What's is it?
Here’s a novelty: a first drive of a car that isn’t being made any more. Ford GT production stopped last autumn, in fact, but there are still a few unsold in the States and Roush Engineering, Ford’s engine development partner for the GT project (read: they made the motors), decided it wasn’t quite done with it. So it is taking ten of the last ones and upping their poke from 550- to 600bhp. This is not your usual run-out special edition.
Now, the last time I drove a Ford GT, it didn’t occur to me that it needed more power. Roush, however, has extracted 600bhp at 6200rpm and 550lb ft at 3800rpm from the car's 5.4-litre V8. The major mechanical change is a smaller pulley for the supercharger and a smaller belt to go round it. Ergo, the rotor spins faster, forces more air into cylinders, and gets a bigger bang out the other end. Easy. There’s also a freer flowing Tubi exhaust and an uprated transmission-oil cooler.
Other mods include a plaque on the centre console, stickers on the flanks if you want them, new sill kick-plates and arguably the horniest wheels on the planet. Body colour? It depends what’s left: all ten 600 REs are being sold through Avro Motor Cars of Brooklands off their existing order bank. Last week five were left, in black, red and tungsten body colours.