To kick off the 24 Hours of Le Mans weekend, Ford announced it would return to the race in 2016 with its the Detroit auto show. The Ford GT is a carbon-fiber supercar showing off Ford's performance technologies, such as its 600-horsepower twin-turbo 3.5-liter V-6 EcoBoost engine., first unveiled this year at
The Le Mans effort will be conducted by Chip Ganassi Racing, fielding two teams with a total for four cars. Drivers will be announced later.
The inspiration for the Ford GT, the GT40, dominated the 24 Hours of Le Mans endurance race in the late '60s, and Ford marks the 50th anniversary of its first win, in 1966, with the 2016 entry. However, the new GT won't compete in the vaunted LMP class, currently owned by Audi with its R18 diesel hybrids. It will see action in the GTE Pro series, won by Ferrari 458 Italias the last couple of years. The GTE Pro series is designed for race-prepped production cars.
A US audience will get to see the Ford GT's debut in January of next year in Daytona, the beginning of the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship. Ford noted in a press release that Ganassi will run its teams for the full series of the FIA World Endurance Championship, which includes Le Mans, and the IMSA TUDOR United SportsCar Championsip, which includes the Rolex 24 at Daytona endurance race.