By now, you’ve seen and heard the meaty howl of the 5.2-liter flat-plane crankshaft V-8 that Ford will debut on the 2016 Shelby GT350 and GT350R Mustang. We have no doubt that the engine’s potent 526-hp and sensational soundtrack will be both satisfying and addicting. And if there’s one less thing we have to think about in order to focus on keeping the racing-bred muscle-car on the pavement, we’ll take it. Announced today as standard fitment on the 2016 Shelby GT350 and GT350R Mustang, a racing-style shift-light indicator will make the top-shelf pony-car even better prepared to dominate at the track.
Shift-light indicators are familiar sights on high-octane exotics from, say, Ferrari or Lamborghini. The feature helps drivers in high-performance settings focus on the road ahead, without needing to glance at the tachometer, while still keeping an eye on engine speed. The Performance Shift Light Indicator in the 2016 Shelby GT350 Mustang is projected as head-up display onto the windshield, directly in the driver’s line of sight.
Interestingly, the idea came to Ford Performance electrical engineer Mike Makled when the collision warning and emergency braking system activated while driving a Ford Taurus SHO. “I thought, ‘Wait a minute, why don’t we use that technology for our shift light on the GT350?’” said Makled in a statement. “With a few tweaks, it could have a big effect on high-performance driving.”
Ford’s shift-light indicator for the 2016 Shelby GT350 can switch between three settings. Tach mode, meant for street use, is set up so the amber-colored LED lights build from left to right resembling that of a digital tachometer. Switching the Track mode makes the display light up from the outside ends toward the center as revs increase, flashing as single bar when it’s time to shift. Drag mode will keep things simple; the display screen totally blank until the preset rpm is reached, at which point a solid amber bar of light will flash.
For a closer look at how the Performance Shift Light Indicator works on the 2016 Shelby GT350 Mustang, check out the video below.