each year, and since it was owned by Jensen Button, it’s perfect!"
We can’t blame him for getting rid of his Ford GT; his new ride will be a new McLaren MP4-12C.
Bark out vehicles like the DeLorean, Aston Martin DB5, and Pontiac Trans Am, and there’s a good chance you’ll be met with Back to the Future, any James Bond film, and KnightRider. There are just certain vehicles that stick in our minds as being the epitome of whatever big screen role they played. The 1973 Ford Falcon XB GT may also sit as part of the movie role elite as the Black Mad Max Interceptor in the Mad Max franchise.
Mad Max was a post-Apocalyptic, "western" type film that was released back in 1979. This Australian dystopian action film centered its attention around the breakdown of society, love, and revenge, and spawned two sequels in Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior and Max Max Beyond Thunderdome. And since every hero has a bad ass ride, Max Rockastansky - played by a young Mel Gibson - had the modified Ford Falcon XB GT featuring a 500 HP 5.8L V8 engine. This one ride sticks out in the Mad Max franchise, but is only one of a number of stellar vehicles featured in this trio of films. From a 150 HP custom built vehicle for Beyond Thunderdome to a 1,000 HP beast in Mad Max 2, the long list of featured vehicles were built to fill the needs of the renegade police officer and his rival gang members.
Now we hear that Director George Miller is off to the races yet again, working on Mad Max 4: Road Fury (2014), so we thought it would be appropriate to tackle a vehicular breakdown of Mad Max to prepare fans for the arrival of the new age Interceptor. Take in the ruggedness of the past, because the future Mad Max is going to be smooth.
Check out the rest of the infographic to get a more detailed breakdown of the vehicles from the Mad Max franchise and remember to check back with us for our next installment in the Car Infographics series.