The Complicated Calculus - Selling Your Car For The GT500

Discussion in 'Shelby GT350 Mustang' started by 50 Deep, Nov 1, 2019.

  1. 50 Deep

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    After my 4 hours of fun at the GT500 Track tour I was planning to put pen to paper, or finger to keyboard, about the technical aspects of the GT500. After reading a few of the magazine reviews about the car I realized there are others with far more automotive experience that can accomplish that task better. The essential question we are all asking ourselves is will you sell you current Ford to obtain one? Having owned a GT350, GT350R, and Whippled Terminator I want to present to you my thoughts on the matter. These are my angles, and many things are left to consider. Please share your thoughts when you finish reading this, as it may help others.

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    The GT500 is many things. One thing I can confidently say that it wont be, is a disappointment. There is a concert of systems working in harmony to make that car exquisite to drive. Anyone that currently owns a GT350 will have that same special feeling and shit eating grin when you get inside of it. On track the CFTP manages weight, body roll, turn in, grip, throttle application, shifts and everything else without you thinking about it. On the drag strip it makes launching a simple process without you thinking about it. Set a lap record without breaking a sweat then go enjoy a nice charcuterie board in between sessions.... Remember that thought until later...

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    When you think about combat effectiveness, or picking the right tool for the job, the A7 from Tremec makes complete and total sense. With contenders like the Hellcat and ZL1 LE there would be too much margin for error with a manual if your ultimate goal is to demolish everything else currently on the street. Not only to demolish, but to give customers of all skill levels the ability to harness the power on tap no matter what performance situation they enter into. I spoke with a Tremec engineer at the event and quickly mentioned the epitome of manually shifting automatic transmissions, the Porsche PDK. It was made clear that much effort was put into benchmarking against that transmission, and making this one even better. They did it, although experience with the transmission on the street in traffic is an unknown. If anyone here has been in a high horsepower manual car you know with great power, comes great responsibility. Power management out of an apex or off the line is a constant battle, and often costs you time. I did not think the automatic transmission would be rewarding, but it definitely was. The Whippled Terminator I had was an absolute beast, but really took a skilled driver to extract the most from. The car was either roasting the tires or roasting the tires anytime I put that foot to the floor. I do not foresee that being the case here, and that is a benefit for everyone driving it. The A7 is not only a win for the car, but a win for all of us that want to see the GT500 on the top of the food chain.

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    HOWEVER, there are many factors about performance car ownership that many never discuss. The ability to fit your kids and wife inside for a trip to cars and coffee. The point of diminishing returns with modifications. Dreading a trip because being caught in traffic will give your left knee atrophy. Tossing the keys to your wife so she can take the car to work and not be in fear of stalling out on the driveway into the office. New enthusiasts that would be too timid to push the car because a stick shift is intimidating. Enthusiasts with a little more mileage on their bodies and cant manage a stick shift anymore. This level of accessibility and versatility makes the GT500 a big win, but will also bring many more buyers into the pool.

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    As I took the 600 mile drive back home from Vegas I didn’t feel as though I was missing anything in my GT350R. Several other vehicles pulled out cameras and the driver of a Dodge truck chased me down to get a closer look. Downshifts with a quick rev match to pass big rigs was satisfying at my core. The looks, rarity, and balance of the GT350R made me happy with the woman I married. Knowing that when GT500 production gets fully underway there will be plenty of them in production and at dealerships. Aside from the CFTP, exclusivity and ADM wont be the name of the game for long.

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    My brief time in the GT500 was amazing. What stuck in my mind the most was my feeling of detachment while on track. That previous thought about exquisite management of all the systems, it also was what made me feel a little disconnected from the whole experience. Kind of like when your wife tells you to lay back and let her do all the work. Undoubtedly fun, but I still want to put in a little work.....sometimes. It’s my only criticism, but its not the GT500’s fault. My brain and testosterone filled need to feel like I am the one controlling the car is what holds me back. That will be the basic question you need to ask yourself before you make the move. Are you ready to fundamentally change your mind about what performance driving is like without a manual. Those that are ready will not be disappointed. Those that are not ready, still wont be disappointed, but you may want to keep 6 gears nearby for that occasional fix.

