Great video and I'm not surprised by your conclusion. Put the same PSC2 tires on your car and you'll have a stronger opinion about the 350. While the GT3's sound amazing between 7-9000 rpm they sound pedestrian below that. The 350 is what I hoped the Boss was. Ford killed it with this car. ;D
The highlight of the GT3 and GT3RS was the PDK transmission with lightning fast shifts and the launch control. It was wild holding the brake, with the throttle to the floor, revs holding at 5k, and then side stepping the brake and laying down some rubber. I must have done that 10 times and it left a smile on my face every time. The way those cars launch was amazing and very consistent. The transmission however wasn't perfect, some of the shifts weren't consistent and the car would make you wait for the revs to be below some predetermined amount before it will allow you to manually downshift the car. There were times when I was clicking the left paddle and it refused to downshift and I was definitely at the right speed to take a lower gear. I take back my comment about the body control being better on the GT3 than in the standard 350. The body control on the two cars felt very similar but the race course at the Porsche Center was super smooth. I had the GT350 at Road Atlanta and that track is really rough with lots of patches, rough sections, and elevation changes. On rough tracks I recommend running the GT350 dampers in sport or normal to handle the bumps. It did fine in track mode but it's more violent and maybe too stiff over the bumps. I would go as far as to say the GT350 is stiffer than my Boss was on Eibach Sportlines and Koni Yellows but the ride is still better in the 350; the MR dampers are fantastic.
I know there are some comments on the GT350 having some understeer...trust me, it's not bad at all. Go and drive a GT4, GT3, or GT3RS and it's worse in those cars. I really wasn't impressed with the GT4. For a car that's over $100k it should perform better. It's underpowered and will turn slower lap times than a standard GT350. I was on track with two at Road Atlanta and one of them had R7's on it and I was still turning faster lap times on the stock PSSs. The GT350 is about equal in acceleration with the GT3 and slightly slower than the GT3RS. I had the chance to drag race a GT3RS down the 150mph back straight at Road Atlanta and the GT3RS would just barely be able to pull past me and I wonder if I had a higher MPH before going to the brakes because he has more aero. I managed to hit 151mph at Road Atlanta down the back straight. In the Boss I think I was hitting about 145mph on slicks and light weight wheels.
The magic of the Porsches is their light weight...imagine a 3300lb GT350. That car would be the SH!$$. Maybe one day I'll get the car down to 3600lbs with some light weight wheels and an aluminum driveshaft. I have the original title from Ford, I think it's called the MSO, and it said the car weighed 3707lbs, so with a full tank of fuel it's 3800lbs.
Your acceleration comparison is the same as mine. Outside of the launch and better gearing on corner exit the GT350 and GT3 are dead even. The RS is just a step ahead and it has lower diff gearing. All cars are getting heavier and the Porsches are no exception.
While the GT350 is a great track car and seat of the pants comparisons are interesting although massively flawed for accuracy for a multitued of reasonas the fact is when you look at controlled instrumented track time comparisons with drivers of comparable high skill the GT4 is on par with the GT350 in track performance and marginally behind the R, likely due to the R's massive rubber. The GT3 is faster than the R looking at controlled track performances and the R wouldn't see where an RS had gone.
I don't know where the impression of understeer is coming from in the above assessment since understeer is certainly not one of the 991 GT3 traits and certainly not one of the RS's traits especially with their RWS. Maybe tire pressure issues, maybe over cooked rubber, maybe entry speeds too hot?
I bleed Ford blue but fair is fair and it seems we're getting a "tad" carried away here.
I spoke to the owner of a new GT4 while I was at Road Atlanta. The MSRP on the car was just over $110k and he paid $20k over that. What was even more interesting is he was the second owner. It was practically brand new when he got it but he still paid over $130k for the car and after tax it was a $140,000 dollar car. That is more than double the MSRP of even the GT350R.
Now, lets make a few comparisons... We got 90-120 minutes in each of these cars: GT4, GT3, and GT3RS. The GT4 I drove had 300 miles on the clock and the GT3 was one of their highest mileage cars there with 3000 miles. These cars are so meticulously maintained and they are always on fresh rubber. You don't pay $3000 dollars to drive three cars for 90 minutes each and not get good service, at least I hope not.
