Shelby Cobra GT500 'King of the Road' will roar into New York
2 April 2007

We know what you're thinking; 475bhp sounded like more than enough power for Ford's fastest Mustang. Not to Ford, it seems. The Blue Oval will be rolling out a 540bhp version of its American icon at the New York motor show later this week that promises to take pony car performance to an unprecedented level.

The fire-breathing Mustang will be called the Shelby Cobra GT500KR, the latter two letters standing for 'King of the Road', just as they did with the 1968 GT500KR.Under the bonnet is a revised ignition system, a new throttle calibration and a new intake system that, combined, are estimated to boost power and torque outputs to 540bhp and 510lb ft, and within a whisker of the outputs of the now-discontinued Ford GT supercar.

In parallel with a stronger engine, the KR gets a longer final drive ratio (which should give it a higher top speed than the GT500) and short-shift manual gearbox lever. It's also got a chassis that's even stiffer than the GT500's; "it leans more heavily towards all-out handling ability than the GT500," said chief engineer Jamal Hameedi, "while still making it drivable on the street."

You'll be able to spot the KR by some even more outlandish exterior styling than that of the GT500. Highlights are a scooped carbonfibre composite bonnet held down with race car style twist-down hoodpins, a deeper front air dam and 14in Brembo front brake discs.

The GT500KR will be available to customers in the US in spring 2008. It'll be produced in a run of just 1000 models.

Read Autocar's review of the Ford Mustang GT500

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