Ford Authority

2020 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500: First Real World Photos


We’ve already told you all about the new 2020 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500. And though we’ve already seen the new Shelby GT500 from just about every angle at the 2019 North American Auto Show in Detroit, we have yet to see Ford’s most powerful production car on the streets without any camouflage… until now.

We managed to spy a Shadow Black Mustang Shelby GT500 belonging to FoMoCo as it was doing final validation testing near the automaker’s vehicle development offices, giving us an opportunity to get our first look at the new beast in the wild.

At the front, the angular grille openings and muscular hood combine so well for a menacing and highly-aerodynamic design inspired by modern fighter jet aircraft. There’s also the wider front fenders and stance housing a set of black 20×11 wheels specific to the Shelby GT500. The front wheels proportionally align to the pony’s rear fenders housing up to 20×11.5-inch wheels. The rims fill the wheel wells out very nicely and make for an amazing aesthetic.

Should anyone have any questions about what version of the Mustang they’re looking at, the GT500 script in a turquoise-green hue on the front bumper should settle any doubts.

Notice the new, standard rear spoiler and menacing quad exhaust. The Mustang Shelby GT500 also features an updated composite materials in the rear diffuser, resulting in added thermal management.

The 2020 Mustang Shelby GT500 is powered by a supercharged 5.2-liter V8 engine making over 700 horsepower. All that power is sent to the ground via the rear wheels via a choice of two sets of tires:

  • Custom Ford Performance-spec Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tires, or
  • More aggressive Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires featuring unique compounds and tread

The prototype seen here is riding on the Pilot Sport Cup 2 rubber. Also take note of the massive 16.5-inch (420 millimeter) two-piece rotors – the largest of any domestic sports coupe, as well as the Brembo six-piston calipers, which are larger and stiffer on the 2020 Shelby GT500.

In fact, these brakes have 20 percent more swept area than those of the Shelby GT350, enabling the brakes to have more than 30 percent additional thermal mass in the front corners.

Peruse through the gallery at your leisure to get an eyeful of this wonderful new beast, which also happens to be the most powerful street-legal Ford vehicle ever.


Ford Authority founder with a passion for global automotive business strategy.

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  1. Christopher Hackbarth

    I put down a deposit, got the allotment, now it is just the waiting game till I get the call from dealer to pick my color & options. This Shelby is just too bad ass to not own one, even with an automatic.

    1. Jason p

      I think I would really like having it in a automatic with paddle shifters. I’m saying that with knowing how to drive 2013 Shelby with a 3.6 LC KB & 6sp manual that has 860whp & 840tq spec p trim dual clutch. Oh and That is my dally driver, I’m not saying it’s not fun to have a manual some of the time, but there are a lot of the time I wish I had it in a automatic. Plus if it’s more efficient in getting you in to the next gear and with this new automatic that can switch gears in .1sec. I just don’t see any downside other than it’s just fun and to have that feel of having a little more control with a manual transmission. But on the streets where I live is brutal on the leg lol with the traffic.

  2. Joe Fleck

    Is it my imagination or not…..but this version appears to be somewhat shorter than previous [email protected]!

  3. Robert Owen

    I’m really curious about the towing numbers,, on the GT500.

    1. Robert Owen

      Anyone else notice the hitch attached to the back of the black test car?

      1. vbondjr1

        i feel like that might be a microphone recorder, just saying. they’re probably recording the sound of the exhaust, possibly for something that may go on the Ford Website when they release the car officially.

  4. vbondjr1

    This car really excites me about the 7th Gen S650 CD6 platform mustang. usually the next generation mustang builds on the previous generation’s strong points. With this next car, I expect to see the fourth Generation of the Coyote V8. A GT500 block, Possibly the GT500 crank shaft adding a different length in the stroke for hopefully more torque, upgraded cylinder heads similar to the Ford performance GT350 style heads and camshafts, the GT350 intake manifold, throttle body and cold air intake, direct and port injection and prayerfully the GT500 exhaust manifolds separate from the cats. I’m sure the Performance pack mustang will use the current GT500 brake setup, a form of Magnetic ride, a 20×11″ front 20×11.5″ rear wheel setup as the S650 will be wide enough to handle that, under body aero pannels, a less retro exterior design but it will still have more than enough of the mustang’s styling cues to let anyone know it’s a mustang. With the more aero style displayed in the Ford Ad “the Future is Built” I almost suspect a heat extractor style hood (similar to the Camaro SS) on this car along with the new headlamp design, which will have a different light signature front and rear along with a more GT500 styled rear diffuser and possibly a GT350 like rear spoiler option along with a few others. Along with the exterior, I expect the interior to receive some updates as well. Although the ownership or partial ownership is no longer there, Ford has some relatively close ties in Europe (Jaguar, Range Rover, their blatant love affair with aston martin’s styling (and vice versa) and now a new partner with VW which would include Audi) With that being said, I would suspect some updated tech, materials and a few other things that partnerships bring. Jaguar has an AWD 5.0L coupe, the F-type. In mentioning this, we can already see that a 5.0L DOHC V8 will fit in a small front engine rear wheel drive coupe body. BMW has just done a similar thing with the M850i X-drive. Back to the interior, I’d expect the latest in Sync technology along with an upgraded B&0 speaker system, Navigation, heads up display, a full LED instrument cluster, a wider center stack housing a 12″ infotainment screen, a modern version of the classic mustang dual scoop dash moving smoothly to a sweeping center console, a bit more rear leg room and front passenger room as well as a slightly larger trunk even with the dual subwoofers of the B&O system. Believe it or not, i also expect a different exhaust system on this car, one that mimics more of the Jaguar F-type or even the Camaro with the suitcase rear muffler (don’t worry it wouldn’t be new to the mustang, just not something seen on a mustang since roughly 1970 but the design works!) The exhaust will still have different modes but the whole tone of the exhaust will be deeper. As far as this hybrid drive design goes, The two front drive systems will be designed for performance but not in the sense of adding power. My thoughts on this is the new hybrid-drive 10-speed auto found in the Aviator will make its way to the Mustang, just not as powerful. I believe by itself, the Gen 4 coyote V8 will produce 495hp and roughly 445lb-ft of torque. However with the Hybrid drive system attached, I believe the Hybrid mustang GT’s power will tip in with a 20hp gain to 515hp but the torque numbers will jump up to around 530lb-ft, a gain of 85lb-ft. all fed through a carbon fiber driveshaft inside a safety tube leading to a redesigned hybrid-electric differential manufactured by the same company that designed the one for the Focus RS. Obviously the CD6 mustang will have a slightly revised suspension but as we know alot of the Mustang’s current suspension works with the CD6 chassis as shown on the Aviator/Explorer. The front electric drive system isn’t meant to improve power but improve handling and traction. I have a feeling that it will be used as more of an aid than anything for inclement weather as it will be on all the time in Snow/ice mode, and as far as sport modes and everything else, it will assist in neutralizing the handling at higher speeds. Of course, Roush is going to get their hands on this thing and improve styling, handling, exhaust, and slap a supercharger on it for more power on a stage-2 kit. I’m sure a more track oriented GT350/Boss-302 will show up as well as a new Cobra as ford will hopefully retire the Shelby GT350 & GT500 and go back to the in-house names. I’m hoping at least that there will be a “Mach-1” package on the GT/GT hybrid. All in all, this is the direction i see the new mustang going in.

  5. Jimmy M

    How do you get an allotment?


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