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1967 Ford Mark IV - Ford's Reponse To Enzo

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On: Tue, Oct 11, 2011 at 9:17AM | By: Peter C Sessler

1967 Ford Mark IV - Ford's Reponse To Enzo

In the 1960s, Ford Motor Co. was into racing big time - the reason being that whatever you raced on Sunday, customers would come and buy the car on Monday. It was a simple process - win on Sunday, sell on Monday.

The same formula applied to sports car racing, but it would be better (i.e. cheaper) if Ford just bought another sports car manufacturer, changed the name to Ford and watch the sales take off. The only problem here was Enzo Ferrari, owner of the most successful sports car manufacturer company who also had the most winning-est race cars around, did not want to sell out to Henry Ford II.

Henry Ford II was not your easy-go-lucky car manufacturer. When he wanted something, he would go out and get it. And so from 1964 to the end of 1967, epic duels between Ford and Ferrari took place which pushed the development of sports cars to a new level and which also provided thrilling competition for spectators to see.

The Ford effort was truly massive, yet it still took Ford 2 years to catch Ferrari. Ford won the series championship at Le Mans in1966, and was ready to chase Ferrari in 1967. Ford lost at the 24 Hours of Daytona in 1967, but won with the new 1967 Ford GT Mark IV at the Sebring 12 Hours, and again at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. After winning these two races, Ford pulled the plug on sports car endurance racing. It seems that Henry Ford II had proved his point.

The most famous one is the Le Mans-winning red Number One car, now at the Henry Ford Museum. After the race was over, the car was shipped to the Henry Ford museum, and it is there today. It has done its job and that was that. The drivers were Dan Gurney and A.J. Foyt. The yellow car, the Sebring winner, was driven by Mario Andretti and Bruce McLaren. This car was sold to a private owner.

The car was powered by a 427 cubic inch Ford engine and mated to a four-speed transmission. It made approximately 535hp with a top speed of over 220 mph.

Nice, nice car!

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