Ford Executive Chairman Bill Ford and CEO Mark Fields posed with the new GT sports car shortly after it was revealed in Detroit last week. Ford plans to put the GT into very limited production starting late next year. Source: Ford Motor Company.

Ford (NYSE:F) wowed the crowds last week with its eye-popping GT sports car, the surprise hit of the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

We were on hand when it was first revealed, and we can tell you that it was an absolute showstopper: The normally jaded media audience swarmed the car, and the crowds were thick around it all through the two-day media preview.

The Ford GT is powered by a super-hot version of Ford's 3.5-liter twin-turbo EcoBoost V6. That engine makes 365 horsepower in mainstream models like Ford's Explorer, but for duty in the GT it has been given a big boost: Ford says it'll make over 600 horsepower, though the company hasn't yet released specifics.

In fact, a lot of specifics on the new GT were lacking. We know that Ford plans to build the car starting late next year, that the total production run will be tiny (we heard 300 cars), and that the price will be high. We don't know how high, but six figures for sure, and the first number may not be a "1." (And it's safe to say that the dealer markups on this one will be absolutely huge.)

But why would Ford choose to build such a car -- and then limit it to such a tiny number of copies? In part, it's because Ford likely has plans to race a version of the new GT -- though the company hasn't yet announced any official plans along those lines. But as CEO Mark Fields told us, the new GT -- which is built largely from carbon fiber and aluminum, using advanced techniques -- is a symbol of Ford's emphasis on "innovation," the theme of its display at the Detroit show and an important theme for the company's efforts going forward.

We caught up with Fields on Ford's show stand in Detroit and asked him about the GT. In the short video below, you can hear what he told us -- including a great little story about how the GT was developed by a team working secretly in a basement storage room. Check it out, and then scroll down to leave a comment with your thoughts on Ford's new exotic sports car.