Why the Movie 'Ford v. Ferrari' Attracted a Line of New Mustangs Friday Night
SAN ANGELO, TX — The movie Ford v Ferrari debuted in San Angelo Friday night at the Icon Cinemas and it attracted an uncommon audience. Jim Bass Cars and Trucks, the largest Ford car dealership in the region, shut down early so every employee there could attend the 8 p.m. showing. Some of the Bass Bunch, as they are known, drove 2019 Ford Mustangs to the movie.
Ford v Ferrari is a story about the iconic titans of Ford in a booming Detroit auto industry, Henry Ford II, Lee Iacocca, and Carroll Shelby. The movie tells the story of how they avenged Enzo Ferrari for breaking an agreed deal for Ford to purchase Ferrari’s car company in the early 1960s. The egotistical Ferrari built his reputation on winning high profile races like the 24 Hours of Le Mans in France. It was there that Henry II plotted his revenge.
Henry Ford II, known as “The Deuce”, spent every bit of the $10 million he originally offered Ferrari in the declined purchase agreement to build a racing team that would eventually defeat Ferrari at Le Mans. Popular Mechanics said that the design of what was to become America’s best racecar, the Ford GT40 Mark II, came down to brake design. After two years of failure, the Ford team eventually won the 1966 Le Mans.
Ford v. Ferrari stars Matt Damon and Christian Bale. Shelby Is played by Damon and British racing driver Ken Miles is played by Bale. The movie plot follows the two as they battle corporate interference at Ford to build a car and racing team that eventually won the Le Mans in 1966.
Watch the trailer:
The Ford GT40 Mark II was never offered as a production car, but the Ford v Ferrari experience at Ford gave birth to a half century of sports cars starting with upgraded versions of the Ford Mustang. In 2005, Ford introduced a limited run of the Ford GT (minus the “40”) that featured a 550-horsepower V-8. The car listed for $150,000 when it was introduced in 2005. Today, a 2005 Ford GT will fetch over $200,000. The limited production ended in 2006. In 2017, Ford again presented a “reborn” Ford GT with the signature Ford 3.5-liter V-6 with Ecoboost that pushed the car to 647 horsepower. Only 45 were built.
Jim Bass’s General Manager Todd Price said Ford will release the 2020 Mustang Shelby GT500 in 2020. The $72,900 MSRP car will run with a 760-horsepower engine, according to Ford marketing literature. Price said he expects his San Angelo dealership will have just one to sell next year.
The Ford Mustang is a popular car in the region, Price said. “They sell really well around graduation time,” he said. Priced from the mid-$20,000s for a basic model, they make affordable cars for kids as graduation presents. The Mustang is also popular with empty nesters. “Sure it has a back seat, but when you’re hauling kids around, it’s not the most user-friendly car for that,” Price said. But when the kids are out of the house, Price said the Mustang is the car with the styling and handling performance that will make up for the years of sacrifices to raise the kids. The Mustang is very popular in the San Angelo region. There is a Mustang club in San Angelo that holds car shows, sometimes on the lot at Jim Bass.
Friday night, a line of brand new Mustangs drove to Icon Cinemas with employees of Jim Bass behind to see the movie celebrating Ford Motor Company’s contribution to American history. Owner John Bass paid for the tickets and all the snacks from the concessions counters for employees.
“I think it’s really cool how the Bass’s take care of their employees,” Price said.
The movie has excellent reviews: an 8.2 out of 10 on IMDb; 92 percent approval at Rotten Tomatoes; and a 79 percent rating at Media Critic. There are seven showings today at Cinemark Tinseltown on Sherwood Way and 12 showings at Icon Cinemas on N. Bryant.
Recommended for You
Get more stories like this by signing up for our daily newsletter, The LIVE! Daily.