World Champion Drifter and Professional Funhaver, Vaughn Gittin Jr. and Dave Pericak, global director of Ford Performance, unveiled the competition-spec 2016 Monster Energy Nitto Tire Ford Mustang RTR drift car today at Ford Motor Company’s annual press conference at the SEMA Show in Las Vegas, NV.
In January 2015, Vaughn debuted his prototype competition car, which his team used all year as a platform to meticulously develop the new competition-spec drift car for the 2016 Formula Drift season.
The competition car, built on the globally-available 2016 Ford Mustang platform and prepared at the RTR special projects lab in Charlotte, North Carolina, will utilize the confidence-inspiring independent suspension design featured in the all-new Ford Mustang, coupled with the sticky Nitto NT05 to ensure Vaughn will have the traction that he needs to drive in excess of 100mph sideways on any track put in front of him.
“It’s incredible to see how much drifting has progressed on all fronts in the last 10 years, It’s just crazy, the things we are doing on the track these days and I am pumped to have such an awesome car that will enable us to continue pushing the envelope,” mentions Vaughn. Consistent with Ford’s internal initiatives, the RTR team utilized modern light-weighting technology by using composites and other light metal alloys to drop the car to a near 2,800lbs wet with a 50/50 weight distribution.
Under the hood is a 436 cubic-inch Ford Performance/Roush Yates-built engine that revs to 9000 RPM and makes over 900 horsepower via individual throttle body injection breathing through K&N Performance Air Filters. Vaughn shares his excitement on the car, “It’s crazy to think that I’m driving the equivalent of a 9-second drag racing car…. sideways. Needless to say, I’m pumped to get out there and have some fun!”
All the fun starts on Wednesday at SEMA when the Monster Energy Nitto Tire Ford Mustang RTR will be at the Ford Out Front experience giving rides and putting on a show for fans and convention attendees all week long. This is the first time a competition car has been unveiled inside and then brought out to flex its muscles.
The car will make its competition debut in April at the first round of the Formula Drift Championship in Long Beach, CA. Although the competition car won’t be available to the public, the new Mustang RTR will be available at select Ford dealers in the USA and Europe in the spring of 2016.