The new Ford Mustang GT Shelby 500 from Ford is a 700-horsepower monster Ford says is the fastest road legal Mustang in history.
The car is a big statement from a company that is less than a year ago said it plans to sell almost exclusively cars in North America over the next few years. If Ford implements these plans, the Mustang would be the last traditional passenger car in its lineup.
The GT500's mighty 700 horsepower engine may well compete with the 707-horsepower Dodge Challenger Hellcat, which has created a lot for the Dodge and the Fiat Chrysler overall.
The GT500 is not intended as a high-volume car, but could prove valuable as a "halo vehicle" to get the brand moving, said IHS Markit analyst Stephanie Brinley.
"The GT500 is essentially a road-to-lane car for the Mustang, not unlike the Challenger and Charger Hellcats," she said. "So it's a small volume, but big excitement … It's clearly important to get people excited about your brand and your vehicles in general, whether you buy a commercial vehicle, a sedan or a sports car Make a statement as long as it fits the brand. "