2013 Ford Shelby GT500 According to Jamal Hameedi, the SVT chief nameplate engineer, the 200 mph top speed of the 2013 Shelby GT500 is no coincidence. At the L.A. Auto Show last month he informed us that the SVT team specifically set out to break the 200 mph mark during their high speed testing at the Nardo Ring in Italy. “We told the guys to not bother coming back unless they had a two as the first digit,” he told us. To achieve their goal, SVT engineers revised the gearing of the 2013 GT500 to specifically hit redline at 200 mph and designed various aspects of the bodywork to keep the car stable at high speed including what Hameedi calls the “splitter-splitter” (two front splitters stacked on top of each other), a subtle lip on the bottom portion of the upper grille and a revised belly pan. The hard work paid off, with the 2013 GT500 eventually coming away from testing with a top speed of 202 mph. Ironically, Hameedi says that the changes to increase the top speed have improved the 2013 GT500′s acceleration capabilities for both 0-60 mph and 1/4 mile times. “It’s actually a fallout of redlining 5th gear at 200 mph,” he told us. “If you do equal spacing with the gears after that, then 1st gear is 60 mph and you can do the 1/4 mile in 3rd gear.” While Ford hasn’t release acceleration times (and likely won’t), we’re sure that the performance figures will start coming in once the magazines get their hands on the 2013 Shelby GT500 in the next few months. Stay tuned…

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