Still a great track car?

ZRacerLE

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Now that the 500 has been out for a while and in the hands of some track rats, what's your opinion of it as a road race track car?

I'm still considering getting in to one. I just like to take next car decisions slow and let the truth work itself to the front and center.

Main things I'm wondering about is heat soak on hot days and consumables?

 

themik99

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I have absolutely zero complaints. The car has done everything I ask of it and more, and I'm amazed at how good it is every time I got out on track.

Up here in Michigan it doesn't get too hot, but I did have one track day at between 90 and 95 and have never had any heat-related issues. That said, I do try to do some extra cool down time (a couple of miles of driving) after I get off the track, but only because I'm paranoid about too much heat on the carbon wheels. The only guy I've seen have any heat problems was Goose17 (Tim) who probably has tracked his 500 more than anyone else. His issues were primarily due to the coolers getting clogged with debris or from getting impacted (bent fins), but his YouTube videos go through all of that and how he fixed them.

As far as consumables go, the only things I would really mention are fuel and tires. I primarily run at Gingerman, which is a flat 2.2 mile road course. Over the course of a day (6 or 7 20 min sessions in the advanced group) I go through about 60 gallons of 93 octane premium. My car is all stock. I've never had any issues with any other fluids (never had to top them off during or after a track day). As far as tires go, the Sport Cup 2's are good for about three track days for me, but I imagine if you are extremely aggressive you may get less out of them.

So...TLDR: I couldn't be happier with the car and how it performs on track!
 

Tomster

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No heat soak issues. Brakes last longer than the GT350R. You go though a tank of gas in 25 mins wide open. Tires are about to be expected for a 3900# car.

The car is fast, very fast.
 

themik99

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No heat soak issues. Brakes last longer than the GT350R. You go though a tank of gas in 25 mins wide open. Tires are about to be expected for a 3900# car.

The car is fast, very fast.
I second Tom's comments on the brakes. I've been very pleasantly surprised with pad life, especially given how strong the brakes are. No issues with fade either.
 

The Chairman

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I echo what others have said. Have about 4500 miles on the car: most of that to/from or on the track. Only issue was the SC Pulley failure (under warranty).
COTA is probably the hottest track environment with most days well into the 90’s and some over 100*. I’ve have zero temp issues. Will likely follow Goose17’s approach and clean the coolers over the winter here in south TX.
Brakes are awesome and have never faded, even braking down from 160 many times per session.
I did take the GT500 to a smaller 1.9 mile course once, and that was no fun. Won’t do that again.
 


Tomster

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The Chairman

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Don't you have a GT350 for that?
Exactly. Thought I’d try the GT500. That was a bad idea for a smaller track.
Going to that same track on Wednesday and taking the GT350 this time! Need to see if I can still shift a manual…
 

Tonymustang302

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No heat soak issues. Brakes last longer than the GT350R. You go though a tank of gas in 25 mins wide open. Tires are about to be expected for a 3900# car.

The car is fast, very fast.
one of my new friends i met at a track is turning his stock 2020 gt500 into a full gut track car. I’ll be seeing how that turns out and if i will do it on mine or buy a dark horse R when it comes out
 

Goose17

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The base model is an excellent track machine. The CFTP dials it up to 11! The car, as delivered, is essentially heat proof on a road course. You won’t have power loss due to heat soak nor will you experience brake fade. I did have tranny overheat issues as well as engine oil too hot. As Mike mentioned though, these issues were from a clogged tranny cooler (debris in the fins) and bent fins in the oil cooler.

As for consumables… it’s a 4100 lb car with monster brakes and 760hp. In the spirit of Coneheads, it consumes mass quantities! COTA is a big, high speed track. My foot is to the floor much of the track there. I absolutely drain the tank in 20 minutes at COTA. Less crazy tracks might see 25 or even 30 minutes before the tank is empty (depending on aggressiveness). For tires, 4S will last longer than cups, which last longer than Hoosiers. Cups are 3-5 days, but you’d have to be real ginger with the car to get 5 days.