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    This closing statement is not made to knock any other variant of Mustang on the road, or to seem elitist about the GT350R. It just happens to be the top dog Mustang at the moment. Anyone who has switched from the GT350 to the R knows the cars are different, and even modifications to a GT350 wont necessarily get you there without some financial investment. The limited production, factory aero, and magazine reviews make the R a car of obsession and desire. It’s performance is renowned and envied by other car enthusiasts across the board. If you have a GT350R because you enjoy analog driving input from a manual I do not think selling your current car for the GT500 is the best move. The 500 is amazing, but not such a different feeling than what you have. The control and linear power application built into the GT500 because of the A7 still makes it feel similar to what the GT350R does with the manual. Words do not quite describe the satisfaction of when you heel-toe downshift into the apex, but also wont be enough to wash away the feeling of getting passed by a GT500 right after you hit the straightaway. Getting a slightly used base GT500 to mod how you want would be my advice for R owners. Buying both would be ideal if you got it like that, or if you are mentally ready to let the third pedal go.

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    If you have a GT350 or other built Mustang though......This GT500 is hella hella fast like VTEC duuu, and you probably wont beat it. Try to build your own and it will likely cost you more with little to be gained in resale. The GT500 is hungry, and equipped with a proper driver and sticky tire it will eat most cars at any event. I can almost guarantee if you best the GT500 in any arena with equal tire compound you probably beat the driver, and not the car. If you did beat the car, chances are you had to give up so much utility in every other arena that the GT500 still wins at being more versatile. Built or bought. Driver skill or the car. Perhaps none of it matters if you are winning. If you own any other variant of performance Mustang short of the R and have the financial ability to afford a GT500, I would be selling my baseball card collection, cancelling the built motor, selling all my spare parts, and calling MSRP dealerships until my fingers bled. First startup and WOT pull will leave you with no regrets.

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  2. 03reptile

    03reptile Well-Known Member

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    An accurate and fair evaluation! I was all set to order a new GT500. The lack of the six speed manual and to a lesser extent, the base price, cemented my decision to trade my 2013 GT500 for a new 2019 GT350. I haven't looked back in that decision since getting the new car. Regardless of the abilities of the DCT, I would miss the personal connection I enjoy with any manual transmission vehicle. All the praises heaped upon the DCT's have merit, and for those who are comfortable with driving a two pedal sports car, good for you. But for me, I choose to remain in a driving world where the few skills I have mastered with a manual transmission car are there to be enjoyed each time I depress the clutch.
     
  3. TDC

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    #3 TDC, Nov 1, 2019
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2019
    You have some great comments there and summarize well. The GT500 will obviously out lap and out drag a GT350. It is the top dog Mustang right now and may be for well into the future. But the increased weight, lack of manual, IMO less enjoyable exhaust note, clunky look in the front and bland side profile reduce any desire to replace my GT350; especially considering my 90% track use / 10% road use mix. More power is not what I feel is needed for the track. Reduced weight on the other hand is what I’d really crave from the Mustang. The attraction of a lighter more nimble track car is the main driving factor whenever I think of selling the GT350.

    Besides the aesthetics, for a street car daily the GT500 is an easier yes for me but waaaaay overkill for that price.
     
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  4. 3star2nr

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    Personally I wouldn't trade a GT350 or a GT for a GT500. It's better to pay off the car you have and finance the GT500 and add it to the collection.

    If you buy your cars cash it's better just to buy it. The reason I'm suggesting this is this is a first year car, this is ford, you really need to wait a year or 2 and let them work out the kinks or wait for the R model or revamp.

