Automakers have a long history of auctioning off special cars at major auctions, and the proceeds generally go to a worthy charity. That familiar scenario is set to repeat as Ford puts the very first production Shelby GT500 up for auction at the 2019 Barrett-Jackson event on January 18, 2019, in Arizona. That’s just four days after the car’s planned debut at the rapidly approaching Detroit Auto Show.
Ford hasn’t yet given up all the details for its latest super-powered pony car. We know it will have more than 700 horsepower, and that those horses will from a supercharged V8 engine. Rumors point to a version of the 5.2-liter engine found in the GT350, minus that car’s flat-plane crankshaft, topped with a 2.65-liter Eaton supercharger that pumps out 12 psi of boost. We’ve heard reports of both six-speed manual and seven-speed dual-clutch gearboxes routing all that power to the rear wheels.
The winner of Lot 3,008 will get the chance to option out their GT500 any way they see fit. But they won’t actually take possession of the car for a while – Ford says the 2020 Shelby GT500 will start filtering out to the public in the fall of 2019.
Ford says it donates more than $2 million annually to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, which is the charity that will receive proceeds from the GT500 bearing VIN 001. The automaker has contributed a total of $60 million to the JDRF over the last 35 years.
Toyota plans to auction off the very first 2020 Supra at Barrett-Jackson, too. Proceeds of that sale will be donated to the American Heart Association and the Bob Woodruff Foundation. Here’s hoping both of these special vehicles bring in a healthy amount for their respective charities.