Ford Creates The GT Supercar to Test Technologies For Future Vehicles
the ford ‘GT’ supercar is designed to win races plus serves as a test bed for new technologies and ideas for future ford vehicles. these technologies include ‘GT’s’ hydraulic suspension, which changes ride height at the turn of a lever adjusting drive modes. the suspension lowers the car from ‘normal’ mode into ‘track’ mode – a 50 mm difference the driver can see and feel. ‘track’ mode raises the wing and closes the front splitter ducts, delivering downforce for spirited, closed-course driving. when the ‘GT’ changes modes from high to low ride height, changes in spring rates, matching damper settings, and active aerodynamics, come together to create two cars in one.
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the ford ‘GT’s’ role as a platform for testing technology is present throughout the supercar, with some innovations, such as carbon fibre lightweighting, serving as longer-term possibilities, while others are in production today. a key goal for the production team was to reduce drag and optimize downforce – giving the supercar stability and grip on the track while accelerating, cornering, and braking. ‘GT’s’ aerodynamics change on demand to meet varying driving conditions, with moveable elements around the body, including special ducts in the front, and a large deployable wing. these open and close depending on whether the wing is up or down, so the car remains aerodynamically balanced from front to back at all speeds. when the wing is up, the ducts close to increase downforce; when the wing is down, the ducts open to decrease downforce.
the supercar’s wing includes a patent-pending design that changes the shape of the aerofoil for maximum efficiency when fully deployed. the unique design also includes a small gurney flap which, when combined with the shape change, results in a 14 per cent improvement in overall efficiency. the compact six-cylinder design of the car’s ‘ecoboost’ engine aids ‘GT’s’ aerodynamics, plus allowed the team to taper its fuselage to more efficient dimensions than a larger V8 configuration engine would have allowed.
ford is working with partners to develop new ways to enable faster, high-volume production of carbon fiber parts in the future. the ‘flying buttresses’ extending from the roof to the rear bumper would not be possible using steel or aluminum because of the limitations in conventional metal stamping. yet, carbon fiber can be shaped into complex geometric designs because it is cut to a specific shape as a cloth and strengthened by curing at a high temperature.
the ‘GT’s’ 3.5 liter ‘ecoboost’ engine delivers a ferocious 647 horsepower. to further improve engine performance, the supercar features a new port and direct dual fuel-injection setup, enhancing engine response. the engine is paired with a responsive seven-speed dual-clutch transaxle for near instantaneous gear change, providing exceptional driver control.