Tedward Drives the Brutal Shelby GT500, It's Not the Experience He Anticipated

Tedward Drives the Shelby GT500 15 photos
Photo: Tedward
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Looking back at my early years of becoming addicted to fast cars, I've always had a thing for Ferraris and Japanese sports cars. While I wasn't necessarily crazy about muscle cars, still to this day a video of a 2003 Kenne Bell Mustang haunts my dreams. And while I've chosen the path of turbo rotaries, I would always be down to drive a supercharged V8-powered vehicle.
And so when I noticed Tedward had gotten his hands on the new Shelby GT500 I became curious as to what it feels like to just be rolling around public roads in a 760-horsepower pony car. Is it a bit overkill considering all the bumps, potholes, and series of bad drivers you come across every day? Or is it the perfect stepping stone to having close to 1,000 horsepower available at your right foot, without having to pay supercar money for it?

There is never enough horsepower... just not enough traction

The car he's gotten a hold of is finished in Grabber Lime, and I'm honestly sad to see that this is no longer an option for 2021 customers. So if I do manage to come up with $80,000, I'll have it in Grabber Yellow thank you very much! Right off the bat, he's happy that the car he's about to drive doesn't come with the expensive Carbon Fiber package, which should provide a more worry-free experience.

Before getting behind the wheel we get to see a quick tour of the car, as he points out some of the aero parts and the outrageous brakes, which are more than necessary because this car can hit 60 mph (97 kph) from a standstill in just over 3 seconds, while its top speed is not far from 200 mph (322 kph). It does look like this vehicle has been fitted with the Recaro Leather-Trimmed with Miko Suede Seats, and I can only imagine how nice it must feel to sit in these when going for a spirited drive.

Tedward drives the Shelby GT500
Photo: Tedward
He points out that the best way to start this car is by leaving the door open, so that you may get the full Shelby GT500 experience, provided by the typical muscle car V8 rumble. We get to see a glimpse of the engine bay, as it's being brought up to working temperatures. As he leaves the parking lot he praises the DCT gearbox, mentioning it provides a very docile and overall pleasant driving experience.

Real cars don't power the front wheels, they lift them

Something that is instantly obvious is how smooth this car is when being driven normally. For anyone who has ever experienced a highly tuned vehicle, you might be aware of how jerky the drive becomes when fiddling around with the standard manufacturer setup. But with these factory-built sports cars, there has been an emphasis on providing a pleasant and comfy experience, should you not be in the mood for driving like a maniac.

Fully aware of the poor grip conditions provided by the average American roads, he opts for a rolling acceleration up to 60 mph, instead of performing the standard test from a dig. He goes for it from 1st gear at 15 mph (24 kph) and he is almost instantly up to 3rd at 70 mph (113 kph). And what makes it even crazier is that he wasn't even doing a wide-open throttle pull, but just up to 85% or 90% instead. As he merges onto the highway, he points out that you've always got to budget for tires with the way this car pulls.

Tedward drives the Shelby GT500
Photo: Tedward
It doesn't take long for him to see how fourth gear feels like, which results in the need to blur out the speedometer. This reminds me of how much more careful you need to be with your throttle inputs when driving cars this fast because your first speed ticket might just have you sitting on the side for a while. This is not the experience he anticipated, as he praises the performance of the vehicle, all while realizing the cost of driving such a machine: 145 miles (233 kph) to empty with an almost full tank.

It is more fun to drive a slow car fast, than to drive a fast car slow

He seems very excited about the gearbox, and it does look like a smooth transition even when going full throttle. He makes a valid point by mentioning that the traction control is "literally saving my life", as you wouldn't want to be left alone with 760 horsepower to the rear wheels in day-to-day traffic. The performance figures are a central theme of this drive, as he time and time again points out that this GT500 can close gaps in traffic as very few cars can.

There's also a reference to the reaction some people had initially when the car was launched, about the fact that there's no way you can get a third pedal in this. He simply points out that by driving this car you will begin to appreciate the fact that it is fitted with a DCT, which makes the task of driving this thing to the limit a little less daunting.

Tedward drives the Shelby GT500
Photo: Tedward
As he's driving around, we get to see some of the differences between the driving modes and thank God for the Quiet mode, which should be good enough for you to park it outside of your house without upsetting all of the neighbors. The Drag Strip mode is something that might come in handy if you're a quarter-mile (402 meters) regular, or if someone just happens to look down on you at a stoplight- not that I would encourage such a thing!

Ford has thought about everything with this car, and the Slippery Mode seems like the safest option for going out when it's snowing or raining outside. You don't want to be caught off guard in an RWD car with this amount of horsepower, that's for sure! After seemingly endless praising, we do get to hear about another downside, which is quite obvious: you're not going to be able to access all that power anywhere, or at least in most places unless you're a Texas or Florida resident.

Another valid point is that you might be able to go faster around public roads in a Subaru WRX STI for example. But in a Shelby GT500, there's always that scary thought in the back of your mind that you might lose the back end and crash in the process. We get to see several third and fourth gear pulls, and the central theme of this test drive seems to be, as Tedward emphasizes: "This is so fast, I can't believe they can sell this!"

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About the author: Dragos Chitulescu
Dragos Chitulescu profile photo

The things Dragos enjoys the most in life are, in no particular order: cars, motorcycles, diecast cars, and drifting. He's seen (and driven) many vehicles since he started his writing career back in 2009, but his garage currently houses a 1991 Mazda RX-7 FC3S Turbo II and a 1999 Suzuki SV650-S.
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