Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Steve McQueen Rides Again! The 2008 Ford Mustang Bullitt

Few will deny that the 1968 movie Bullitt staring Steve McQueen, is undoubtedly one of the greatest car movies ever made. Images of a black 68 Dodge Charger R/T and a green 68 Mustang GT tearing up the streets of San Francisco are engraved into the mind of every car nut. Thanks in part to both the movie and McQueen's popularity, Ford built a special edition Bullitt Mustang GT in 2001. The retro styled Mustang packed the punch and overall look of the the 68 GT used in the movie. But it wasn't quite what the doctor ordered.

Fast forward to 2006. Motor Trend wanted to have a photo shoot in San Francisco for their road test on the new Dodge Charger R/T and pair it with the all new Mustang GT. Ford agreed and took a new yellow GT and repainted it 1968 Highland Green for the shoot. In that article, there was a small tid bit that Ford had plans in the works for a new Bullitt Mustang for 2008. Just in time for the 40th anniversary of the movie.

It's finally official. The Bullitt Mustang will make a triumphant return in 2008. While the car has not been "officially" unveiled, that will happen at the Los Angeles Auto Show. We are treated to a press release and some press day pictures from a press event in San Francisco this week.

Along with Highland Green, the 2008 Bullitt will also be offered in basic black. The rest of the car has been given an even more impressive retro treatment. The entire car will be completely badge less. No pony emblems on the sides or grille, just like the original. There will be a faux gas cap on the back which will carry a special center with gun cross hairs and the Bullitt name. The grille will be solid black mesh, without a pony emblem and a simple, but effective chrome surround on the edge. 18 inch aluminum wheels will have gunmetal painted spokes, and while they have been available in a polished finish, evoke memory of the classic American Racing Torque Thrust wheels of the 60s.

The interior will be finished in black leather(hopefully with a retro seat pattern). The dashboard will be treated to a machine turned aluminum finish, that looks oh so cool.

The business end of the Bullitt is just as impressive. The motor will be the same 4.6 liter V8 found in all standard Mustang GTs, though for the Bullitt, Ford Racing was on hand to tweak the camshaft timing, new calibrations, and air intakes. The chassis and suspension have also been tuned to enhance the handling. Which includes sport springs, a strut tower bar, and more. The tuned exhaust has also been tweaked, thanks to digital enhancement of the movie, to match the original perfectly.

The 08 Bullitt will have a ground stomping 315 Horsepower with 325 Ft. Lbs. of torque. All of this is routed through a 6spd manual trans and the same rear end at the GT 500 Shelby with 3.73:1 gears.

For announced a production run of 7700 Bullitt editions. Each car will be numbered on the strut tower brace, rather than by a plaque on the dashboard. The Bullitt will begin to roll off the assembly line in the first quarter of 2008, and showing up in Showrooms just in time for the warm weather to hit. With 7000 cars bound for the U.S. and the last 700 bound for Canada. Pricing is expected to be around $31,075. So it's rather reasonably priced too. I'm going to put my order in now.

Look for more updates on this one.

Source: Autoblog.com