Shelby GT350 – A Low Cost M4 Alternative?

BMW M4 | May 27th, 2015 by 15
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Some of the folks over at Mustang6G.com have stumbled upon a pricing sheet for the upcoming Ford Mustang Shelby GT350. It’s not absolutely official, as …

Some of the folks over at Mustang6G.com have stumbled upon a pricing sheet for the upcoming Ford Mustang Shelby GT350. It’s not absolutely official, as of yet, but according to sources at Ford, the pricing sheet found is accurate. If that’s the case, the Shelby GT350 will have a starting price of around $49,999 after Gas Guzzler Tax. Throw in an extra $6,500 for the Track Pack and you get MagneRide Shocks, selective drive modes and oil coolers for the transmission and differential. That’s about $56,500 for a track ready Mustang with a 5.2 liter, flat-plane crank, 520hp firebreathing V8, magnetic dampers, Brembo brakes, a Torsen differential and a 6-Speed manual. Not too shabby.

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So what does that mean for BMW? Well it depends. To all of the fans reading forums and commenting on websites, it could mean that the M4 now has a big threat in the form of a stampeding Mustang. The GT350 not only out powers the M4 but is also considerably cheaper, as the M4 starts life at $64,200 before destination. Add in any bells or whistles and the M4 is easily cresting the $70,000 mark. So the GT350 will offer a serious argument to that of the M4. Many will wonder why they should pay a minimum $10,000 price increase to get the M4 when they can have a, most likely, faster GT350 for less.

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Will M4 shoppers be swayed by the calls of the Mustang? No, almost definitely not. BMW customers will seldom cross shop a Ford. The GT350 might be all of the performance that the M4 is, and maybe even more, but it won’t be the scalpel sharp driver’s car that the M4 is. It will almost certainly not be as refined, comfortable or usable in everyday life. The M4 is a unique car in that it offers such high levels of performance, just with the added luxury BMW drivers have come to expect.

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Luxury and refinement are the areas where the GT350 falls to the M4, but that’s okay, because the GT350 isn’t meant to be a refined, luxurious vehicle. The GT350 is meant to rip your face off at the track, and it should do that very well. But that’s also something that the M4 was designed to do. The M4 is no slouch on the race track, in fact, it’s one of the better road cars on the market for track use. But will the GT350’s track-bred focus be able to best the M4’s duality when the roads get twisty?

It’s possible and, if so, could make the M4 look very vulnerable to some. In my honest opinion, the M4 will be the better car, and I say that without the GT350 even being released yet. But I say it because the GT350 will be what it has always been, a very capable, high-performance track car for the road. While the M4 is a very fast, capable, high-performance road car that can be used on the track. However, try explaining that to the folks who only hear horsepower numbers and 0-60 times. The GT350 will probably best all of the M4’s numbers, and at a significantly lower cost, but it probably won’t have the same level of finesse.

But the M4 has been compared to such cars as the Camaro Z/28 before, so it’s possible that people will make this comparison as well. Seeing as the cars will have similar performance numbers, the idea isn’t farfetched. What do you think, will the upcoming Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 be a low-cost alternative to the BMW M4? It might be faster and better on a track, but will it be the better car?

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