1966 Ford GT40 MKI P/1061
As the release of “Ford V Ferrari” approaches this weekend, we are very excited and cant wait to see the movie and talk to you all about it. Before that happened we wanted to share a very special car that we have stored here at Crown Concepts as well as some of the Superformance GT40 cars that we have built over the years.
This 1966 Ford GT40 MKI comes to us as part of the Jim Click collection of historic race cars. It features a 390 bhp, 289 cu. in. OHV V-8 engine with four 48 IDA Weber carburetors and a five-speed ZF 5DS-25 manual transmission. This GT40, chassis no. P/1061, is one of only 31 Mark I road cars built, and was completed in late 1966. Rather than being sold and delivered to a private owner, it was immediately sent to Ford’s own facilities in Dearborn, Michigan, it was one of just seven Mk I GT40s consigned to the Car Merchandising Department for promotional use.
Backing out of an acquisition with Ford was perhaps the nail-in-the-coffin of Ferrari’s success at Le Mans, and the Ford GT40 hammered that coffin shut. Henry Ford II decided that he if couldn’t buy Ferrari, he’d beat them at their own game, and that’s just what the GT40 did. Ferrari’s last win at Le Mans was in 1965 with their 250 LM and at that time, Ford was just beginning to gain steam with their GT program. By 1966, Ferrari’s Le Mans dynasty was at an end, and Ford would not only win, sweeping 1-2-3 in 1966, but GT40s would put America at the top of the podium at the Circuit de la Sarthe every year until 1969. Only 31 Mark I examples were specifically built for use on the road. These examples featured similar mechanical specifications to their race-winning counterparts, but were outfitted with a few more luxuries for comfortable use, including fully-upholstered interiors. Mechanically, they utilized softer suspension settings, more compliant brakes, as well as a quieter exhaust. Regardless, these GT40s were still very much racing cars though intended for the open road. As a result, many of them wound up in the hands of privateers, looking to either take them racing, or get the closest possible experience to driving on a racetrack, albeit on public roads.
As an authorized Superformance dealer and installer, Crown Concepts has built several GT40’s and Shelby Cobras over the years. The GT40 is a legendary and amazing race car and we get excited every time we get to build one for a customer. Its a reminder of our racing heritage and how important the history of racing is to everything that we do.