Ford GT40

The Ford GT40 is famous for winning the 24 Hours of Le Mans race for four consecutive years from 1966 to 69, ending Ferraris run of six consecutive victories.

ford gt40
Ford GT40, photo by edvvc

It was given the 40 in its name because the car stands just 40 inches high.

Four versions were made:

  • Mk I – 4.7 litre engine, made in England. This car was modified by John Wyer to win Le Mans in 1968 and 1969 after bigger engines were banned.
  • Mk II – 7.0 litre engine, made in England. It was this car that was 1-2-3 in the 1966 Le Mans race
  • Mk III – 4.7 litre engine, made in England. This car was designed for use on the road with a detuned engine (down to 335 bhp (250 Kw)
  • Mk IV – 7.0 litre engine, redesigned chassis, built in America. This car won the 1967 Le Mans race.
Ford GT40 mk III. This was the car designed for the road rather than the race track. Photo by  Hugh Llewelyn
Ford GT40 mk III. This was the car designed for the road rather than the race track. Photo by Hugh Llewelyn

It’s easy to present the car as a success story from start to finish but the early cars struggled until the car was handed over to Carrol Shelby to improve at the end of the 1964 racing season.  The car triumphed in the 2000 Daytona in February 1965 but the rest of the season was again difficult. very lesson that was learnt was put right in the Mark II version and the car triumphed in 1966.

The car was the inspiration behind the Ford GT made in the 2000s.

ford gt
Ford GT, photo details

Motoring Videos

Top Gear – The Challenge Part 1
This is mainly about the Ford GT but it’s interesting to see them together.

Part 2

The Fast Lane Car – this is a replica from Superformance in Southern California

1964 GT40 Prototype Sold For $7 million

Xcar – GT40, GT70 and GT: Five Decades of Awesome Fords

Car history – part 1

Part 2

Scale Models Of The Ford GT40

Models I’ve seen offered for sale include:

  • 1:12 Trumpeter (kit)
  • 1:18 Eagle’s Race / Universal Hobbies
  • 1:18 Exoto
  • 1:18 Shelby Collectibles (many different finishes)
  • 1:24 Fujimi (kit)
  • 1:24 Motormax
  • 1:43 Del Prado
  • 1:43 Edicola
  • 1:43 Greenlight
  • 1:43 Ixo
  • 1:43 Minichamps
  • 1:43 Solido
  • 1:43 Spark

I’ve made it easy for you to check what models are available at what price from these websites:

eBay and

Collectable Diecast – a specialist model retailer in America

Please check the search results carefully and change the criteria if necessary.

Is The GT40 One Of The Sexiest Cars Ever Made?

I love the look of cars from the 1960s and 70s so I’m biased towards this car. What it did was remarkable and it’s perhaps surprising that Ford didn’t do more to build on its success in the 70s, 80s and 90s.

What are the sexiest cars from 1960 to 1974? Vote for up to TEN of your favourites. (Blue links take you to detailed pages)

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2 thoughts on “Ford GT40”

  1. GT40 Mark I 1968-9 most beautiful car of the last 50 years Plus
    still looks good as it did in 1965 ——->

    1. The late 1960s was a golden period for car design with some stunning looking cars. My all time favourite (I think) is the Maserati Ghibli which managed to combine sports car styling with luxury.

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