Report: Ford Considering Global Market for Shelby GT500

If you’re looking for a car with a ridiculously high horsepower-per-dollar ratio, you’ve probably looked at the Ford Shelby GT500. But what if you’re looking for a high ratio of horsepower to the yuan, real, or pound sterling? You’re in luck–Ford is considering sending the Shelby GT500 to showrooms across the globe.

Automotive News reports that Ford planners are mulling the idea of selling the Shelby GT500, arguably the company’s halo model, in other markets. If the program is successful, ponycar fans as far flung as China and Brazil could receive the gift of supercharged Mustangs.

The Shelby GT500 was already available around the world, but only for people with pockets deep enough to afford importing the car themselves. The process involves a hefty amount of customs paperwork, taxes and duties, and waiting time. As a manufacturer, Ford could streamline the process by formally selling the car at showrooms.

Hau Thai-Tang, the Executive Director of Global Vehicle Programs at Ford, told AN that there’s certainly room for the GT500 in many of Ford’s international product portfolios, especially in countries like China, where the appetite for cars and increasing disposable income means more demand high-end cars.

Thai-Tang also mentioned that making that move would satisfy something else–the One Ford strategy that introduced the U.S. to the new, international versions of the Fiesta, Focus, Fusion, and Escape. Using One Ford to bring a bargain supercar to China would certainly be a different way of using that product strategy, and it doesn’t completely rule out the move.

A Ford spokesman said that while there’s long been talk of doing this, the hurdles to sending the Shelby GT500 to, say, Europe would make it very, very difficult. As for China, where regulations are relaxed? It’s anyone’s guess.

Source: Automotive News (Subscription required)