There is a strange video that appeared on YouTube a few days ago. It lasts almost two and a half minutes, during which we see what looks like a stripped-down Ford Mustang Mach-E. By that, we mean it’s missing body panels and glass, and oh yes, it was struggling like a new gymkhana audition for a role in the next Ken Block video. What’s going on here in the blue hell?
Before we even try to answer this question, we can’t help but feel a little suspicious about it all. This clip is titled Secret electric vehicle testin [sic] and it’s the only video on what appears to be a brand new YouTube account called Carolina Guy. The view of the camera has more tremors and awkward movements than a Blair Witch suite, and yet this car stops as if by magic so as to give the intrepid videographer a crystal clear picture of the car. How practical.
In fact, just about everything in this video – from the shaky camera to the very thin “cover” and sudden exodus after apparently being discovered, our BS counter is on high alert. If it is not a fully staged video, we will eat our shorts, and judging by the few YouTube comments on the clip, we are not the only ones to feel that. However, this is where things get interesting. Is it important that this is staged or not?
Thanks to a speaker, we know that this Mach-E video was taken at the North Carolina Center for Automotive Research (NCCAR) and this is also confirmed by Jalopnik. It’s not exactly skunkworks, but the area is secure and various car companies occasionally use the facilities. The car certainly looks real, and Ford must be involved in one way or another, because the Mach-E is not yet in production. Again, what’s going on here in the blue hell?
In the absence of an official statement, we must speculate. The actions seen here are certainly very gymnastic, and Ken Block certainly has a close relationship with Ford. In addition, Ford let Block publish a detailed video of him testing a Mach-E prototype when the car was launched. It could well be a viral video planned from either side to promote a new gymkhana business featuring Mach-E. Yes, Block has ceded the franchise to Pastrana for the next big parade, but that doesn’t mean that a Bonkers Mach-E couldn’t make an appearance.
Likewise, a staged viral clip looks like something that doesn’t come from Ford itself, but from a company close to Ford like Shelby or RTR. Both build modified Mustangs, and while it’s a five-door EV crossover, it Is wear Mustang badges. Maybe we are looking for a prototype of Shelby Mach-E? Or maybe Ford Performance is working with a test mule to see what types of upgrades might interest buyers? Besides, a “leak” of such a video could generate a little hype for the standard Mach-E, which will not be on sale before the fall.
If you have interesting theories to add – or if you are a fair insider dying to spill the grain on the project – speak now or wait for the next spy video to arrive.