Volk Wheels

Like Johnny from Cobra Kai said, “The Cobra’s a badass snake with no mercy.”

And the Shelby GT500 is totally badass. It’s fast. It’s dangerous. It makes moms run & scoop their kids off the sidewalk. 

I passed-by a local high school during football practice, and the football team literally stopped mid-huddle & stared. The band broke into Motley Crue. Cheerleaders dropped other cheerleaders. And I’m pretty sure one of ’em got spontaneously pregnant. The GT500 is an American icon & a real attitude problem. 

It’s an absolute sledgehammer… but with true sports car accuracy & agility.

And it’s probably the most badass thing that happened to America in the last couple years… except for the fact that you can’t get it with a manual transmission. Although I will admit (and it’s hard to admit lol), the 7-speed twin-clutch is pretty awesome in this car. I kinda loved it. But to contradict myself yet again, theres just a connection to the car that’s undeniably lost without the manual trans… especially on the street during more mild driving. Here’s what I mean: I ran the GT500 back-to-back with my own vintage air-cooled 911 & swapped Honda CRX. The GT500 was thrilling because it’s mega faaaast & intense. But somehow my gutted/swapped CRX is just about as thrilling with the same feeling of OMG intensity… but with only 1/3 of the power/acceleration lol. And the vintage 911 is not nearly as fast or intense as the GT500. But it has a sports car analogue purity over the GT500… an exhilaration that’s found in snatching of the next gear, anticipating the engagement, and letting it rip & wind out.  

My point is, as technologically undeniable & fast as the 7-speed dual-clutch is, I feel the GT500 leaves something on the table by not offering a manual transmission. At least for the drivers who want to engage more with the car & truly feel the Shelby/Cobra lineage. 

The engine in the GT500 is a supercharged 5.2 V8.

Ford ditched the high-revving flat plane crank of the GT350. The flat plane was super cool & old school-trick. It allowed the 350 to rev fast & high. But it didn’t make as much low-end torque, and vibrations were a problem apparently. The GT500 goes back to cross plane crankshaft, still a 5.2, but supercharged… adding gobs of low-end horsepower & torque. Both are awesome; the new one is faster. 

Even though the GT500 is a sledgehammer with 760hp and a weight of 4,200lbs… it feels agile & very connected to the road.

It’s well-sorted & predictable. The GT500 does not handle like a muscle car, it handles like a sports car. A very very powerful sports car.

Buuuut just because you don’t feel the weight in the chassis, doesn’t mean it’s not there. With more weight & more power… comes the need for more tires & more brakes & more cooling & more overall cost & consumption. That’s just reality. But c’mon, if you wanted to do more with less, you’d buy a Miata. The GT500 is all about doing more with more!

Engine: 5.2 supercharged V8

Power: 760hp / 625tq

Weight: 4,200lbs