One of the best parts about being part of the automotive industry are the people you get to meet. From the general enthusiast, to the company executives to the celebrities, we are very fortunate to be in a position where we can truly experience the industry as a whole. Another bonus are the friends you make along the way. Take my buddy Roger Garbow for example. Roger is the founder of Full Throttle Marketing, an automotive and motor sports marketing firm in Connecticut. He crashed his first hand-built go-kart at 8-years old, and was once pulled over by a NYC Police officer while driving a Porsche 997 GT3 Cup race car on 11th Avenue in New York City (true story). So when we met it was a no brainer that we’d eventually become good friends. Roger emailed me about a recent experience that he had thrashing a new 2011 Ford Mustang GT around the corners of Monticello Motor Club’s 4.2 mile circuit up in Monticello, NY. He was also kind enough to put together a little synopsis of his day, complete with video. Oh… and just for the record, the Mustang GT really is as good as he says it is.
• 2011 Mustang GT: Driver’s Log
By Full Throttle Marketing’s Roger Garbow
As I crested the narrow stone bridge in second gear, I gave the throttle a little boot to hear the exhaust echo off the walls. A god-awful hiss came from my left, through the open driver’s window. A turkey vulture, waiting atop the wall for some tasty road-kill, got freaked by the Mustang GT’s bark, and spread its wings to the full 6-foot span, while voicing displeasure through its bizarre call. The big bird’s reaction was not all that dissimilar from my own after spending a week with the 2011 Mustang GT. Expecting tired road kill, I was treated to a fast, fun, and surprisingly nimble sport coupe.
The 2011 Mustang GT is not just the best Mustang GT ever, or even the best muscle car for under $40k. The GT is now a viable option for anyone looking to spend $35K on a sport coupe.
I hear this all too often: American cars suck… muscle cars don’t handle… the fit and finish on Detroit’s iron is terrible. Listen up—It’s time for my fellow enthusiasts to shelve the pre-conceived ideas and stereotypes. Open your minds before you open your wallets. This car is for real. Of course the new 412 HP 5.0 liter V-8 is fast and sounds great. But surprisingly, the GT now handles and stops like it’s European competitors. How’s .94 g on the skidpad and 60-0 in 116 feet? For comparison, the BMW 335i pulls .91 g and takes 119 feet for the stop from 60.
Equipped with the Brembo brake package and 3.73 rear, the GT won’t embarrass you at a track day. I had a blast hustling it around Monticello Motor Club’s long course, touching 145 on the straight lap after lap, with no brake fade. The grip from the upgraded Pirellis combined with the tight suspension made the turns something to savor, not fear. Sure, the retro-look seats have about as much lateral support as a park bench, but the car’s fit and finish is excellent, the SYNC system rocks, and the billet ball-topped shifter is precise and way, too cool.
Maybe Ford should consider a zombie edition. Like those characters inhabiting my favorite TV show, the Mustang GT has risen from the dead and is packing some serious attitude.