Ford GT90

The Ford GT90 Is the McLaren F1 Competitor That Never Was


In the 1990s, a rivalry was brewing in the automotive world that had enthusiasts on the edge of their seats. On one side, the iconic McLaren F1, a supercar that set the benchmark for speed and performance. On the other, the enigmatic Ford GT90, a formidable challenger eager to dethrone its competitors. But what many people don’t realize is that the GT90 never made it to production, leaving its rivalry with the F1 forever unfulfilled. With its futuristic design and jaw-dropping power, the GT90 had the potential to be a worthy adversary to the acclaimed McLaren F1. Its V12 engine, developed in collaboration with quad-turbo technology, promised mind-blowing acceleration and top speed. Sadly, despite the excitement and anticipation surrounding the GT90, Ford ultimately decided to cancel its production, leaving the automotive world wondering what could have been. In this article, we dive deep into the untold story of the Ford GT90, exploring its design, performance capabilities, and the factors that led to its demise. Join us as we unravel the mystery behind this unreleased McLaren F1 competitor and reflect on the rivalry that never truly had a chance to unfold.

The story behind the Ford GT90

The Ford GT90 is a high-performance concept car developed and manufactured by Ford. Unveiled in January 1995 at the Detroit Auto Show, it is a spiritual successor to the Ford GT40, featuring a mid-engined design and “New Edge” design philosophy. The car is built around a honeycomb-section aluminum monocoque with carbon fiber body panels. It is powered by a 5.9 L quad-turbocharged DOHC V12 engine, producing an estimated 720 hp and 660 lb-ft of torque, mated to a 5-speed manual transmission. The GT90 was the first Ford to display the company’s “New Edge” design philosophy. Despite initial plans for production, the car remained a concept. It has made appearances in various video games and was featured on Top Gear. The Ford GT90 remains a significant and inspiring concept in automotive history.

Design and features of the Ford GT90

 Ford GT90
The Ford GT90 Is the McLaren F1 Competitor That Never Was

The Ford GT90 is a high-performance concept car that was developed and manufactured by Ford. It was unveiled in January 1995 at the Detroit Auto Show and is a spiritual successor to the Ford GT40, featuring a mid-engined design and “New Edge” design philosophy. The GT90 is built around a honeycomb-section aluminum monocoque with carbon fiber body panels, and it is powered by a 5.9 L quad-turbocharged DOHC V12 engine, producing an estimated 720 hp and 660 lb-ft of torque, mated to a 5-speed manual transmission. The GT90 was the first Ford to display the company’s “New Edge” design philosophy, which manifested itself in cars like the MK1 Ka, Focus, Puma, and Cougar in the late Nineties and early-Noughties. The car’s body panels were molded from carbon fiber, and it had a laminated glass dome to cover the occupants rather than a conventional roof, and a spoiler that would raise at high speeds. The GT90’s interior was finished in bright-blue leather, and it had a tinted, laminated glass bubble over the cockpit. The GT90 was a test bed of advanced technology and design, and it incorporated advanced technology with a mixture of flat planes, angles, glass, and triangular shapes that seemingly all collided together.The GT90 was worked around a honeycomb-segment aluminum monocoque and its body sheets were formed from carbon fiber. The GT90 was a significant concept in automotive history and remains an inspiring design to this day.

Performance specifications of the Ford GT90

  • Engine: Quad-Turbocharged 6.0-liter V12Output
  • Transmission: Five-Speed Manual
  • Suspension: Coil Springs with Double Wishbones Front and Rear
  • Brakes: Ventilated Discs (328mm / 12.91 inch) Front and Rear
  • Wheels: Front: 275/35 R18, Rear: 355/30 R19
  • Tires: Customized with “GT90” etched into the tread23
  • Weight: Approximately 1,451 kilograms (3,199 pounds)
  • Drag Coefficient: Not specified
  • Acceleration: 0 to 60 mph (0 to 96 km/h): 3.1 Seconds
  • Acceleration: 0 to 100 km/h (0 to 62 mph): Not specified3

Please note that the GT90 was never intended for mass production, so actual performance figures may differ slightly if it had gone into series manufacturing.

The unreleased McLaren F1 competitor

Based on the available search results, there is no mention of an unreleased McLaren F1 competitor specifically. The search results discuss the McLaren MCL38, which is the newest Formula One car released by McLaren for the 2024 season. Therefore, the information requested does not exist within the given context. If there were an unreleased McLaren F1 competitor, it would likely be discussed in motoring publications and media platforms similar to the ones used here. Since none exists in these sources, it appears that there isn’t an unreleased McLaren F1 competitor

Comparison between the Ford GT90 and McLaren F1

FeatureFord GT90McLaren F1
Year Introduced19951992
PowertrainMid-mounted 6.0-liter V12, 720 HP, 660 lb-ft TorqueMid-mounted BMW S70/2 6.1-liter V12, 627 HP, 479 lb-ft Torque
Transmission5-speed manual6-speed manual
Acceleration0-60 mph in 3.1 sec0-60 mph in 3.2 sec
Top SpeedEstimated 235 mph200+ mph
LayoutRear mid-engined, rear-driveRear mid-engined, rear-drive
Production StatusConcept carLimited production
Price (at introduction)~$3 Million£540,000 ($800,000 USD)

Both vehicles represent pinnacles of their respective eras, with the Ford GT90 being a concept car that pushed boundaries in terms of design and performance, while the McLaren F1 became a reality and established itself as one of the greatest supercars of all time. The GT90 was designed to rival the McLaren F1, but due to financial constraints, it never entered production

Reasons for the cancellation of the Ford GT90

The Ford GT90 concept car was cancelled primarily because of several factors:
Financial considerations: Producing the GT90 would have been extremely expensive, especially considering the development costs and the potential price point for a limited number of units.
Market positioning: By the time the GT90 was ready for consideration, the McLaren F1 had already gained considerable popularity, making it difficult for the GT90 to establish a strong market presence.
Competition: The GT90 faced stiff competition from existing supercars like the McLaren F1, which offered superior performance and prestige.

