Natchez Ford adds $166,000 GT to showroom

Published 12:00 am Sunday, February 19, 2006

NATCHEz &8212; This car isn&8217;t for just anybody.

For that matter, it&8217;s not for sale. Not yet, anyway.

The 2005 Ford GT, the company&8217;s top of the line sportscar, costs $166,000, and Natchez Ford has one.

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The GT is Ford&8217;s top of the line sportscar, and only 1,800 were made this year.

General Manager Brad Yarbrough said the dealership earned the car by receiving high customer satisfaction ratings.

&8220;The reason we could get this is our high customer satisfaction. It&8217;s nice to be recognized by our customers for doing a good job,&8221; Yarbrough said. &8220;This car is just a symbol of that.&8221;

Only three Mississippi Ford dealerships were given the GT, Yarbrough said.

But don&8217;t expect to test drive this car. Yarbrough said he hasn&8217;t even driven it himself.

&8220;I didn&8217;t let temptation get the best of me,&8221; Yarbrough said.

Instead, the car, black with white racing stripes, is sitting in a display in the dealership for customers to check out.

&8220;People are welcome to come check it out, take a look,&8221; Yarbrough said.

The car, which has a &8220;Not for sale&8221; sign on its windshield, will be on display for at least the next 60 days and possibly longer before it will be sold, Yarbrough said.

The car is modeled after the 1960s GT models that Ford developed to race in the Le Mans circuit. Ford won several championships during that era. Three years ago, the company announced it would make a production car inspired by the racing model.

The two-seater has a 550-horsepower 5.4-liter V8 engine with a six-speed transmission that can take the car from 0-60 mph in 3.3 seconds, according to Ford.

The speedometer maxes out at 220 mph, though;s reviewer said that might be a little optimistic. Ford promotional materials say the car is capable to going more than 200 mph.

The manufacturer&8217;s suggested retail price is $149,995 for the base model, but the one at Natchez Ford has an upgraded stereo, wheels and paint job that push the price up to $166,945 for anyone looking to purchase the car.