Like Le Mans and the Ford GT, the Gulf Oil racing livery has a rich and storied heritage. This week in Monterey, Ford is celebrating all three with three generations of GT, including the newest, which gets a special Gulf-liveried Heritage Edition for the 2019 model year. The Heritage Edition also celebrates the 50th Anniversary of Ford’s 1969 win at Le Mans—the last of the four back-to-back wins for the GT40.
It’s an interesting move, coming a half dozen or so years after what many in the automotive industry might consider “Peak Gulf,” a time when many carmakers, as well as the aftermarket, were using the famous blue-and-orange livery for heritage models and special editions. But unlike so many of the others seeking to cash in on a familiar racing theme, Ford’s claim to the livery is genuine, and, in the case of the GT, runs to its very roots.
In fact, the 2019 Ford GT Heritage Edition will see an unusual two-year run despite its limited-edition status, in honor of the 1968 Ford GT40 bearing chassis no. 1075, which won both the 1968 and 1969 Le Mans races. If you add the exposed carbon number roundel option, for the 2019 model year, the cars will receive a No. 9 graphic on the doors and hood, while 2020 models will get the No. 6 graphic—another nod to the numbers worn by chassis 1075. A ghosted version of the numbers also appears on the interior door panels of equipped cars.
In addition to the iconic Gulf Oil livery, the 2019 Heritage Edition Ford GT gets a range of other upgraded equipment, including: exposed carbon-fiber A-pillars; unique 20-inch one-piece forged aluminum wheels in gloss dark stainless; orange brake calipers; black Alcantara on the seat trim, instrument panel surround, headliner, and steering wheel; dark stainless trim accents; and a serialized identification plate.
Details on pricing and availability haven’t been released.