    Also if you own a gt350 you are going to regret selling it in a few years... The gt500 doesn't have a boosted voodoo from my understanding it's the regular gen 3 motor that they used as the base, so the gt350 is still a very very special car. I think a gt350 will always have collector value.

    If you own a GT. Then u know it's the best daily driver money can buy right now... You dont want to daily a gt500
     
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  5. mavisky

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    Terrance,

    Thanks for the right up. One thing I noticed and that your images really exaggerate is the front wheel offset. It was mentioned during the development and launch of the GT500 that the front fenders were even wider than the already widened GT350 front fenders, yet the car uses the same wheel and tire widths up front. From your photos, especially the last two, it's pretty obvious how far inside the front wheels sit on the GT500. I was curious if you had a chance to speak with the engineers about this at all given your background and focus on perfect wheel fitment. Was this an aero based decision to? a requirement of the GT500 fender vents that got nixed during development? I've never seen anyone directly explain the reason for the even wider than wide fenders.
     
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  6. RugbyRef

    RugbyRef Well-Known Member

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    Excellent write-up! Not trading in or selling my '19 GT350...waited too long to get it. I like the 500...A LOT...but I think, I too, will give it a year or two for the bugs to work out (if there are any).

    Kyle (in the previous post) brings up a good point about the front offset on the GT500. The wheels do seem a little too much tucked in for my taste...interested to know if you did discuss this point with the engineers.

    Cheers!
     
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  7. SVTinAR

    SVTinAR Well-Known Member

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    I'm basically more of a straight line acceleration guy than a road course guy so I guess ultimately the GT500 is what I should aspire to. But I would really miss the manual transmission as automatics are just boring in daily use. Also would have to go with all black to somewhat disguise the large mouth bass front end.

    Thanks for the write up.
     
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  8. FLETCshooter

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    I went from a Z06 to a CTS-V and regretted every moment of not having a manual. Yes on the back bumpy road the CTS-V was easier to drive versus the Z06, but never again! So for me the GT500 is a big NO!
     
  9. DCShelby

    DCShelby Well-Known Member

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    The two CTS-V's I had were manual.
     
  10. cosmic charlie

    cosmic charlie Well-Known Member

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    Good write up. Pretty much nailed it. Obviously it's an awesome car but I couldn't see getting out of a three pedal car for one. The initial ADM's will be ridiculous. And it is a big heavy car.
     
  11. FLETCshooter

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    Like a dumb ass, I ordered mine and wanted to be like an adult. So I sold my 2008 Mustang Bullitt and 2008 Z06 for the CTSV. FYI- I need to add Sport (2014 CTSV-Sport) to that, I just kept it short.
     
  12. activeGT

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    I am confused why the 'bland' fenders without the side 'scoop'. That's part of the package that makes the GT350 different from the GT. 350.500.jpg
     
  13. firestarter2

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    I have to replicate this. Quite frankly a 75K mustang does not appeal to me. I wish my GT350 was lighter and frankly smaller so a heavier car with more power doesnt make much sense to me. Ill wait to see track reviews if the GT500 though 750 HP is going to be a fast car on a track but it might not be as enjoyable.

    I do find the idea of a base R appealing. But when I got my car a base R was 62k.

    Actually to be fully transparent id never spend 100k (Id want the track) on a mustang no matter how good it was
     
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  14. mavisky

    mavisky Well-Known Member

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    Based on this thread it looks like GT2RS/Viper ACR style fender vents were considered but ultimately decided against. That late hour decision may have kept it from adopting a GT350 style vent. Interesting that they decided to go with no vent at all. Perhaps the larger hood vent and splitter fences on the CFTP were enough to negate the benefit from a fender vent.

    https://www.mustang6g.com/forums/threads/so-fender-vents-were-considered.130800/
     
  15. Schwerin

    Schwerin Well-Known Member

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    i'm just gonna kick back and wait for someone to put a GT500 engine in a 350 or 350R, or to swap the center stack to put a manual in the 500. People are already doing this with the Supra.
     
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