2020 Ford Bronco R Race Prototype
The 2020 Ford Bronco R is a concept vehicle that Ford created to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the first-gen Bronco’s historic Baja 1000 win from 1969. Unveiled ahead of the 2019 SEMA Show, it’s the first real life incarnation of the modern Bronco and it previews a production crossover that will arrive in 2020.
The 2020 Bronco R was unveiled alongside the first-gen Bronco that Rod Hall and Larry Minor drove to an overall win 50 years ago at the 1969 Baja 1000. It features a similar livery, so it makes it easier to draw a design parallel between the two. The concept is fully functional and will be used as a test bed for the Bronco’s production drivetrain. The 2020 Bronco R will also be raced by Shelby Hall, the granddaughter of the late Rod Hall, at the 2019 Baja 1000.
2019 Ford Fiesta R2 Rally Car
Poland-based rally racing outfit M-Sport has launched the Ford Fiesta R2 rally car; it’s ride-of-choice for the 2019 WRC Junior Rally Championship. The new racer is the first car to be designed and built from M-Sport’s new facility in Krakow, Poland. It’s also the first racer to be built to the latest R2 specifications. Further adding to its list of “firsts” is the distinction of being the first Ford-backed rally car built out of the new-generation Fiesta. All competitors in the 2019 WRC Junior Rally Championship will compete in this car. The winner of the series will be promoted to the WRC2 series where they will compete in a Ford Fiesta R2 in the 2020 season.
2019 Ken Block’s F-150 Hoonitruck
When Ken Block unleashed the original Hoonicorn back in 2014, we went just a little bit of crazy. And why not? With an all-carbon widebody paying homage to the ’65 Mustang, a race-spec AWD system, and 845 horsepower from a 410-cube race-spec V-8 with velocity stacks rising more than a foot out of the hood, it was pretty much the perfect machine for grabbing eyeballs on the Internet. Now, Block and the Hoonigan team have once again managed to one-up themselves. The latest is called the Hoonitruck, and it’s bigger, more powerful, and crazier than the original Hoonicorn.
Like the Hoonicorn, the Hoonitruck took about two years to build. This time around though, the machine is “based” on a 1977 Ford F-150. And by based, I mean the Hoonitruck employs the same general shape as the factory pickup. That’s it though, as everything else is custom-built to put on a tire-killing speed show. The Hoonitruck is now headed for a starring role in the tenth iteration of Block’s über-viral Gymkhana video series, but until then, read on for all the details on this wild new smoke factory.
2019 Ford Mustang Cobra Jet
The Mustang Cobra Jet is now known as Ford’s factory-built drag racer, but the "Cobra Jet" badge was actually created for a 7.0-liter V-8 engine back in 1968. This is also the year when the Blue Oval produced 50 lightweight Mustangs for the said engine and shipped six of them to Holman Moody and Bill Stroppe to be prepared for NHRA racing. Fifty years later and Ford is celebrating the event with a special-edition Cobra Jet model.
The first Mustang-based drag racer since 2016, this Cobra Jet comes with all the goodies you’d expect to find on such car. There’s a revised body that looks similar to the facelifted sixth-gen model, skinny wheels up front and fat tires to the rear, a competition-spec interior, and a massively supercharged V-8. Making things even better, it’s the quickest and most powerful Mustang that Ford has developed specifically for drag racing in history.
Continue reading to learn more about the Ford Mustang Cobra Jet.
2017 Ford Fiesta WRC
Ford ushered in a new generation of the Fiesta for 2017, with a focus on new looks, lots of interior amenities, new drivetrain options, and a desire to be the absolute best hatchback out there. As is the usual case with sporty little hatchbacks that go through a generational change, the new model is also making its way into sporting events, and in this case, we’re talking about WRC. The model you see here is M-Sports fighter for the 2017 FIA WRC season, and it comes complete with all of the goodies afforded by new FIA regulations that allow more power, better performance, new technology, and a unique look for each car.
According to the accompanying press release, 95 percent of this WRC racer has been designed from scratch and, while it’s based on the road-going Fiesta, there is little about this car that is stock. It’s got 380 horsepower on tap, new fully adjustable suspension, and at least 35 liters or 1.23 cubic feet of energy-absorbing foam over the current model. M-Sport’s Managing Director, Malcolm Wilson OBE, Said, “Entering a new era in the FIA World Rally Championship, there is a real sense of excitement throughout the team, and rightly so as I believe we have created something extremely special in the new Ford Fiesta WRC. Having driven the car myself, I can honestly say that it is one of the most impressive we have ever produced. It’s exciting to drive; it sounds fantastic, and it looks absolutely sensational.”
