Positive response on the auto show circuit in 2002 helped persuade the company to produce the car in limited quantities, and the first production versions appeared in 2005. It is a very high-performance, two-seater vehicle with a strong styling resemblance to its racing ancestor and performance to match. The powerplant is a mid-mounted supercharged 5.4 litre V8, producing 550 horsepower (410 kW) and 500 foot-pounds force (680 N·m).
A British company, Safir Engineering, who made continuation GT40s in the 1980s owned the GT40 trademark at that time, and when they completed production, they sold the excess parts, tooling, design, and trademark to a small Ohio company called Safir GT40 Spares. Safir GT40 Spares licensed the use of the GT40 trademark to Ford for the initial 2002 show car, but when Ford decided to make the production vehicle, negotiations between the two failed, and as a result the new Ford GT does not wear the badge GT40. It is rumored that Safir GT40 Spares asked $40 million for the rights, but this has never been verified. The partners at Safir GT40 Spares state they have correspondence from Ford declining Safir's $8 million offer. Early cars from the 1960s were simply named "Ford GT".
Production and sales
The GT was produced in model years 2005 and 2006, with the first customers taking delivery in August 2004. The GT began assembly at Mayflower Vehicle Systems in Norwalk, Ohio and was painted by Saleen in their Saleen Special Vehicles facility in Troy, Michigan. The GT is powered by an engine built at Ford's Romeo Engine Plant in Romeo, Michigan. Installation of the engine and manual transmission along with interior finishing was handled in the SVT building at Ford's Wixom, Michigan plant.
Of the 4,500 GTs originally planned, approximately 100 were to be exported to Europe, starting in late 2005. An additional 200 were destined for sale in Canada. When production ended in 2006, the full planned lot of 4500 were not produced. Approximately 550 were built in 2004, nearly 1900 in 2005, and just over 1600 in 2006, for a grand total of 4038; however, the final 11 car bodies manufactured by Mayflower Vehicle Systems were disassembled and the frames and body panels sold as service parts.
As with many highly desirable new vehicles, when the Ford GT was first released, the demand severely outpaced supply, and the cars initially sold for premium prices. The first private sale of Ford's new mid-engine sports car was completed on August 4 , 2004 , when former Microsoft executive Jon Shirley took delivery of his Midnight Blue 2005 Ford GT. Shirley earned the right to purchase the first production Ford GT (chassis #10) at a charity auction at the Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance Auction after bidding over $557,000.
A few other early cars sold for as much as a $100,000 premium over the suggested retail price of $139,995 (Ford increased the MSRP to $149,995 on July 1, 2005). Optional equipment available included a McIntosh sound system, racing stripes and forged alloy wheels adding an additional $13,500 to the MSRP. An enthusiast website, FordGTprices.com, tracked sales and production numbers, and published up-to-date best-pricing advice, based on tracking the prices of successfully completed eBay auctions of the cars. By June 2005, retail sale prices had dropped to around $10,000 to $20,000 over MSRP, and in August 2005 several new GTs were sold on eBay for no more than the suggested retail price.
The production run of 4038 GT's ended the 2006 model year on 21 September 2006 , short of the originally planned 4500. The Wixom Assembly Plant has stopped production of all models as of May 31 , 2007 . Sales of the GT continued into 2007, from cars held in storage and in dealer inventories.Article; Wikipedia Ford GT Article