Many fans may not realise it, but the Ford’s evergreen Mustang was named after the famous World War II fighter plane. The story goes that one of the designers on the Ford project was quite a fan of the famous P51 aircraft and suggested the name to his bosses, which was adopted; and the rest is history.

A fitting tribute

Ford and world champion drifter Vaughn Gittin Jr. are paying tribute to American fighter pilots who served in the Royal Air Force. Gittin will drive a one-off Eagle Squadron Mustang GT at this year’s Goodwood Festival of Speed on July 12.

The car was created by Ford Performance in conjunction with Gittin’s RTR Vehicles company, which is know for its high-performance products. It features a fighter aircraft-inspired paint scheme over a RTR carbon-fibre wide-body. The Eagle Squadron Mustang GT is powered by a 5,0-litre V8 with a Ford Performance supercharger bolted on to pump up power to over 520 kW.

Catch Gittin Jr drifting a Ford pick-up around the Nurburgring in this video.

Auctioned for a good cause

After its debut at Goodwood the car will be sent to the U.S. for the Experimental Aircraft Association’s largest fundraiser, The Gathering, held on July 26. There, the Eagle Squadron Mustang GT will be auctioned off to support the EAA’s youth education programs.

“Supporting young pilots through the EAA charity auction reflects Ford’s aviation history, tracing back to the company’s early days and the Arsenal of Democracy during WWII,” said Darrell Behmer, Ford Mustang design chief. “The Eagle Squadron Mustang GT build with Vaughn and the Ford design team is a great way to honor our heroes and keep the spirit of aviation alive for the next generation of American pilots.”

To see the full car in action you’ll have to tune into the Goodwood YouTube channel on July 12.