What is a GT Car and What Does “GT” Mean?

GT: Different Vehicles, Same Designation

Have you ever noticed how some cars are designated as a “GT” model? For example, there are Mustang GTs, Alfa Romeo GTs, Ferrari GTs, and Pontiac GTs, to name a few.

What does GT mean?

Giant Turtle? Greasy Tailpipe?

Nope, “GT” simply means “Grand Touring” or “Gran Turismo.” In Italian, the term “Gran Turismo” refers to cars that can make long-distance “Grand Tours” in comfort and style. Many modern GTs have body kits, like ground effects or spoilers, or even an extra set of headlights that did not come from the factory on the base model.

While most cars designated with a GT are considered high performance vehicles, GT models often come with extra comfort features, such as softer suspensions or leather seats. Also, GT models are typically larger and heavier than regular sports cars, and also emphasize comfort as well as performance.

History of the GT

The original GT cars were produced in the early 20th century by manufacturers like Alfa Romeo, Ferrari and Lancia. GT’s immediately gained popularity in both North America and Europe.

With the “horseless carriage’s” invention at the end of the 19th century, peoples’ lifestyles were changing: for the first time, they could travel long distances for the purpose of nothing more than leisure or adventure. The design of the auto changed accordingly during this time period, becoming much more attuned to luxury and comfort, not just utility.

Many different versions of the GT have been made, such as the “GTO” (Gran Turismo Omologato) and “GTS” (which may mean Gran Turismo Spider, Sport, or Special).

Gotta GT? Tell Us About It...

What kind of GT do you have (or want)? Tell us in the comments section below and feel free to share a link to a picture of your GT!

Also, if we can help you protect your GT with a high quality, American-made car cover, seat cover or other car accessories, you can save 10% if you mention this blog post when you call in your order at 1-866-818-9901.



  1. MERWYN T. MELVIN II September 17, 2013 Reply

    What is the GT you have displayed above, OMG! That is a beautiful car, & I thought I had seen all of the classic Ferraris, Lamborghinis, & Maseratis, ever built…..Mel Melvin

    • Jessica December 3, 2013 Reply

      Thanks Merwyn! Glad you like it!

  2. m z March 28, 2014 Reply

    alfa romeo gtv6 1982 manual gear , oh how i loved this car

  3. Leo Bechard July 21, 2014 Reply

    I have just completed a project to enhance a stock 2014 Ford Mustang GT into a GT Plus. My concept was to enhance each of the vehicles systems to produce author Sam Dawson’s definition of a GT which is, “The ideal is of a car with the ability to cross a continent at speed and in comfort yet provide driving thrills when demanded”. Style (style bar, chrome wheels, billet grill), acceleration (supercharger, 3.73:1 gear ratio, updated fuel system, cat-back exhaust, colder plugs, custom dyno tune, short shifter), braking (4 piston calipers, vented rotors), handling (tuned springs/shocks/struts), stealth (premium radar detector, laser jammer), and comfort (wind screen, electronics package). The result is an exceptional Grand Touring car. I am extremely pleased with the result.

  4. Jim Martin October 7, 2014 Reply

    Just picked up a 2003 Pontiac Vibe GT. Looking forward to many years of enjoying this GT!

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