With that said, M-Sport has clearly put a lot of work into its WRC racer for the 2017 season, so let’s dive on in a take a better look at it.
2017 Shelby Mustang FP350S
Unveiled for the 2015 model year, the sixth-generation Ford Mustang is the first of its kind to feature an independent rear suspension. It’s also the first ’Stang in more than two decades to feature a turbocharged four-cylinder engine after Ford added a 2.3-liter EcoBoost to the already familiar 3.7-liter V-6 and 5.0-liter V-8. Additionally, the sixth-gen pony is the first-ever global Mustang, being sold in dealerships in Europe and Asia, as well as certain countries in Africa and Oceania. Much like its predecessors, the current Mustang also spawned a number of higher performance Shelby versions and race-spec models.
The Shelby FP350S is the latest to join the Mustang stable of track-only cars. Developed by Ford Performance, it’s the third race-spec version of the sixth-generation Mustang, alongside the IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge championship-winning Shelby GT350R-C and the recently unveiled GT4. The new race car is heavily based on the Shelby GT350R-C and will help the new Mustang expand in other racing series’, including the Trans Am (TA3 and TA4 classes), the NASA (National Auto Sorts Association), and SCCA club racing (T1 and T2 categories).
“Our goal has always been to provide those who want to race with equipment that enables them to compete and win,” said Dave Pericak, global director of Ford Performance. “Shelby FP350S is our latest example.”
The new Shelby FP350S will go on sale in 2017 and will be made available through Ford dealerships throughout the United States.
Continue reading to learn more about the Shelby Mustang FP350S.
2017 Ford F-150 Raptor Placed Third At Baja 1000 In Stock Full Class Competition
Ford can mark another completed race in its Baja 1000 history book thanks to the 2017 F-150 Raptor. The 49th running of the SCORE Baja 1000 concluded on November 20 after a grueling 854-mile race from Ensenada, Mexico down through the unforgiving deserts in the Baja peninsula and back again. The Raptor team scored a third place victory in the stock full class competition, crossing the finish line with only 52 seconds to spare. The official time was 35:59:08.151.
For those unfamiliar, the Baja 1000 is a race against the clock, navigating the terrain, and to simply finish. The time to beat is 36 hours. Though the Raptor barely squeezed by, it still finished the race. What’s more, the truck when drove some seven hours and another 400 miles east to Phoenix, Arizona – the home base for the team from Foutz Motorsports.
“That’s why the new Ford F-150 Raptor is bad-ass!” said Greg Foutz, the team leader of Foutz Motorsports. “It’s a race-proven off-road monster that can race off-road an entire weekend, then take you and your friends on a road trip the next day.
Two of the five competitors in the stock full class didn’t finish. Second place with to a Toyota Land Cruiser with a time of 32:28:37.068 and first place with to the legendary Rod Hall and his Hummer H1 with a time of 32:13:58.914.
It’s a good thing the 2017 F-150 Raptor finished the race since Ford has hinged the Raptor’s marketing on the truck’s ability to tacked desert terrain at high speeds. Don’t forget, the Raptor even has a Baja mode performance setting. It would have been hard to patch that public relations image hole.
Anyway, congratulations, Ford and the guys from Foutz Motorsports on the Baja 1000 finish.
Continue reading for more information.
2017 Ford Mustang GT4
Unveiled in late 2013, the sixth-generation Mustang arrived just in time for the nameplate’s 50th anniversary celebration. Redesigned inside and out, the new Mustang kept some of the retro cues of the previous model, but gained an overall sportier design and a more compact appearance. More importantly, it became the first ever Mustang to use an independent rear suspension and the first ’Stang in decades to have a turbocharged four-cylinder engine.
Not only a legendary pony car, the Mustang is also an iconic racer. The legacy began with the Shelby GT350R built for the SCCA in the late 1960s and continued with the Trans-Am Boss 302 in the 1970s. The previous-generation brought the FR500 and Boss 302R, which have won several races and championships, while the sixth-gen model spawned the GT350R-C, a championship-winning car after only a few months on the race track. At the 2016 SEMA Show, Ford unveiled the second race car based on the current Mustang. It’s dubbed GT4 and was specifically developed for the FIA GT4 class.
Based on the Shelby GT350R-C that won its class this year in the IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge, the Mustang GT4 is eligible for the Grand Sport class of IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge, the Pirelli World Challenge GTS, and European GT4, among other racing series’. The race car will be made available for the 2017 season and will compete against GT4-spec version sof the Aston Martin Vantage, BMW M4, Chevrolet Camaro, KTM X-Bow, Porsche Cayman, and McLaren 570S.
