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CAMPING IN A 2020 FORD MUSTANG SHELBY GT500, FOR SCIENCE

The GT500 Makes For An Ultimate Grand Touring Car, But Can You Comfortably Sleep In It?

Ford Mustang Shelby GT500
Photo Credit: Manoli Katakis, Muscle Cars & Trucks

It was 12:30 AM last Friday. Saturday, technically. It was at that time that I just said “screw it, I’m sleeping in the Mustang.” I just didn’t want to put up with setting up my Marmot tent in the dark on the middle of what was once the tarmac of a B-52 bomber base. Not that I haven’t done it a dozen times before. But the curiosity of what it would be like to get 8 hours of sleep in a Race Red 2020 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 took hold.

At first, I just reclined the two-tone Recaro leather seat. It didn’t fold back all that much, and it felt like I was trying to catch a nap on the window seat of an airplane on the way to Europe (hey, remember flying?). That kind of role play isn’t what I’m looking for at this time, however. So, my self-preserving reptilian brain began to think of ways to improve this experiment. I slid the Recaro fronts all the way forward, and spilled myself into the back seats – notoriously small in pony cars, you probably know. I attempted to seek comfort around the confines of the impressively deep rear seat buckets and narrowing walls, but it proved to be too much for my stocky frame. The tent definitely seemed like a better idea than this.

Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 Camping
Might as well be the Four Seasons.

Then I remembered something. The rear seat pass-through! With the rear seats folded down, and the 13.5 cu-ft. trunk empty of stuff it could, maybe, give me the sleeping space I’m looking for. And if it didn’t, well, there’s always the insurance of the Marmot just outside with a pile of camping gear.

Eureka! Coupled with my inflatable sleeping pad along with a couple of pillows, an overnight slumber in the 2020 Mustang Shelby GT500 turned out to be one of the better rests I’ve had on an empty airfield. The sound-proofing of the cabin also helped muffle the sound of the C-Mod drivers warming up their engines at the crack of dawn. They’re like roosters, but worse.

My colleagues even made note of my lack of grogginess compared to past autocross events. I suppose that points to the experiment of sleeping in the GT500 a success. Although, I wouldn’t recommend it for anybody taller than 5’9″.

Did this rest help me secure a win in the Super Stock class during Saturday’s double header? Yes, but then again, I was the only entry.

Photo Credit: Neil Britton, Muscle Cars & Trucks

Written by Manoli Katakis

Detroit Region SCCA Member and founder of MC&T. Automotive Media Jedi Knight. Not yet the rank of Master.

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