For 116 years, Ford Motor Company has been among the largest auto-makers in the world, with stakes in numerous other companies. The pattern of innovation that started with the introduction of mass production and continued throughout their every iconic model has made Ford an irrefutable influence on the global automotive market. Though every car the company has released exudes quality, it's in the performance models that the pinnacle of their engineering is displayed.
Despite being known for producing affordable quality cars in virtually every area, there's also a wild side to the Ford brand - one that willingly released monsters like the Shelby Mustangs, Cobras, or even experimental race cars onto the public. Today, we list some of the most badass and freaky models to ever hail from this incredible brand.
10 1966 SHELBY COBRA 427 Super Snake
The Shelby Cobra is one of the most iconic and renowned classic convertibles ever created. However, the 427 Super Snake is no ordinary Cobra. You see, only two of these have ever been manufactured, and one made headlines in 2007 being sold for a whopping $5.5 million. It was driven by the car's creator, Caroll Shelby himself.
The badassery of the 427 Super Snake doesn't stop there, though: this classic monster features a 7.0L V8 sending a stampede of 800 horses to the rear wheels. That's right, in a 53-year old classic car. Now, consider what this kind of power does to the Cobra's featherlight 2550-lb frame ...a 3 second 60-mph dash and a record-breaking top speed of 165 mph.
9 Ford Mustang Boss 429 1969
The "429" stands for this Mustang's engine displacement in inches, while the "Boss" marks its status on the road. In the late 1960s, there was really almost nothing like the Mustang 429 in terms of power or capability. Unfortunately, the model was discontinued in 1970 with only 1356 units ever produced, which makes this car so rare and valuable that it's able to fetch hundreds of thousands of dollars from the right buyers.
The original 429s are advertised (only advertised) at 375 horsepower and an even more impressive 450 lb-ft of torque, while the mystery of how much power the massive engine actually puts out remains a part of this car's charm.
8 2019 Ford Mustang GT
With the new Mustang GT, Ford has created one of the most well-rounded and fun modern muscle cars that won't really break the bank. With a sweet retro-focused design, it successfully captures the feel of the classic Mustang while introducing modern features such as Ford's EcoBoost engine, cameras, and 4.2-inch infotainment display.
As for the GT's performance, it's more beastly than ever, courtesy of a 460-horsepower 5.0L V8. Kudos really needs to be given to Ford for the new EcoBoost engine's ability to produce incredible amounts of torque (420 lb-ft) while significantly improving fuel efficiency. With this kind of power to the rear wheels, the new GT will hit 60 in just 4.2 seconds.
7 1964 FORD GT40
To say that the Ford GT40 is iconic would be an understatement. This single car model forever cemented both the model and the Ford brand itself as synonymous with performance in the eyes of automotive enthusiasts globally. The GT40 owes its fame to the 24 Hours of Le Mans race, as the American car that managed to put European contestants such as Ferrari to shame.
Featuring a 7.0L V8 capable of powers in the range of 500 horsepower, the GT40 will easily accelerate to a top speed of over 205 mph. The car's legendary status and timeless design provided inspiration for its revival in 2004, with the Ford GT and the subsequent 2017 Ford GT that is still shredding the tarmac to this day.
6 1964 FORD FAIRLANE THUNDERBOLT
If you've never heard of the Thunderbolt, we don't blame you. Only 100 have ever seen the light of day, as the car was produced as a limited-edition drag racing version of its road counterpart, the Fairlane.
It's truly special. This dragster was fully street legal, despite packing a massive 7.0L V8 such as those found in straight-out NASCAR race cars. This meant it could crank out at least 425 horsepower. It will do a quarter mile in just over 10 seconds, by which point its speed would have already climbed to a ridiculous 132.65 mph: faster than almost any modern supercar.
5 2017 Ford GT
$450,000... That's how much you'll have to set aside if you wish to ride around in one of these. This car continues the supreme performance tradition set by the legendary GT40 over five decades ago. The controversial V6 (instead of the trademark V8 always featured in Ford muscle cars) completely justifies itself by giving enough performance to render this car a straight-out street legal race car.
The new GT still retains design cues inspired by the GT40, while introducing a myriad of state-of-the-art technology features that allow the 3.5L V6 to produce 647 horsepower (much more than the previous model's 550-horsepower from a 5.4 V8). Weighing just over 2700 lbs, it's able to use that power to reach 60 mph in under 2.9 seconds and go on to achieve a 216-mph top speed.
4 1968 Ford Shelby GT500KR
You might have noticed the "KR" behind the famous GT500 badge. This stands for "King of the Road." If that's not indicative enough of the car's competence on the road, perhaps its 7.0L V8 will convince you.
In fact, the car was designed to be the most powerful mustang ever created, yet there's no consensus on the true horsepower it was able to put out. Regardless of its true capabilities, though, one thing's for sure: with just over 1200 units of these ever produced, it's a rare classic beast.
3 2018 FOCUS FOCUS RS
Moving away from the classic muscle cars featured on this list, the new Focus RS is an incredible compact sports car that deserves its own spot. In fact, the RS is currently one of the most popular and desirable hot-hatches on the market. A big reason for this is its incredible performance, courtesy of a generous 350-horsepower 2.3L engine that makes the ballpark $40,000 price tag seem not so expensive after all.
With that kind of power being sent to all four wheels, the 4.7-seconds to 60 come at no surprise to anyone. Also, as you may have guessed, the "RS" initials stand for Rally Sport, which says a lot about this car's competence when taken off road as well.
2 2019 Ford Shelby GT 350R
The regular GT350 already deserves to be dubbed badass, but the suffix "R" really takes things one step further. As you might have guessed, the GT350R is the model's fully track-ready, racing trim. The differences are subtle but significant. To achieve optimum track performance, the GT350R's equipped with stiffer springs, and carbon fiber wheels, grill, and rear wing, while any unnecessary features that sacrifice weight were stripped off.
The engine remains the sturdy, hand-built 5.2L V8 churning out 526 horsepower. However, with these enhancements, the GT350R weighs 100 lbs less, which translates to a 0.2-second faster 60-mph dash, at 3.9 seconds.
1 2020 Ford shelby gt500
The most powerful car that Ford is currently producing is not the GT350R or the Ford GT. No, their flagship model is none other than the new Shelby GT500, churning out 760 horsepower. This power comes courtesy of a 5.2L V8, which allows it to dash to 60 in about 3.5 seconds.
For the 2020 model year, the GT500 looks meaner and more aggressive than ever, so if badass is what you're aiming for, this is the ride for you.