Continue reading to learn more about the Ford Mustang GT4.
2017 Ford Fusion Sport Ballistic Concept by Webasto Thermo and Comfort North America
The SEMA auto show traditionally attracts a who’s who list of aftermarket companies and, in some occasions, these tuners collaborate with automakers to build some nifty concepts that consumers would probably otherwise not see in any other auto show. Such is the case with this particular concept vehicle prepared by Webasto Thermo and Comfort North America for Ford’s resident four-door sedan for the masses, the 2017 Ford Fusion.
Known mostly for building roof air-conditioning and heating systems, Webasto stepped out of its element in designing and developing this particular program. There’s a full menu of upgrades to the Fusion, from the exterior, interior, powertrain, and right down to the sedan’s chassis. The result may not be evident based on the single rendering of the car so far, but the modifications are impressive enough to give the Fusion a sportier and more performance-oriented identity.
Like most SEMA offerings, Webasto’s Fusion Sport Ballistic concept is unlikely to translate into a production unit anytime soon. But it does provide unique possibilities for the Fusion that owners and prospective customers probably didn’t know it had. It may not have the status and appeal that other Blue Oval models have, but it is more capable than most people think. This concept proves that, and then some.
Continue after the jump to read the full review.
2016 Ford Focus RS RX By Hoonigan Racing
At the end of Ken Block’s last Gymkhana video, Gymkhana 8, we were left hanging with a teaser of “Ken Blocks Ford Focus RS RX.” It featured an outrageously wide body kit with blacked out headlights and vents all over the place. But it raised an interesting question: Just what the hell is a Focus RS RX? Was it the “hardcore version” of the RX we talked about back in November of 2015? Well, it kind of is, but don’t expect it to show up in dealerships anytime soon.
We would love to see Ford produce a production version of the RS RX (you’ll see why later on in this review,) but for now, it looks like the only people lucky enough to get their hands on one will be none less than Ken Block and Andreas Bakkerud – Block’s new teammate. As it turns out, Hoonigan Racing Division will have official factory support from Ford for the 2016 WRC racing season. And with such, comes the most extreme variants of the Focus we’ve seen to date.
As you would expect, the cars used by Block and Bakkerud won’t feature that boring gray livery we saw at the end of Gymkhana 8. Instead, the cars each feature a unique livery put together by international graffiti artist Felipe Pantone.
In a recent press release, Block was more than happy with what Ford Performance did with the RS, saying “I’m really happy to be expanding my relationship with Ford Performance. To have official factory support for my race season in 2016 and beyond as I enter the FIA World Rallycross Championship full-time is absolutely incredible. It opens up a ton of powerful resources that myself and my team will be able to benefit from in terms of engineering prowess, research, development and racing experience from different fields. Plus, have you seen the car that they’ve created for me to go race in? My mind was blown when they showed it to me in Dearborn a few months ago. I absolutely cannot wait to get behind the wheel and start testing.”
Of course, if Ford Performance dropped one of these babies in my lap, I’d be ecstatic too. So, let’s take a closer look at the most extreme Focus ever made. You won’t believe the kind of performance boasted by the Focus RS RX – it’s truly out of this world.
Updated 07/11/2016: Ford dropped a new video showing the new Focus RS RX scoring its second World Rallycross victory with Andreas Bakkerud behind the wheel. Hit "play" to watch the video!
Continue reading to learn more about the Ford Focus RX By Hoonigan Racing.
2017 Ford F-150 Raptor Race Truck
Months before the all-new 2017 Ford F-150 Raptor hits showrooms, Ford Performance is entering a race-ready version into the 2016 Best in the Desert off-road racing series. The truck will compete in the Factory-Stock class, thanks to only a minor handful of modifications past the standard Raptor.
“The all-new Raptor has the DNA of a Baja race truck, with a purpose-built engine, chassis, and suspension that enables it to travel fast over challenging desert landscapes or crawl over rocky terrain,” said Jamal Hameedi, chief engineer at Ford Performance.
Despite Hameedi’s accolades, this specially prepared Raptor utilizes the same 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6, 10-speed automatic transmission, transfer case, and Torsen differentials. Even this race version of the Raptor rides on the same frame as the production version. This speaks volumes about the 2017 Raptor’s ruggedness right from the factory.
Modifications do exist, of course, but mostly deal with safety. A full roll cage and racing seats with harnesses line the interior, while LED light bars light the way at night. A fuel cell, Lowrance GPS, Racepak digital dash, and data logger allow the truck to pass inspection.
