Ford Mustang GT4 Tears Up the Track Down Under

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Track-only Mustang gets a bigger Ford Performance V8, racing gearbox and trick suspension to help it battle its rivals in GT4 racing.

We’ve got it made here in the U.S. We can get the Ford Mustang in EcoBoost, GT, Shelby GT350, and, eventually, GT500 form. Our friends down in Australia aren’t so lucky. They can’t buy the Shelby GT350. There is a silver lining, though. As this carsales.com.au video shows, dedicated Aussie racers can now buy the track-focused Mustang GT4.

As its name implies, it’s designed for the GT4 racing class and can be driven in competitions including the IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge, Pirelli World Challenge GTS/GT4, and GT4 European Series. Multimatic builds it for Ford Performance and uses some of its own hardware as well as parts from Ford’s go-fast division. As Michael Barber, Multimatic Australia’s Vehicle Dynamics Engineering Manager explains, “The car is, essentially, 80 percent race car and 20 percent road car.”

themustangsource.com Ford Mustang GT4

The GT4 uses a Ford Performance 5.2-liter V8 which produces nearly 600 horsepower in max tune. A pneumatic Holinger six-speed transmission converts that output into rapid forward motion. Underneath, there’s a combination of Ford Performance suspension components and Multimatic’s trick Spool Valve dampers. The race-spec Brembos are connected to driver-adjustable ABS and race-ready traction control systems.

themustangsource.com Ford Mustang GT4

Bathurst racing champion Luke Youlden jumps behind the wheel to see how Australia’s most hardcore Mustang performs on a track. According to him, the GT4’s a winner, too. He thinks it’s “very well balanced. Doesn’t try to kill you at all. … You can push the limit of the ABS, the traction control.”

themustangsource.com Ford Mustang GT4

Host and carsales.com.au‘s editor in chief Mike Sinclair jumps in the driver’s seat next. Despite the GT4’s aggressive and intimidating looks, Sinclair finds it approachable and user-friendly. “Steering weight’s light. It’s predictable. It’s quite benign, the way it’s set up now.”

themustangsource.com Ford Mustang GT4

Unfortunately, it takes more than racing talent and love of the Ford Mustang to get the GT4. It also takes a lot of money—$228,529, to be exact.

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Derek Shiekhi's father raised him on cars. As a boy, Derek accompanied his dad as he bought classics such as post-WWII GM trucks and early Ford Mustang convertibles.

After loving cars for years and getting a bachelor's degree in Business Management from Texas State University, Derek decided to get an associate degree in journalism from Austin Community College as well. His networking put him in contact with the editor of the Austin-American Statesman newspaper, who hired him to write freelance about automotive culture and events in Austin, Texas in 2013. One particular story led to him getting a certificate for learning the foundations of road racing.

While watching TV with his parents one fateful evening, he saw a commercial that changed his life. In it, Jeep touted the Wrangler as the Texas Auto Writers Association's "SUV of Texas." Derek knew he had to join the organization if he was going to advance as an automotive writer. He joined the Texas Auto Writers Association (TAWA) in 2014 and was fortunate to meet several nice people who connected him to the representatives of several automakers and the people who could give him access to press vehicles (the first one he ever got the keys to was a Lexus LX 570). He's now a regular at TAWA's two main events: the Texas Auto Roundup in the spring and the Texas Truck Rodeo in the fall.

Over the past several years, Derek has learned how to drive off-road in various four-wheel-drive SUVs (he even camped out for two nights in a Land Rover), and driven around various tracks in hot hatches, muscle cars, and exotics. Several of his pieces, including his article about the 2015 Ford F-150 being crowned TAWA's 2014 "Truck of Texas" and his review of the Alfa Romeo 4C Spider, have won awards in TAWA's annual Excellence in Craft Competition. Last year, his profile of Wagonmaster, a business that restores Jeep Wagoneers, won prizes in TAWA’s signature writing contest and its pickup- and SUV-focused Texas Truck Invitational.

In addition to writing for a variety of Internet Brands sites, including JK-Forum.com and Ford-Trucks.com, Derek also contributes to other outlets. He started There Will Be Cars on Instagram and Facebook to get even more automotive content out to fellow enthusiasts.

Derek can be contacted at [email protected]

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