The Ford Mustang GT4 will make its first race start in Australia at Phillip Island this weekend – though locals have to hold their horses for another few months before the road car arrives.

    Ford has renamed the April 12-14 event Shannons SpeedSeries round to the Ford Mustang 60 Years Race Phillip Island, celebrating – you guessed it – the 60th anniversary of the iconic pony car’s unveiling at the World’s Fair in New York.

    While the brand’s US division will launch a special edition model to mark the occasion on April 17, Australian fans of the Mustang can gather at Phillip Island to not only see the GT4 car compete in the Monochrome GT4 Australia championship but experience off-track exhibitions celebrating the famous nameplate.

    No members of the public will be turning up in the latest seventh-generation Ford Mustang however, with local deliveries still not underway despite the model’s global reveal in September 2022. Ford Australia most recently pushed back its arrival to the second half of 2024. 

    The Ford Mustang GT4 is being campaigned by Miedecke Motorsport, with 2024 Bathurst 6 Hour winner George Miedecke driving alongside 17-year-old Rylan Gray – who is racing in the Super2 Championship for Tickford Racing in a Mustang Supercar.

    Unlike the Mustangs competing in the Supercars Championship – which are built from a bespoke, control chassis with minimal parts from the road car carrying across – the GT4 racer uses the platform from its mass-production counterpart, albeit with major modifications.

    These include a racing roll cage, a paddle-shift sequential transmission, adjustable dampers, a massive front splitter and rear wing plus lightweight body panels.

    One requirement for GT4 cars is they have to use the engine found in production examples, meaning the new-generation Mustang’s 5.0-litre Coyote V8 carries across – though it’s not known whether the 373kW and 567Nm outputs from the US-delivered Dark Horse variant are changed.

    The entry list for the round is yet to be finalised, though other GT4 entries from prior events include the McLaren Artura, Mercedes-AMG GT and BMW M4, among others.

    While the Ford Mustang experienced success straight off the bat when it arrived in Supercars in 2019 – taking both the 2019 and 2020 titles with Scott McLaughlin and Dick Johnson Racing Team Penske – the nameplate has struggled to achieve wins since the sport moved to its new Gen3 regulations in 2023.

    A difference in technical parity between the Mustang and Chevrolet Camaro last year saw Ford’s challenger win just six out of 28 races, and the brand’s teams are yet to see the chequered flag first in 2024.

    MORE: Everything Ford Mustang

    Jordan Mulach

    Born and raised in Canberra, Jordan has worked as a full-time automotive journalist since 2021, being one of the most-published automotive news writers in Australia before joining CarExpert in 2024.

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