Ford set to debut Mustang GT3 race car for 2024 racing season
Ford Motor Co. in Dearborn has announced that the Mustang will lead the automaker’s return to global sports car racing as Ford Performance prepares a new GT3 race car for competition in 2024.
Ford Performance has unveiled plans for its all-new Mustang GT3 race car that will compete in the 2024 International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) racing season, including the 24 Hours of Daytona.
Mustang’s new effort will be a joint program between Ford Performance and longtime collaborator Multimatic Motorsports. It will include both a two-car IMSA GTD Pro factory team run by Multimatic, as well as customer Mustang race cars for the GTD class starting at Daytona in 2024.
“Mustang was born to race from the start, and we’re excited to introduce the GT3 version to take on some of the world’s biggest manufacturers,” said Mark Rushbrook, global director of Ford Performance Motorsports. “With 58 years of global endurance racing experience, including NASCAR and Australian supercars today, we are ready to take Mustang to the next level of global performance.
“Multimatic Motorsports is the ideal partner for us on this project,” he adds. “Not only have they worked with us to develop many Mustang customer programs in the past, but their work on the Ford GT program and the new Bronco DR customer race programs together has shown that we can deliver championship level race programs. for Ford and its customers.
The new Mustang GT3 race car will be powered by a Ford Performance Coyote-based 5.0-litre V8 engine developed by Ford Performance and built by long-time collaborator and world championship winning team, M-Sport of Cumbria, in England.
“We are excited to be working on this new IMSA program as well as the GT3 customer program with Ford Performance,” said Larry Holt, executive vice president of Multimatic Special Vehicle Operations. “We have a long and excellent working relationship with each other, both at the highest level of professional sports car racing and in the development of competitive racing programs and vehicles for customers.”
Both organizations have a rich history in the FIA World Rally Championship and recently collaborated in the development and preparation of the Ford Puma Hybrid Rally1, which finished 1-3-5 in its debut race at the recent Rally de Monte Carlo.
“We are delighted to broaden our relationship with Ford and extend it to the world of racing after 25 years of success together in the World Rally Championship, which once again delivers stunning results with the Puma Hybrid Rally1” , said Malcom Wilson, owner. from M-Sport. “M-Sport has a wealth and depth of circuit racing knowledge and expertise, particularly from our GT3 program which used a V8 engine developed by M-Sport for GT3 which propelled us to victory in the 2020 Bathurst 12 Hour Race and the 2019 Paul Ricard 1000 km.
“Our most recent engine project saw us become the official engine supplier to the British Touring Car Championship, which also uses Ford engine architecture,” adds Wilson. “We are very excited to work directly with Ford Performance and Multimatic on the Mustang GT3 and we will work very hard, sparing no effort as we join forces to fight for more wins around the world.”
The race-specific powertrain will carry on the legacy of high-performance naturally aspirated V-8s of the Mustang platform. The engine will carry the heart and soul of the world famous Ford Coyote and will have performance and packaging modifications to make it championship ready for world class GT3 endurance racing.
The new Mustang GT3 race car will feature custom short-long arm suspension front and rear, rear-mounted transaxle gearbox, carbon fiber body panels, as well as a unique aerodynamic package developed to meet the objectives of the GT3.
Ford and Multimatic will make factory and customer-ready Mustang GT3s available to teams from the start of the 2024 season.
Joey Hand, one of the 2016 Le Mans 24 Hours GTE Pro class-winning drivers in the Ford GT, will be one of the new program’s test drivers, while continuing his role as a development driver and coach for Ford Performance. As part of that, he will also drive six NASCAR Cup road races in 2022 in a Rick Ware Racing Ford Mustang.
“It’s great to be on the ground floor of another amazing sports car racing program with Ford,” says Hand. “As much as I love competing and winning on the track, I love being involved in the development of new race vehicles like this Mustang. We have done a lot of testing with the Ford GT program, so it will be great to work with many from the same people at Ford and Multimatic as we prepare this car for competition.
Although the Mustang GT3 for IMSA is new, Ford and Multimatic have confirmed that the success of the Mustang GT4 customer racing program will continue into the future, with a new Mustang GT4 set to debut in the 2023 season.
“It’s important for us to continue to support the Mustang GT4 effort as well,” Rushbrook says. “We have had great success here and in Europe with the current Mustang GT4, and we look forward to being able to supply our customers with an all-new car for competition in the GT4 class from next season. We will have more to say about this in the near future.
The new Mustang announcements for sports car racing add to a series of new racing Mustangs coming soon for Ford Performance. The 2022 Ford Mustang Next Gen will make its NASCAR Cup Series debut on Feb. 6 at the LA Coliseum, then the Daytona 500 two weeks later. And Ford Performance is developing its new Gen 3 Mustang for the Supercars series which will debut in early 2023.
Multimatic, based in Toronto, is a privately held global company that provides components, systems and engineering services to the automotive industry. Multimatic’s core competencies include the engineering and manufacturing of complex mechanisms, body hardware, suspension systems and body structures, as well as the design and development of lightweight composite automotive systems. In addition, Multimatic offers the design, development and production of niche vehicles for road and racing applications.
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