Ford has finally unveiled its highly anticipated endurance racer at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Based on the new Ford GT, the 2016 Ford GT GTE will compete in both the FIA World Endurance Championship and TUDOR United SportsCar Championship. In the FIA WEC the new Ford GT GTE will compete in the GTE-Pro category which ranks just below the Le Mans Prototypes.
Ford chose the 2015 24 Hours of Le Mans as the ideal location for the live unveiling of the new GT racecar. The American carmaker has a rich history in Le Mans that boasts of four consecutive wins from 1966 to 1969. The 1966 24 Hours of Le Mans is the most memorable for Ford as they scored a 1-2-3 win with three Ford GT40 Mk1’s.
The Ford GT racecar is powered by the new 3.5 liter V6 twin-turbocharged Ford EcoBoost engine. Ford Performance claims that the new racecar will being smart innovations to GTE-Pro once it starts competing. Among those innovations include new aerodynamics that ensure maximum downforce with minimal drag and efficient stability. It features an exceptionally light chassis thanks to the new lightweight composites and carbon fiber.
Since its debut at the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship in 2014, the new 3.5 liter V6 twin-turbocharged Ford EcoBoost engine has won several races including the 12 Hours of Sebring and Rolex 24 At Daytona. As for the Ford GT racecar, its first race will be the Rolex 24 At Daytona in January 2016 before venturing into the FIA WEC season.There will be four cars in total fielded by Chip Ganassi Racing and Felix Sabates.
Speaking about the new Ford GT, Raj Nair, Ford Motor Company Group Vice President, Global Product Development and Chief Technical Officer said: “As we developed the Ford GT, from the outset, we wanted to ensure we had a car that has what it takes to return Ford to the world of GT racing. We believe the Ford GT’s advances in aerodynamics, light-weighting and EcoBoost power will make for a compelling race car that can once again compete on a global stage.”
Visit our 2015 Le Mans Live Blog here to view live images of the 2016 Ford GT GTE from the 2015 24 Hours of Le Mans.