Timing: The GT90 was conceived during a period when Ford was focusing on other projects, including the development of the Ford GT, which ultimately replaced the GT90 as Ford’s flagship supercar.
Technical challenges: The GT90 presented various technical challenges, particularly regarding heat management for the engine and exhaust system.

These factors led to the decision to abandon the GT90 concept and focus on other projects, such as the Ford GT. Despite its cancellation, the GT90 continues to inspire fans and designers alike, serving as a testament to Ford’s innovative spirit and commitment to pushing the limits of automobile design

The legacy of the Ford GT90

Ford GT90
The Ford GT90 Is the McLaren F1 Competitor That Never Was

The Ford GT90, a concept car that was unveiled at the 1995 Detroit Auto Show, has left a lasting legacy in the automotive industry. The GT90 was designed to be a spiritual successor to the iconic Ford GT40, and it was intended to rival the McLaren F1 in terms of performance and prestige. The GT90 boasted a quad-turbocharged 6.0-liter V12 engine that produced 720 horsepower and 660 pound-feet of torque, and it was estimated to have a top speed of 235 miles per hour.

Despite its impressive performance specifications and unique design, the GT90 was never produced due to financial constraints, market positioning, competition, timing, and technical challenges. However, the GT90’s legacy lives on, as it inspired Ford’s later supercar projects, such as the Ford GT. The GT90 also served as a showcase for Ford’s “New Edge” design philosophy, which emphasized the use of many edges and angles in automotive design.

The GT90 remains a beloved concept car among car enthusiasts, and it continues to inspire designers and engineers to push the boundaries of automotive design and performance. The lone GT90 concept is currently on display at the Hajek Motorsports Museum in Ames, Oklahoma, where it attracts visitors from all over the world

Collectability and value of the Ford GT90

The Ford GT90, a high-performance concept car, holds significant collectible value due to its unique design, advanced technology, and limited production status. Despite never being intended for full-scale production, the GT90’s rarity and historical significance have contributed to its desirability among automotive enthusiasts and collectors.
The sole existing GT90 concept car is currently housed at the Hajek Motorsports Mu

seum in Ames, Oklahoma, under the ownership of Brent Hajek, an oil and gas tycoon. The car’s acquisition by Hajek in 2012 was a significant event, as it rescued the GT90 from potential destruction and secured its preservation for future generations. The car’s value is further emphasized by the fact that Hajek has declined numerous offers to purchase the vehicle, indicating its irreplaceable nature and enduring appeal.

In addition to its physical preservation, the GT90 has been featured in various media outlets, video games, and automotive exhibitions, further enhancing its cultural significance and desirability among collectors. Its striking design, innovative features, and powerful performance specifications have cemented its status as a highly sought-after automotive artifact.
The GT90’s estimated value is not publicly disclosed; however, its unique provenance, historical importance, and technological innovation contribute to its high collectible worth. As a one-of-a-kind concept car that represents a pivotal era in automotive design and engineering, the Ford GT90 holds a special place in the pantheon of collectible automobiles


In conclusion, the Ford GT90 stands as a remarkable and influential concept car that has left an indelible mark on the automotive industry. Despite never entering full-scale production, the GT90’s legacy endures through its innovative design, advanced technology, and exceptional performance specifications. As a spiritual successor to the iconic Ford GT40, the GT90 was designed to rival the best supercars of its time, exemplifying Ford’s commitment to pushing the boundaries of automotive engineering.
The GT90’s collectible value is underscored by its rarity, historical significance, and cultural impact. Its unique provenance and preservation at the Hajek Motorsports Museum highlight its enduring appeal among enthusiasts and collectors. The car’s influence extends beyond its physical presence, as it continues to inspire future generations of designers and engineers.

Ultimately, the Ford GT90 represents a convergence of artistry, innovation, and automotive excellence. Its story serves as a testament to the enduring allure of concept cars and their ability to captivate and inspire generations of automotive enthusiasts. The GT90’s place in automotive history is secure, and its legacy will continue to shine brightly in the annals of collectible automobiles.


Why was the Ford GT90 never produced?

One of the most significant mysteries surrounding the GT90 is why it never saw the production line. While we can speculate that the astronomical production costs and the extreme engineering requirements may have played a role, the exact reason remains a company secret.

Is the McLaren F1 the greatest car ever?

This is a McLaren F one, and it is quite simply the greatest car ever made. Probably around 20 million for this example, which is an insane number. But then again, this car has an impressive legacy. It was the factory fastest production car in the world

What video games is the Ford GT90 in?

The Ford GT90 appeared in the video games Need for Speed II, Sega GT 2002, Sega GT Online, Ford Racing 2, Ford Racing 3, Gran Turismo 2, Rush 2: Extreme Racing USA, TOCA Race Driver 2, Top Drives, Project Gotham Racing 3 and Ford Street Racing.