Exploring the Five Driving Modes for the 2017 Ford GT

Owners wanted a simple way to make the most of this incredible auto, so Ford loaded it with easily changed modes, including Normal (for everyday driving), Wet (for inclement weather), Sport (for a bit more performance), Track (for the road course) and V-Max (for straight-line speed). The ride height is set to 120mm so speed bumps aren't a concern, while throttle response and gear changes are softened.

All of these drive modes are created to optimise the performance of the 638bhp, turbocharged, 3.5-litre, V6 engine nestled in the middle of the GT's chassis.

To reduce drag, and increase speed, V-Max mode folds away the large rear wing. That's why Ford engineers developed five driving modes to optimize the 2017 Ford GT's performance in any conditions -from everyday driving to all-out racing. Available in all driving modes except Wet, launch control simply requires depressing the brake pedal, building up revs with the throttle, and lifting off the brake when cued by a dashboard light. There's no longer a comfort feature available, while AdvanceTrac stability and traction control become driver-adjustable allowing three additional settings.

The Ford GT also features an advanced, yet easy-to-use launch control system that provides optimal traction for the flawless launch every time. "Driver-demand calibrations get more aggressive - where slight changes in throttle result in faster acceleration", explains Terzes. Like Track mode, it requires putting the vehicle into Park, in this case, so the rear spoiler and other aerodynamic elements can be stowed. The ride height drops to just under 2 inches, and the spring and damper rates are cranked to the maximum.

If you really want to cut loose at the racetrack, however, Track mode is where it's at. The rear wing also extends (it also extends in Normal and Sport modes but only at high speeds), adding to the downforce and serving as an air brake during heavy breaking maneuvers.

Track mode takes things in a more hardcore direction. In less than two seconds, you are ready to race. "Even coming from Sport, control is significantly different - dramatically so". One of the options is called V-Max, and it is the only one where the driver gets to access the full top speed of the GT. Along with lowering the ride height 50mm, this feature also shuts down all aerodynamic elements and keeps stability control active.

Both the throttle and transmission, meanwhile, are calibrated for smoothness while both the stability and traction control remain at their most alert.

  • Arturo Norris