First the GT4...What an amazing car. Only 385hp so the engine doesn't over power the chassis and the power with the gearing is very manageable and friendly. One thing I did not like was the shifter. The center consoles rises from the rear to the front on a slight angle. The shifter did not stick out far enough and was in an awkward position for my liking. It was hard to get 3-2 downshifts because the location of the shifter. Also, the brake and gas pedal were so far apart it took me a few laps to get the heel toe downshifts figured out. It wasn't a bad car but for $140k it was very underwhelming. It didn't make me ever want to spend that kind of money on a car that would never keep up with my GT350 on the same rubber. It was a fun car but I could never afford one and it's not on my list of must have vehicles although 4 wheel drifts were fun
The GT3...this was my favorite car. It did have a slightly higher amount of inherent understeer than the GT350 in stock form. The understeer wasn't a big deal though because it could all but be eliminated with some trail braking. Point the car into the corners with the brakes and the car would turn in no problem. It just takes some adjusting to your driving style but after you figure it out it's very rewarding and very stable. The GT3 is just over 3500lbs and the GT350 is just over 3700lbs (I have the MSO for my specific GT350 and it shipped at 3707lbs). So the GT350 is 200lbs heavier but has 50 more horsepower. After driving both cars on track and racing a few down the back straight at Road Atlanta the GT3 and GT350 are about even because of the PDK's lightning fast shifts. With a good driver I think the GT350 would just edge a GT3 in a drag race...The GT350R is faster than the GT3 with it's reduction in rotating mass in a drag race. I know this next topic is slightly contested because of the source but the GT350R was faster than the GT3 around the Nurburgring. Also, the GT350R I was with at Road Atlanta was slowly pulling away from me down the back straight not doubt because of the carbon wheels and Cup 2 tires. Time to find some light weight wheels for the GT350 that won't break the bank.
In conclusion, the cars we drove were amazing machines but at nearly $200k for a GT3 because of the demand and over $200k for the RS, I don't ever see myself spending that kind of money when the performance and fun factor can be had for much much less. That's just my opinion after my experience in the cars. Thanks
Your impressions are fine but the actual controlled instrumented performance numbers with comparable highly skilled drivers clearly show the GT4 is competitive with a GT350 in track performance. GT4 weighs less than 3000lbs. They are mid engined and have terrific balance. This makes up for lack of high horsepower especially on many tracks where high hp is not a real advantage. I don't know where you are getting your conclusion that a GT4 won't "keep up" with a GT350 when it is every measure as much track performance or damn close. Track impressions with don't amount to actual track documented perforrmance. Clearly a driver issue in the GT4.
GT4's were selling for $130K clearly over MSRP for some time but now a nice GT4 can be purchased for around $100K or even a little less. GT350 MSRP is considerably less at around $55K but at the time you were paying $130K for a GT4 you were paying $75K for a GT350. You are still paying in the $60K range + for a GT350 track pack and around $100K for a GT350R. Nearly $40K over list.
I see plenty GT350s sitting on used lots at Ford dealers right now. Two track packs have been sitting at Liccardi Ford in NJ for over 2 months. There are hundreds of Gt350's on Auto Trader right now and I read somewhere Ford is stopping GT350 production over the winter due to slow sales.
I drove a GT350 for about 1/2 hour. Nice car. I wasn't blown away. Cool but wouldn't give up my '12 Ingot & red LS for it. Track times and data put the GT350 slightly faster then the LS. R more so primarily due to 305 x 315 rubber. Thats a huge advantage over a Boss 302. Up the tires on the Boss its a more level playing field.
Sorry, but the GT3 is faster than the GT350 both in 0-60 and on track performance. Just is. Even the lighting lap times (a poor measure) had the GT3 lapping VIR over about 1 1/2 seconds faster than the R. As to the RS.... The R isn't even on the same playing field as the RS from 0-60, 0-100, braking or track times. Just isn't.
Is the RS worth over $200K? To many yes. Overwhelming demand established that. It was a 1 1/2 year build with a total of approximately 1500 RS's in the U.S. at the end.
Many wouldn't spend the $200K+ on an RS and they would be perfectly happy with a GT350R at $40K over list. I would have been happy with an R instead of an RS in many respects but I wasn't willing to spend $40K over for it but was willing to spend over MSRP for the RS. Why? Historically Shelbys don't hold there value except for 60's era examples. Porsche GT models do historically hold their value and even have appreciated in value. So while I spent more for the RS chances are it will retain its value if not increase over time.
