Ford Shelby GT500 Super Snake COURSE CODE:ENG 204SUBMITTED TO :GULSEN HUSSEINSUBMITTED BY:AKİF YURDAKAN NUMBER:20100986 MARC 2012
On its third pull, the blue black 2010 Shelby GT500 Super Snake just lit up the K & Ns dyno to the tune of 635 horsepower and 581 lb- ft of torque. Quick mental math says somewhere between 730 and 760 horsepower at the crankshaft.
I Quickly text for an explanation, Scott Black of Shelbys PR company. He responds: "We are in the midst of changing our marketing materials to reflect the 750 launch .. which we announced last month at the car." Hmmm. Must have missed that. I do not miss the unintentional irony of Blacks sign off: "We tend to be a bit conservative." Seven hundred and fifty horsepower is conservative? Yeah, like an 8 x 8 InnOut Double-Double "Animal Style" or Giselle Bundchen in green body paint spattered. Head still spinning from the Obscenity of 635 wheel horsepower (three shy of what makes a Corvette ZR-1 at the crank), we head to Fontana to test the Super Snakes traction and road test editor Scott Mortaras launchs skills.
Mortara has already been prepped for this adventure. Vince LaViolette, Inc. Shelby Automobiles senior designer, test driver, and, apparently, already gave us a tutorial vehicle transporter 2010 Shelby Super Snake # 001C when he dropped off. "Immediately drop the clutch and then shift to second," says LaViolette, his left foot and right hand backwards while jerking spasmodically. "Otherwise, youre just going to sit and spin."
We take him at his word, but its no good. Despite the brief engagement, the Super Snake simply PZeros roasts its in first gear and then all the way through most of second and third gear. It does not matter what technique employs Mortara - hard, crunching gear launches, into a soft roll first, even second-gear starts - he can not simply set the ponies into the Super Snakes forward motion. Its like the Raiders on third and short. Despite all the firepower, it can not simply convert. Only does the pavement at the top of third gear finally catch up to the melting Pirellis furiously. From then on the Super Snake is like a Rocket Through the quarter mile.
Just compare the acceleration of the Super Snake with its little brother - the GT500. At 1.7 seconds to 30 mph, theyre dead even - though the Super Snake seems more interested in making little sooty piles of rubber from the moment it leaves the start. A heartbeat later, the GT500 is pulling ahead - hitting 40 mph three tenths of a second faster (2.3 vs. 2.6 sec). By 50 mph, the Snakes grip is returning but its still behind a tenth (3.3 vs. 3.2 sec). Theyre tied up at 60 mph (4.1 sec) and 70 mph (5 sec flat). By 80 mph big bro is locked-and-loaded and bombing down the runway at full slither. At 90 mph, the GT500 is now seven tenths of a second behind (7.7 vs. 7.0 sec) and at the century, the Super Snake has it by a full second. At the 1320 foot marker, the Super Snake clicks off flat at 120.1 mph 12.0 seconds, four tenths of a second later comes the GT500 and 4.1 mph slower.
So say the handling numbers. With a lateral acceleration of 0.92 g and a time of 25.7 sec at 0.72 g of figure 8, the Super Snake is a solid performer. Problem is it slots in behind the GT500 in both categories (0.96 g, 25.1 sec at 0.81 g). In fact, a regular-equipped Mustang GT track pack (0.95 g, 25.5 sec at 0.70 g) gets around quicker our cones. So whats the problem? Weight is one factor, as the Super Snake is 372 lbs heavier than the GT, but that can not be the only reason. The GT500 weighs only 31 lbs less than the near Snake production model we tested. Once it has its much lighter hood (which feels like it adds 60 lbs to the nose), the two should be nearly even.