REVIEW: GT Spirit Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 •

REVIEW: GT Spirit Ford Mustang Shelby GT500

Without a doubt one of our favourite models, and we think still to this day one of their best-executed models by GT Spirt is their version of the 1:18 scale Ford Mustang Shelby GT350R.  You can read the full review if you choose, just use the link above.  We took a exert from our final thought.

“This replica of the Ford Mustang Shelby GT350R reinforced why I love the brand.  Good price point, excellent execution and great specimens.  Until someone can provide a diecast version with opening bits, this model will sit proudly next to the other Fords in my collection.  Don’t pass on this one, she comes highly recommended” 

Under the microscope, today is one of the team’s latest issue, the 1:18 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 based on the 2020 platform.  Can this latest replica live up to the GT350R?  Please read on.

The Shelby GT500 is more aggressive, faster, and believe it or not this Mustang is more nimble in the corners too.  Did we mention it is the most powerful production Mustang of all time?  760 ponies to be exact.  We think Mr. Shelby is surely smiling with approval.  The base model starts at just under $74,000 US.  The model here features the optional carbon fibre track package (adjustable rear wing, front dive wings and carbon fibre wheels).

The Blue and White stripes exterior are an ideal match for this aggressive monster.  GT Spirit executes the paint and stripping well.  In 2020 Ford is actually offering painted stripes, as traditionally these were decals.  As for the overall look and design, again very good marks to GT Spirit for achieving the magic and essence of design.  This is a resin and sealed model so when it comes to shutlines and panel gaps both ingredients measure up well.  So well, in fact, the results are better than the production car LOL.

Moving to the front one will notice the immediate difference over the GT350, air flows is near twice as great.  Also, the addition of upper hood cooling vent provides additional air circulation and balances the overall aerodynamics of the car.

All opening on the front fascia is executed with metal grilles.  Nice to see the “GT500” logo etched into the right side of the front crossbar, Cobra emblem and “Shelby” across the centre of the lower splitter.  Just a few elements that add to the overall authenticity – one small issue is GT Spirt doesn’t define the carbon weave within these parts.

You’ll notice some more defined and closer images from the team moving forward, we invested a macro lens.  Let us know how you like the images?

The upper hood does provide the additional hood locking pins and as mentioned the centre cooling scope/vent.  All is nicely completed and defined with care.

The rear is capped with a track package adjustable wing.  The two braces which adhere to the wing to the car are really basic in design and do not provide the adjustment points (this is manually adjustable wing).  On the positive side, the carbon fibre weave is defined throughout the spoiler itself. As for the remaining rear design, good marks!  Quality taillights, massive exhaust tips and Cobra emblem are found.  The undercarriage does continue to define the exhaust, but it the most basic form.

Wheels are 20” track package rollers.  The key here is they are manufactured in carbon fibre, unfortunately, this doesn’t translate into scale.  GT Spirit went forward with Gloss-Black finish only.  Behind the wheels, massive rotors and Brembo Red calipers are found in all four corners.  If we had one complaint we find our example’s front stance a somewhat too aggressive when measured up with the 1:1.

Inside the Shelby GT500, the interior is all business and we like it!  On the plus side all interior components are present and for the most part, well-executed.  One thing Mustang fans will miss is the manual transmission with a shifter.  The GT500 is equipped with a dual-clutch trans with simple dial in place of shifter – side paddles on the steering wheel are present.  The White accent bits throughout the interior are a plus and the Recaro seats with applicable fabric seatbelts are accurate.  Carbon fibre dash details are present with applicable production badge on the passenger side.  Admirable attention to detail GT Spirit.  On the negative side, there is no interior flocking found.

We believe GT Spirit has done well with its version of the Ford Mustang Shelby GT500.  The model features a great exterior colour combo, overall lines reflect the original well.  The wheels aren’t perfect, however, missing carbon weave aside they definitely shape up.  Inside the interior continues with the exterior theme of overall excellence with little to nothing for us to complain about.  This GT Spirit Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 is a solid and capable replica and one we’re sure will find a place in many collector collections.  Is it as good as the GT350R?  Possibly, but we’ll give the GT350R a slight nod since it was first from the team.  Enjoy the pics!