Ford Performance did upgrade the suspension, though not heavily. Race-optimized front and rear springs raise the ride height for extra ground clearance and increased suspension compression. The Raptor’s new Fox Racing shocks were swapped for Fox Racing’s race-specific three-inch diameter shocks with external bypasses, both up front and out back.
“This is the most stock truck I’ve ever seen in my time building Ford race trucks,” said Greg Foutz, owner of Foutz Motorsports, Ford’s truck builder and primary race truck driver. “Without custom technology or other modifications, this all-new Raptor is ready to prove the toughness and performance in the Best in the Desert series.”
Keep reading for the full rundown.
Continue reading to learn more about the 2017 Ford F-150 Raptor Race Truck.
Ford has had a predictable history when it comes to the debut of its Nascar race cars. Back in 1968, Ford launched the Production version of the Ford Torino, and right around the same time, it dropped the Nascar variant of the Torino. In 2006, it did the same dual launch with the Fusion. In 2013, Ford decided to repeat history again and release the 2013 Ford Fusion and the Nascar variant right around the same time. This year, at the Detroit Auto Show, Ford did it again with the 2017 Fusion, and it’s Nascar variant.
This new Nascar Fusion shares a lot of looks with the production model, but according to Ford, the interior has also been refined, bring a better and more comfortable interior to the driver. Dave Pericak, the global director of Ford Performance said, “Aerodynamics are more important than ever in this sport at the speeds these cars are running, so we used some of the best wind tunnel and computational fluid dynamics technology available to help create this new Fusion, and, fortunately, the Ford design team gave us a great vehicle to work with from the start.”
The Fusion race car hasn’t had that long of a history in Nascar, as it became the brands flagship racing model back in 2006. Since then, however, the car has been upgraded to meet Nascar regulations. These upgrades include things like running on an ethanol blended fuel and switching over to electronic fuel injection. With this new model, the biggest change comes in the form of a new digital dashboard system, which is required by Nascar regulations for this year. We’ll talk more about that a little later, so let’s dive in and see what we’ve got here.
Updated 01/21/2016: Ford dropped a new video in which it highlights the development of its latest Fusion NASCAR race car which will make its track debut next month at Daytona Speedweeks. His "play" to watch how a 750 horsepower race car is being built.
Continue reading to learn more about the Ford Fusion NASCAR.
The arrival of the 2015 Ford Mustang not only brought many changes to America’s iconic muscle car, but also gave rise to several questions as to what high-performance models would be built around it. There’s been a lot of talk about several Shelby nameplates being dropped with the new generation, but although the 2013 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 has yet to receive a successor, Ford did roll out a 2016 Ford Shelby Mustang GT350 model and a more track-focused 2016 Ford Shelby Mustang GT350R that promises to become the most potent Mustang on the race track. Now, Ford has also unveiled the GT350R-C, which replaces the previous-generation 2013 Ford Mustang Boss 302 in the IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge.
The new muscle racer is set to make its first official track debut at Watkins Glen on June 27th and will continue to race in the remaining six events of the 2015 season through September. The race team will be managed by longtime Ford partner Multimatic Motorsports, while the cars will be driven by Billy Johnson, Scott Maxwell, Austin Cindric, and Jade Buford.
“Ford is committed to the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge and we’re very happy to be campaigning its product here,” said Larry Holt, team principal, Multimatic Motorsports. “We like the endurance format, and the racing is always intense. The cars must be fast and reliable, and there are always at least 10 contenders running door-to-door for two and a half hours. It is the perfect home for the GT350R-C.”
Updated 06/29/2015: The new Shelby GT350R-C made its racing debut this weekend during the qualifying session for the 2015 IMSA. With a lap-time of 2 minutes, 1.358 seconds - the new GT350R-C grabbed itself a pole position for its first race!
Continue reading to learn more about the Shelby GT350R-C.
Ford launched its Fiesta R2 program back in 2010 to help young and inexperienced drivers learn the ropes of rally racing and move their way up the ladder in the sport. From the R2, the ladder moves drivers up to the Fiesta R5 and later up to the RS WRC, but they must first master this lower-powered rig, and dominate all the other drivers that Ford is testing. For the 2015 racing season, Ford has launched a new Fiesta R2, and it debuted the model at the Geneva Auto Show.
This new subcompact rally rig features Ford’s award-winning 1.0-liter EcoBoost engine, but its wick is turned up beyond its standard 123-horsepower mark. This small-displacement, "relatively" low-powered engine is a great jumping-off point for up-and-coming rally drivers, as it helps them focus on controlling the car rather than reining in a super-powerful engine.
Continue reading to learn more about the 2015 Ford Fiesta R2.