Hillsborough Concours d’Elegance 2021 Will Have Ford Performance Cars Display
Many of the best fast Fords will be on display, including some very rare cars
The Hillsborough Concours d’Elegance has, for 65 years, been the premier place to see exotic, rare, and beautiful cars in absolutely pristine condition. Over the years, the event has grown from a few cars to over 200 treasured and collectible cars, dressed to the nines for the Concours.
For 2021, with the event taking place from July 16 to 18, the Concours will host a chronological evolution display of Ford performance cars, from the very first sports version of a Ford car to the latest and greatest Ford supercar. The special display brings together many rare cars, some of them one of only a few ever made or remaining, with the owners of the cars collaborating with Hillsborough to make the centerpiece display happen.
The oldest car in the display will be the very first Ford sports car, the 1915 Ford Model T Speedster. It is, in fact, the first Ford performance production car to carry the Ford badge, but not actually be fully manufactured by Ford, much like how companies like Saleen, Roush, and RTR work with Mustangs today.
Powered by the legendary inline-four, 2.9L Model T engine, the Speedster on display was built racing in mind, and features one of the first racing applications of a water jacket thermosyphon. This cooling system used natural convection with a large amount of water around the engine to push heat out the top of the bonnet, hence the flaps on it to allow that head to be carried away by the air passing over them.
The centerpiece of the display, however, is a 1967 Ford GT40 MkIV, which is famously known as the G7A J-9 chassis. This specific car was made as a test chassis, fully built up to race spec, but using the newly designed 7L, 3 valves per cylinder V8 for Can-Am racing. This engine was one of the first full cast aluminum V8’s and produced over 500 HP, moving a fully aluminum honeycomb body on a lightweight aluminum chassis. In other words, it was fast, but it never actually raced, having only completed test runs around several tracks in the hands of an Italian-American known as Mario Andretti.
The display also celebrates the involvement of Carroll Shelby in guiding the Ford performance program through the 1960s, with no less than 7 Shelby cars on display. The ultra-rare 1964 Shelby USRRC 289 Cobra is one of the display cars, but its much better known big brother, the 1965 Shebly 427 Competition Cobra, was the result of that partnership with Ford.