Long story short: After a spat with Enzo Ferrari, a sorely miffed Henry Ford directed master-blaster Carroll Shelby to build a LeMans-beater, giving birth to the GT40 MkII with a carnivorous 427ci V8 big block stolen from grandma’s Galaxie.
Back in the sixties, those GT40s decisively whipped Ferrari and an odd assortment of European weenies with a Win, Place, and Show at Le Mans. Then went on to dominate the series for years to come (until race organizers outlawed the 427). When losers lose they change the rules. And they whine.
Though short-lived, the millennial road-going GT was still a fire-breathing supercharged V8 of three hundred something cubes. Which makes it odd that Dearborn decided to resuscitate the sacred nameplate, but this time with a V6 …a 3.5 liter EcoBoost V6 (because nothing screams performance like a Big Gulp™ of Eco).
That same not-an-eight underpowers their retro pony. And just as it did in the early seventies, the gelding has wandered off the trail into Mustang II territory with a “performance package” that replaces the Eco six with a funky four. But half the cylinders is still only half a car; and with or without boosted-Eco, all four bangers possess the songful elegance of a blender on two-twenty.
Unfortunately, Ford’s V6 fetish doesn’t end there. Guess what’s not under the tin-foiled hood of the F150? Two cylinders. The over-hyped wrench and horsepower numbers are meant to reassure the blue-oval faithful, but all the comparisons only confirm what it ain’t. It ain’t an eight.
All any truck needs is an eight, four-by-four gait, and work that won’t wait. Otherwise, it’s just a big ugly car.
Yes, the factory will let owners order something bigger… a little eight. But the real trucks begin at F250 (emphasis on the two) or sport bow-ties and ram horns.
All engines are innately eights. Sixes, fours (and effeminate fives) are factory neutered to appease some princely decree. But fuel efficiency is not a dealer option – an abused six is still less economical than any responsibly driven eight.
Ultimately, both performance and economy are expressions of freedom: Man’s inalienable right to be governed solely by the sole of his right foot.
Corvette Summer 454
There are two kinds of men in this world: Those who own a big block, and those whose wives won’t let them.
The Love Bug
Dial that analog tuner to a classic Amplitude Modulated station and feel the groove of Three Dog Night cryin’ ♪ “Joy to the World…” ♬