This Original GT40 Roadster Prototype Might Be The Coolest Ford Ever

The GT40 has rightly earned its place in American automotive lore, but the much less-known GT40 roadster is quite possibly infinitely cooler than its race-going cousin. It's the topless race car for the street you probably never knew existed, and one of them is going to be up for sale at RM's Monterrery auction later this summer.

As they were developing the GT40 program ahead of their race debut, Ford built a series of prototypes to test out different components. Most of them were the hard tops you know and love, but two of them were made to be intensely cool roadsters for the street.

Like the race car, they were powered by the famous 289 cid V8, albeit a tuned down version. This view from the intake stacks to the steering wheel basically says everything you need to know about this car. 

Climb inside and it's still all business. The seats are locked into the optimal driving position, and the pedals are mounted on a rail so you can adjust them to your feet.

That's kind of important, because this car is so close to the race version you have to really feather your right foot on the throttle as you shift so you don't hear that awful grinding sound signifying you've blown your shift.

How fast is it? It may technically be a street car, but the one time it was used as a pace car during a race in California, it caused problems because the race cars couldn't keep up.

Kinda makes you wish they'd still do stuff like this today, doesn't it?

Aaron Miller is the Rides editor for Supercompressor, and if he had Bill Gates' money, he'd drive this on the street.