Re brakes… stock brakes are amazing. At 8k miles, I’m on my 8th set of pads. If you stomp them to reel in the beast, you will go through pads. I recently switch to Hawk Performance pads… they are next level and quite a bit more impressive than the Motorcraft pads.
 
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ZRacerLE

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The base model is an excellent track machine. The CFTP dials it up to 11! The car, as delivered, is essentially heat proof on a road course. You won’t have power loss due to heat soak nor will you experience brake fade. I did have tranny overheat issues as well as engine oil too hot. As Mike mentioned though, these issues were from a clogged tranny cooler (debris in the fins) and bent fins in the oil cooler.

As for consumables… it’s a 4100 lb car with monster brakes and 760hp. In the spirit of Coneheads, it consumes mass quantities! COTA is a big, high speed track. My foot is to the floor much of the track there. I absolutely drain the tank in 20 minutes at COTA. Less crazy tracks might see 25 or even 30 minutes before the tank is empty (depending on aggressiveness). For tires, 4S will last longer than cups, which last longer than Hoosiers. Cups are 3-5 days, but you’d have to be real ginger with the car to get 5 days.

Re brakes… stock brakes are amazing. At 8k miles, I’m on my 8th set of pads. If you stomp them to reel in the beast, you will go through pads. I recently switch to Hawk Performance pads… they are next level and quite a bit more impressive than the Motorcraft pads.
Thanks for the info. I enjoy watching your videos and you getting faster and faster around COTA.

If I pull the trigger, I'm actually thinking base car with after market forged wheels (about 20lbs vs the 17lb cf wheels, so not bad) and go wider on rubber, maybe 315 front, 325 to 345 rear.

Once I got bored, I'd go even bigger aero than cftp, spherical bearings, and stiffer springs to match the aero.
 

Wolvee

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If you want to Autocross, it's the wrong car for you. Big track is where this car shines. It just wants to RUN!

I'm 99.9% sure I'm going to sell my '21 soon. I just have to work up the nerve to accept the fact that, I'll never have another awesome car like this again. It's the best Mustang ever made for sure but I don't drive it the way it wants to be driven. (990 miles on it now.) I think I'm going to get a 68-72 Nova for Ice Cream and Autocross.
 
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ZRacerLE

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If you want to Autocross, it's the wrong car for you. Big track is where this car shines. It just wants to RUN!

I'm 99.9% sure I'm going to sell my '21 soon. I just have to work up the nerve to accept the fact that, I'll never have another awesome car like this again. It's the best Mustang ever made for sure but I don't drive it the way it wants to be driven. (990 miles on it now.) I think I'm going to get a 68-72 Nova for Ice Cream and Autocross.
I actually sold the ZLE to buy a dedicated race car that I'll use for autox, time trials, and practice. Car weighs 1150lbs wet. It should be extremely fast on small to mid size tracks... and super cheap on tires and brakes.

I'm now looking for a fun, occasional track car (with at least two seats) that I can take passengers in now. It might be converted to a time trial car eventually as well.
 

DopamineQuest

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one of my new friends i met at a track is turning his stock 2020 gt500 into a full gut track car. I’ll be seeing how that turns out and if i will do it on mine or buy a dark horse R when it comes out
I wonder how light you could make a new 500.....Car would be absolutely insane even if it were just like 3500 LBS, closer to 3k (don't even know if that's close to possible) would be INCREDIBLE.
 

Tonymustang302

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I wonder how light you could make a new 500.....Car would be absolutely insane even if it were just like 3500 LBS, closer to 3k (don't even know if that's close to possible) would be INCREDIBLE.
the problem is no one makes aftermarket parts for road racing the gt500. Cortex racing had one as a development, but i havent seen anything since 2020 moving the project forward.

a serious gt350 racer i know had a 2020 cftp turned it into a track car and sold it 3months later for his 3rd gt350r saying the 500 is too heavy.

im just going to do front camber plates, rear upper control arms (cant disclose from who :inlove:) to get maximum camber and forged rims 325’s square with more rear aero to see what this thing can do
 

 
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