Drive Type: -
Model: Model A
Sun City, California, United States
True story: Last fall, I had the opportunity to spend a week with Ford's new 2013 Shelby GT500 - the Blue Oval's factory Mustang with 662 horsepower and 631 pound-feet of torque. It's an amazing beast, to be sure. I'm not sure if it was Michigan's damp streets strewn with potholes and wet leaves, but at no point did I ever say to myself, "You know, Ford is on to a really good thing here, but what it really needs is about twice the power." And yet, for people in warmer climes with infrastructure in better nick - or for those whose muscle cars live their lives out on the track, there's apparently sufficient demand to warrant just such a beast.
Quick studies will recall that Shelby American launched its 1000 last year to commemorate its 50th anniversary, but it is returning to the New York Auto Show with a fresh version based on the 2013 GT500 I drove. The 2013 Shelby 1000 whips up 1,200 horsepower on pump gas thanks to beefed-up forced induction, engine internals and cooling. Wisely, it also incorporates an adjustable suspension and big brake package to make sure those ponies have the best chance being safely deployed to the ground.
What price the world's most powerful "production" muscle car? $154,995 for starters - donor GT500 not included. What, no convertible variant?
During a drifting session at Irwindale Speedway in California, Ken Block made a boo-boo that would send a number of drivers immediately back to the infield. But there's an answer to "What do you do when you bash the wall while drifting and your wheel explodes?" and there's completely different answer when the question begins with the phrase, "When you're Ken Block..."
Instead of us telling you how Block handled the calamity in his Ford Fiesta competition car, you can watch it happen in the video below. You can probably also guess what it is - but it's more fun to watch.
When one speaks of sporty and fun-to-drive utility vehicles, few would put the Ford Explorer in the same category as the Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT8, BMW X5 or Porsche Cayenne. Yet, with just a few reservations, I'd toss the new-for-2013 Ford Explorer Sport close to that arena for consideration.
As a recap, the sportiest of Explorers is fitted with Ford's twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter Ecoboost V6, making 365 horsepower and 350 pound feet of torque. Acceleration is brisk (figure about 7 seconds to 60 miles per hour), as power goes to all four wheels through a six-speed automatic transmission. Contributing to its more athletic demeanor are larger front brakes, a sport-tuned suspension, chassis upgrades, quicker steering ratio and a more aggressive wheel/tire package. Cosmetically, the Sport is distinguished by its blacked-out lights, black trim and noticeable lack of chrome (with the exception of the door handles).
Ford recently handed me the keys to a Ruby Red Metallic Explorer Sport. Rather than mindlessly drive the big seven-passenger all-wheel drive hauler in soccer mom circles around Los Angeles, I loaded up my family and embarked on a long weekend road trip to Yosemite National Park.