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10 Responses to "REVIEW: GT Spirit Ford Mustang Shelby GT500"

  1. Anthony White says:

    I bought this model and its excellent…now is the GT Spirit Ford Gt
    the same color blue?

  2. Frédéric Brunet says:

    Love the resulting macro photos! It really helps appreciate the model, its details, its craftmanship, and the team’s effort to always improve the reading experience on your site! Bravo! ;-)

  3. Jamie says:

    The model looks excellent, except for one minor flaw (but major for me). Pass-through brake rotors and calipers are a must for me when purchasing a model; it adds so much detail and realism. As for this model – unless it is a shadow in the photo causing this, it appears quite obvious that the rotor and caliper are fixed in place, and that there is a large gap between them. The rotor looks as if it isn’t a complete circular shape. Please correct me if I’m wrong.

    I have been a long time fan of AutoArt, and one of the main reasons is because of the consistency and quality of the pass-through rotor and caliper detail on every model they’ve ever produced. Another reason is for the opening bits. I’m a huge S550 Mustang fan, so naturally I own an example of their GT350R model. However before it was released, I purchased a variant of GT Spirit’s S550 – the red Shelby GT. Overall, I am very impressed with this model. The body lines are crisp and both the headlight and tail light detail is fantastic – I would say superior to the AutoArt GT350R. Where it falls short though, to me, is in the brakes department. Although the detail is satisfactory (drilled and slotted rotors that have faint friction marks from the calipers), it still can’t compare to AutoArt’s brakes.

    That being said, the brake detail on my GT Spirit Shelby GT model are far superior to how the brakes appear on this GT500 model. They look very cheaply-made and toy-like. To me it is a massive disappointment and would be the only thing stopping me from purchasing this model. I wish GT Spirit would put a bit more effort into this area of their models. Full access would be great too, obviously. Otherwise, I have no additional complaints about their models!

    • DS Team says:

      “GT Spirit Shelby GT model are far superior to how the brakes appear on this GT500 model.”

      Yes, we agree, seems they moved to this more flat, static a year or so back. We actually noticed the difference and pointed it out… Sorry, we don’t remember specifically which review it was. This is definitely a cost cutting measure. Is the move worth the level of execution, no, but GT Spirit does think so. For a static scale representation they still offer very good value and a decent level-set of overall expectation. If you compare to the recently reviewed TOP Marques Molser MT900S, you will see what we mean. With TM you pay more and receive a lot less in our opinion. At the end of the day, we to prefer full 360 access, BUT the GT Spirit does look sharp on the shelf until something better comes along…

  4. Stephane Demers says:

    Well I have mixed feelings as I was hoping for a better model. Mine suffer from glue marks here and there, also only 3 wheels touches the ground… The brakes rotor and calipers feels CHEAP, lacking depth and realism. The photoetched grills are a must but theu should have been like on their Demon, with more depth behind them. Not a fan of the big plastic air duct on the hood. And on my model the rear snake is clearlu off center. Sooooo well, not that satisfied.

  5. amlv20 says:

    I never got the GT350R from GT Spirit and we all know what happened to those in the secondary the first chance to get this GT500 I jumped on it.and was extremely disappointed. Stance is wrong, tire profile is wrong, no carbon detail on a carbon package, solid grills, painted wheels, and my god those ugly tin discs they try to pass as brake rotors and the cheesy calipers what a joke. Yes it has weight and feels solid, but to me its feels more like a brick of clay and resin that was sculpted to shape and had wheels slapped on and not actually assembled. Since I missed out on the GT350R i picked up the Autoart like three years later which is a beauty and more realistic detail my god their rotors looked like they miniaturized the real thing. I hope AUTOart or someone makes a better version of the GT500 soon, it deserves it

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