Sure, most of the GT40s were actually built in the United Kingdom, but the program was handed over to Carroll Shelby, America’s greatest automotive designer.
The first GT40 prototype was shown to the public in April 1964, at the New York Auto Show, but new versions kept rolling off the assembly line throughout the year with several improvements. The car shown above and below, for instance, was bolted on a lighter steel chassis and raced at Le Mans the same year.
Repainted and fitted with a larger 4.7-liter V8, the GT/104 finished third at the 1965 Daytona before being retired by Ford. The race car was sold in 1971 and changed many private owners since then. Next month, the vehicle is slated to find a new home at Mecum’s auction event in Houston, Texas.
Wondering what’s so special about it besides being a classic? Well, the GT/104 is the fourth GT40 prototype, Ford’s Le Mans debut entry and the first of its kind to score a podium finish.
It’s also the second oldest GT40 in existence and has a full ownership history and it was driven by many famous drivers, including Phil Hill, Bruce McLaren, Bob Bondurant, Jo Schlesser and Richard Attwood. It has enough hallmarks to change owners for a seven-digit sum, but we’ll find out more about that next month.