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This example has been freshly inspected (May 2023) and the following history as documented extensively by the world's leading authority on the Ford GT40.
Since 1960, Henry Ford II wanted to have a Ford race at Le Mans. After dealings with Ferrari fell through, Ford decided to produce his own car and began negotiations with Lola Cars manager Eric Broadley. The agreement between the two called for a yearlong collaboration that included the sale of two Lola MK 6 chassis to Ford. Soon after Ford hired ex-Aston Martin team manager John Wyer to work with Ford Motor Co. engineer Roy Lunn on what was to become the Ford GT.
The original GT40 and MK1, designed by Lunn, was prepared at the specially established, Ford Advanced Vehicles in the UK. Abbey Panels constructed the advanced monocoque chassis and the drive train finally chosen was the 289 Ford V8 mated to a Coletti transaxle. During the GT40's racing history a variety of Ford engines and ultimately a ZF transaxle were used. The Ford GT made its debut at Nurburgring in May 1964 and followed up the appearance with 24 Hours of Le Mans. The cars failed to finish both races, a devastating blow to Team Ford. Although they were not successful at Le Mans in '64 or '65, their obvious potential led Ford to continue racing them and in 1966 Ford and the MKII made American racing history with a dominating one, two, and three finish over Ferrari at Le Mans.