Monday, May 16, 2016

They’re the Wheel Deal: Ford GT to Offer Carbon Fiber Wheels

Ford GT carbon fiber wheel, 1

Like a street peddler trying to push cubic zirconia as actual diamond, many automotive parts manufacturers try to pass off faux-carbon fiber as the real deal. We see it all the time, especially in the aftermarket: faux-carbon-fiber vents, faux-carbon fiber dashboard kits, and faux-carbon fiber vinyl wraps. Fortunately, there’s nothing fake about the available carbon fiber wheels on the all-new Ford GT. They’re the real deal.

Ford GT carbon fiber wheel, 3

Following the Ford Mustang Shelby GT350R, the GT is the second Ford vehicle to offer carbon fiber wheels from the factory. Lighter and stronger than their forged-aluminum counterparts, the carbon fiber wheels on the GT also save more than 2 pounds of unsprung weight per corner, according to Ford, resulting in a 25-percent reduction in rolling inertia. The material’s inherent strength also makes the wheels less susceptible to bending or breaking.

Sized 8.5-by-20 inches up front and 11.5-by-20 inches in the rear—the same as the standard forged-aluminum wheels—the GT’s carbon fiber wheels will be available in either a matte or gloss clear-coat finish. Both finishes match the GT’s exposed carbon fiber finishes that are integrated into the front and rear fascias, and the side sills. Like the price of the GT, the cost of opting for the carbon fiber wheels is still a state secret. To get some idea, though, we see that Ford lists the cost of replacement carbon fiber wheels on a GT350R at $4053.33 per front wheel and $3043.33 per rear wheel, or more than $14,000 for an entire set.

Only 500 GTs will be offered to the public over the next two years—250 available at the end of this year, and 250 next year—and all 500 buyers selected to purchase a new GT will have the opportunity to order their 600-plus-horsepower, twin-turbocharged V-6 supercar with carbon fiber wheels.

from Car and Driver Blog

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