Ford continues to throw more hints at teasers at us about the upcoming GT350. Last week they released the first two in a series of five videos about the GT350, although they’re not officially saying that name yet.
The latest video reveals perhaps the most yet as Ford execs talk about this mysterious vehicle. First off, forced induction and EcoBoost. Ford’s Jim Farley says in video three (the video at the top of this story) “I think that turbocharged engines, the EcoBoost, the forced induction, really did change things for us.” This could be a hint that something big is coming. Could the GT350 be wearing a supercharger or turbocharger?
If we had to put our money on it, we’d say turbocharged. Here’s why. These videos are packed with vague, black and white passes, where light passes over components. One of these components is very similar in shape and appearance to the standard Mustang GT intake manifold. That doesn’t mean it’s the same manifold however, this shape can just about only be intake manifold runners, and it’s a very familiar shape to our eyes. Obviously this intake configuration likely wouldn’t be used with a supercharger, at least from the factory.
There also seems to be more to this engine than just a standard Coyote. This could be the flat-plane crank Voodoo engine that has been rumored for some time now. This clue comes from another quote within the video, “We knew we wanted to be extremely free revving, wanted to have low inertia, obviously develop a lot of horsepower, and develop a lot of horsepower per liter, so be efficient, and also be lightweight.” says Ford’s Raj Nair.
Remember back in 2012 when Ford showed off a twin turbo Cobra Jet at the SEMA Show? The blue oval seldom does a design or engineering exercise just for the sake of doing it. Such work is time consuming, and costly, it also pulls engineers away from other projects. Obviously such parts never ended up in the FRPP catalog, so we have to wonder, were they testing the packaging and limits of the Coyote engine under such conditions for an upcoming project? We’re leaning towards a yes. There’s another image here that we can’t identify. There’s an outside chance this could be the flange or part of a turbo system. It doesn’t look like anything we’re familiar with, initially we thought part of the emissions equipment, EGR, DPFE sensor, etc. We’ve just about ruled that out after studying the image. Unfortunately, Ford did a great job obscuring things and we can’t enhance it to give us more detail.
This all leads us to wonder, could Ford be about to combine turbos with a flat plane crank engine, making one super exotic powertrain? We’re not sure, the clues certainly say it could be about to happen. There are two things that throw us off that path and the first is a shot of the exhaust. While it shows catalytic converters which indicate this is a street going vehicle, not some exotic racer, the shape of the exhaust would seem to indicate traditional supercharged or NA V8. Then again, we can’t be 100-percent certain because the video is so vague. It could be the exhaust routing was kept very close to the same as a standard NA V8 with the downpipes dumping to this location, that would make routing and packaging a bit easier.
The second item is the brief glimpse we get of a wide angle view under the hood. Look closely at the coolant reservoir, and then to the right. We were able to bring up the lighting some in this image. The intake elbow is seen here, and it looks very stock Mustang GT. This includes what looks to be the side of the throttle body in that shot. This takes us back to either a naturally aspirated or supercharged engine, not turbocharged. Then again, that air intake could be coming out of the intercooler or feeding into a turbo. We can’t be certain.
The rest of the video is full of some other cool features, including hints at Brembo brakes, carbon fiber used the hood at least, and Recaro seats inside. The Ford execs continue throughout the video to comment that everything on the car is functional, and that enthusiasts are going to love it.
The finale of this video is quite possibly the best part, and its what is heard not seen. The rumble of this engine. Whatever it is, it sounds angry at idle, and we have to wonder based on the exhaust pulses of this verses a typical Mustang GT, is this the sound of an aggressive exhaust note after being fed through a turbo, or the sound a flat plane crank Voodoo engine, or both. We’ll know for sure on 11/17.