What happens when, at the height of the ‘90s super car craze, one of the world’s top automakers decides it wants to not only build a spiritual successor to a racing legend but also make it the fastest car in the world? The GT90 happens.
Yet another car that graced our CD-ROMS on the early Need for Speed games, this was Ford’s crazy 90's super car concept. No, it wasn’t 90 inches tall, but it was definitely to be interpretted as a tribute to the Ford GT40, as indicated by the vents on the nose and the cutaway roof design. But it also chauffeured in Ford’s “New Edge” design language that came about at the end of last millennium. The GT90 itself has one of the more polarizing designs of the super cars from the ‘90s with most people either loving it or hating it. Guess what camp I fall into? Come on, you know you love it. Some dude even built his own in his garage because its so awesome.
Built in six months by a small team with $3 million dollars burning a hole in their pockets, the GT90 set out to be the greatest supercar in the world. They started with bits and pieces from the then Ford-owned Jaguar XJ220, like the chassis and suspension. The engineers took two Modular V8 engines, cut two cylinders off each of them, then welded them together to make a V12. That wasn’t enough though, they slapped four Garrett turbos on the thing to make an asphalt melting 720hp and 660 lb-ft of the torques.
That meant 0-60 in 3 seconds. A possible top speed that could have rivaled the McLaren F1. The title of “Worlds Most Powerful Car”. But alas, the dreamers don’t make the business decisions, otherwise no one would make any money. The fully operational Ford GT90 was sentenced to be just a concept car and nothing more.
If you wanted to read more about the car, King George wrote a fantastic piece a few years back about the car and even included an old Top Gear clip with Jeremy Clarkson giving it a drive.
This is the Maisto 1:18 diecast version of the car. Its actually one of my first 1:18's I ever purchased and the casting is probably older than a lot of our fellow LaLD members. I was obsessed with this car as a youngster, having built a snap-together 1:25 plastic kit from Benny’s (RIP) and also owning the Hot Wheels car.
Its got everything you’d expect from an ancient Maisto, so lower your expectations and I’ll see if they can be met!
The yellow triangles (yes everything is a triangle) are actually the door handles. Push the button and the doors pop open; glass roof cutouts and all. The other things you see on the side there are blind spot sensors; pretty cool for 1995. Here on the model though, they’re just stickers.
The interior is all kinds of blue, because it was the ‘90s. You can’t hate on that exposed gear shifter though! The endless number of gauges are clumped together out of a piece of plastic, and only two of them have faces. Sticker faces.
Maisto missed one of the Ford’s triangles too; there should be a yellow one just under the airbag in the steering wheel. The knobs for the stereo controls look more like chrome pillars rising from the ocean rather than, you know, knobs.
On the back side we find, yes more triangles. Also a giant active rear wing. The wing can be articulated vertically or tilted forward, and will stand up for display in either orientation.
And you can’t tell because its a diecast model, but around the exhaust port were ceramic tiles like the ones used on the space shuttle. Because the exhaust was so hot it could have melted the car. Badass.
Also its worth mentioning that the car’s tires had “GT90" stamped into it’s tire treads. I really should have taken a picture of that...
Triangle all the things!!!!!!
What’s missing from the model are the integrated amber turn signals in the rear tail-lights. We’re also missing a red strip of LED’s across the rear of the glass roof, which was the 3rd brake light.
Call it ugly, a cheap old Maisto, whatever you want, but its one of “THE cars that got me into cars” so it deserves its place in my display case. In fact, its currently sandwiched between to a Kyosho and a Hot Wheels Elite.
These’s are so readily available on eBay, you have no excuse not to have one. Maiso even did a sleek black colorway. I literally just found one for less than $10 shipped. Maybe I’ll get it for a custom :)
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