With the R, I was confident that $100K for it was a losing proposition in a year or so. If I could have bought an R for $5K over that would have been a different story.
I think he GT350 is a tremendous performance value if you can get a track pack within $5K of MSRP. I would likely pick it over a GT4 myself. As to the R, at $100K I'm not as confident its a smart buy as it's main performance differentialor from the track pack are the tires and CF wheels.
For DE's which is what all these cars are for, I will give the Shelby's the edge in being able to track them with more relaxed attitude and concern as hammering into turns at twice high way speeds in a $55,000.00 car is less of a concern in the back of your mind than in a $250,000.00 car which effects the fun factor and the willingness to push that little bit harder to extract more performance and better lap times.
In the end its about fun, improving your driving skills and doing it safely ending the day in one piece.
The GT4 I drove was 3100lbs so it is a very light car. In the end the tires are the biggest equalizer for lap times.
Lightning lap is a joke...journalists driving the cars with no control measures. The motortrend laps are more accurate because they use Randy Pobst to set all the lap times and he's a race car driver.
You can get a base GT4 for $90k but they are still going with markups and would be tough to find at MSRP. Add the ceramic brakes, carbon bucket seats and you're at $110k. I picked up my fully optioned 2017 GT350 out the door for $60k with no markup including tax, title, and licensing. After all the fees that $110k GT4 would easily be $120k. Is it twice the car of my GT350, not in my opinion.
I am a previous Boss 302 owner. I bought my 2012 Boss brand new out the door for $40k because I got it tax free. After 5 years of tracking the car I traded it in for $30k. That helped in the purchase of the 350 because they subtracted the $30k trade in off the taxes I owed on the 350 which saved me another $1000 dollars.
The GT350 isn't the fastest sports car out there but for a turn key track car, bang for your buck I would argue it is up there in the top three if not number one. The 2018 GT350 is supposed to have a dual clutch transmission as an option and it's the gear box out of the Ford GT. It will be interesting to see the difference it makes in lap times.
Nice to see you out on the Track eating up Corvettes and pushing deep in the braking zones with your new Shelby GT350 TP. Both you and Russ do a great job publishing your Performance Track-Day Car vids.
Keep them coming, and have fun with your new GT350 TP.
Thanks for the kind words. It's the car not me, I'm just the stick monkey
I bought the car three weeks ago and it already has four track days and 4000 miles. Only thing I did to it was set tire pressures and change the oil three times already because I may be a little OCD about maintenance. Oh, and I went through a set of front brake pads already.
I'm interested to see where the GT500 falls in the Ford Performance lineup? If they do a TT 5.0L it will most likely be slightly heavier than the 350 due to the turbos, all the turbo plumbing, and the intercooler. Why doesn't Ford just stick the 3.5L from the Ford GT and call it good?
I'm waiting for an all aluminum bodied mustang to be next in the lineup. That could shave 200-300lbs off the car.
I think the best bang for your buck performance on this car would be light weight wheels, aluminum driveshaft, and stickier tires. The stock wheels weight 33lbs! There are aluminum wheels out there in the same size all the way down to 23lbs which would save 10lbs a corner. You can save another 20lbs off the driveshaft by going with a 1 piece. Another option is a lightweight battery that could save you anywhere from 10-15lbs. That's probably the quickest and easiest way to get some weight off the car and not mess with all the R&D that went into developing the wizardry of the magnetorheological damper programming and the handling of the car. Also, the stability control system is really good in "track mode". It doesn't interfere the way the Boss did but is still there in the background in case you really screw things up.
So I played with the car a little bit in "track mode" to see what it would do. While I was at NCM I tried drifting the car and once you reach a certain slip angle the car tells you no, and brings the back end back in line. So the long answer is no, I haven't been turning all the nannies off.
From reading the GT350 supplement it looks like if you put it in track mode then hold the traction control switch till you see a second indication that advance trac and traction control are off; that is when the nannies are actually off. I have yet to test that theory because as much as I like getting the car sideways I like bringing my car home in one piece and drifting the car destroys the tires and isn't nice for the differential. Maybe when I'm ready for a new set of tires I'll have some fun with it but at this point I like the car too much.