The Ford GT MK II Is The Incredible Supercar You'll Never See On The Street

You probably know by now that the iconic Ford GT40 of the 1960s was born out of spite. In 1963, Henry Ford II (or Hank the Duece), then chairman and CEO of the Ford Motor Company, was looking for ways to revitalize the automaker after struggling with failed products (like the Ford Edsel) and intense competition from American rivals Chrysler and General Motors (per Forbes). Ford general manager Lee Iacocca convinced the Deuce that the answer was to make a Ford sports car, but there was a problem.

Ford never intended to build a sports car, and there were no sporty vehicles in the brand's portfolio. The fastest route to Ford's goal was to buy a company that makes sports cars. Henry Ford II set his sights on the Italian automaker Ferrari, which at that time was predominantly a racing team that sold street-legal versions of its popular racing cars. Ferrari founder Enzo Ferrari was eager to make a deal with Ford, according to Forbes, but Ferrari had a change of heart at the last second: He was unwilling to relinquish control of the automaker's racing program.

Adding insult to injury, Ferrari said he'd never sell to "an ugly company that builds ugly cars in an ugly factory" and added that he thought Henry Ford II was inferior to his grandfather, the late Henry Ford. Hank took the blows, but his counterpunch was to build a sports car that would humiliate Ferrari at the Le Mans 24 Hours.

Ford GT40 MK II: Spirit of Le Mans

The Ford GT40 was born in 1964, but it wasn't until 1966 that the MK II GT40 took first, second, and third at Le Mans to beat Ferrari. The modern Ford GT entered the market in 2005, and the second-gen variant took the streets in 2016. But in 2019, Ford debuted the GT MK II at the Goodwood Festival of Speed, a more hardcore version of the vehicle with 700 horsepower and an eye-watering $1.2 million base price. This machine also pays homage to the Le Mans-winning GT40 MK II and the automaker's GT race car that won Le Mans in 2016.

The Ford GT MK II is what happens when Ford engineers and Multimatic Motorsports are assigned to create a car with zero restrictions — the purest essence of the second-gen Ford GT. It starts as a standard Ford GT, and each vehicle goes to Multimatic in Ontario, Canada, to undergo its MK II transformation. 

"The GT Mk II unleashes the full performance potential of the Ford GT without any artificial performance limitations dictated by racing sanctioning bodies," said Hau Thai-Tang, Ford chief product development and purchasing officer. "It's the closest GT owners can get to the Le Mans-winning performance and exhilarating feeling of crossing the finish line in the Ford GT race car."

Racing Credentials

The 2019 Ford GT MK II has the same high-strung 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 engine as the standard car. However, the engine pumps out 700 horsepower, 53 more than the roadgoing Ford GT and about 200 more horses than the GT racing car. Power goes to the rear wheels via the same seven-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox, but the Mk II has a recalibrated gearbox for heavy track use. The engine has an innovative air-to-air outboard mounted charge air cooler with water spray technology, a device that sprays atomized water onto the charge cooler. It also gets a roof-mounted air intake to complement its giant dual-element rear spoiler, rear diffuser, and front splitter.

Meanwhile, the GT MK II's fixed and lowered ride height is courtesy of DSSV dampers with five-way adjustable damping, helping save about 200 pounds of weight over the standard GT's suspension. Brembo carbon-ceramic brakes peer behind 19-inch forged aluminum wheels garbed in sticky Michelin Pilot Sport GT racing tires. The changes allow the Ford GT MK II to produce 400% more downforce than a regular Ford GT. Inside, it has a custom Sparco racing seat, six-point racing harnesses, a MoTeC data logger, and a reversing camera. The front passenger seat is optional.

For Track Use Only

If the optional front passenger seat, the giant rear spoiler, and the Ford GT MK II's hardcore vibe are not enough of a set of giveaways: you're looking at a non-road-legal supercar, the biggest reason you'll never see it on the streets. It's not suitable for professional GT racing, making it an exclusive track-only driving weapon. "The MK II answers the regularly asked question of how would the car perform with all the limitations lifted: the answer is spectacularly," said Larry Holt, Multimatic Chief Technical Officer.

With a starting price of $1.2 million, the Ford GT MK II is a genuinely expensive toy. Ford and Multimatic only made 45 units of the GT MK II, another reason you'll hardly see it on any race track around the globe. Ford commemorated the GT's final year of production this 2022 with the Alan Mann Heritage Edition. If you missed out on the GT MK II, the latest and last Ford GT is available for sale to approved GT customers for upwards of $500,000.