People are talking about the rivalry between these two legendary auto makers in anticipation of the release of the film, “Ford v Ferrari.” The film is a biographical drama of automotive visionary Carroll Shelby (Matt Damon) and his British driver, Ken Miles (Christian Bale).
Shelby is renowned for his Shelby Mustangs and Cobras. Miles is most known by his motorsport career in the U.S. and internationally.
According to the story, Ford had been jealous of Ferrari’s racing success and approached Enzo Ferrari in 1963 with a proposal to buy out Ferrari. When Ford made it clear Scuderia Ferrari (Ferrari’s racing program) was part of the deal, Ferrari cut off talks. According to legend, Ferrari turned down $10-million for selling half his company to Ford, prolonging and intensifying the rivalry.
The film features Ford designer Shelby and driver Miles, and their efforts to lead an underdog team of engineers and designers to build the ultimate race car that could inevitably beat Ferrari. The result? The GT40, which starred in the legendary face-off at the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
The race was ultimately won by the Ford team – the first American win in 41 years. Sadly, the glory was short-lived as Miles was killed just two months later, testing the next generation of Ford, the GT Mk.II (that happened to win Le Mans the following year after heavy modifications to correct rear-end lift at race speeds, the issue that caused the crash that took Miles’ life).
The film is expected to provide gripping human drama and exhilarating racing scenes that critics have already applauded for their authenticity without a CGI in sight. The car Damon drove in the film is the same car driven by Shelby and owned by his grandson.