Ford Axes The Shelby GT350 And GT350R, But It’s Not All Bad News

The limited-run 'Heritage Edition' was a final send-off for the model

In more Ford news beyond the recent leadership change, another mainstay for the past few years is bowing out for 2020: the Mustang Shelby GT350. The herald of the high-revving “Voodoo” flat-plane-crank V-8 that first debuted in 2015 is rolling off into the sunset.

Ford issued a statement confirming the model will be discontinued Thursday. “With the 760 horsepower Shelby GT500 now in full stride, we will finish production of Shelby GT350 and GT350R this fall as planned.”

When it first launched five years ago, the Shelby GT350 was a serious step over the standard Mustang GT. That engine produces 526 horsepower and 429 lb-ft of torque, and — lest anyone think this isn’t an enthusiast’s car — comes exclusively with a six-speed manual transmission. Now, it’s a solid stepping stone between the GT and the Shelby GT500, but stock will likely dry up soon after the last GT350 rolls off the assembly line.

In case you didn’t already know, Shelby GT350 is a masterpiece among Mustangs. So if you have the means, to quote a certain cult classic, we highly recommend picking one up. Before long, this car will almost certainly be a collector’s item.

There’s a new Mustang (trim) coming next year

Still, Ford doesn’t plan to leave that gap unfilled in 2021. The GT350’s passing “makes the way for new additions to excite our passionate Mustang fans for the 2021 model year — including the limited-edition Mach 1.”

It’s not just the GT350 with a different name, albeit the Mach 1 does borrow several parts from its predecessor. The 5.2-liter V-8 won’t make an appearance here, instead using the 5.0-liter Coyote engine instead. Ford is currently mum on exactly how much power it makes (future product and all that). Needless to say though, it has some properly large shoes to fill.

But why is the Mach 1 itself a “limited edition”? Word has it the next-generation Mustang is coming after 2021, where we’ll see a complete revamp of Ford’s iconic pony car. Even bigger changes could be in store there, including electrification. For now, at least, the V-8s continue their thunderous charge on America’s streets, with the GT500 now being the last Shelby-branded model in the current lineup.