Shelby American

SHELBY-AMERICAN GETS ITS START
Carroll Shelby formed Shelby-American in 1962 to build fast cars. He dropped Ford’s new small block 289 V8 into an underpowered British sports car, the AC Ace, and created the Shelby AC Cobra. It never sold it big numbers, but it wasn’t meant to. It cemented Shelby’s reputation for building insanely fast, great-handling cars in the minds of the public...and Ford. Next, they shoehorned a 427 Ford V8 under that aluminum hood. The result was the Cobra 427, one of the fastest-accelerating cars on earth at the time, but the heavy big-block weighted down the front axle which hurt handling. But who cared, right?
ABOVE: 1965 AC Cobra 289. Note the lack of side pipes and big fender flares. These were essentially British AC sports cars with a small block Ford V8 and 4-speed tranny dropped it. Only the most minimal strengthening was done.
BELOW:1967 AC Cobra 427. A totally re-engineered car, the Cobra 427 featured an all new tube chassis, racing suspension, and a monsterous Ford 427 big block under the hood. Everything was beefed up to accommodate the added power and weight. While very fast in straight-line acceleration, the heavy big block up front degraded the precision handling of the Cobra 289. Cobra 427s have big fender flares and side pipes.
ABOVE: 1965 Ford Mustang Cobra GT350. Carroll Shelby was soon working for Ford on it's production Mustangs. Called the GT350 because its Hi-Po 289 was supposed to produce 350hp, these cars were shipped partially assembled to Shelby's makeshift assembly shop in the LA International Airport, where his crew built them into Shelby Mustangs.

SHELBY-AMERICAN BUILDING HOT MUSTANGS
Before long, Shelby was building souped-up Mustangs for Ford. Starting in 1965, Ford sent partially-assembled Mustangs to Shelby’s shop at LAX (Los Angeles International Airport), where he did his magic. The result was the GT350 271hp 289 was coaxed up to 306hp, it got a heavy duty tranny and posi-traction rear axle, along with enhanced handling and braking hardware. The result was nothing short of stupendous. But they were hand-built, which made them expensive, and prevented them from being built in volume. Only 562 cars were built in 1965. By 1967, Shelby was putting 428CJs in creating the GT500 and GT500KR. Ford took over production in 1968 and began building them completely in their own factories. They continued to use the Shelby name under license and Shelby did some consulting work.
ABOVE: 1967 Ford Mustang Cobra GT350. '67 was the last year that Carroll Shelby actually laid hands on the Shelby Mustangs Fastback. By '68, there were being built completely by Ford under license to use the Shelby name.
BELOW: 1968 Ford Mustang CobraJet 428 Convertible. The first Ford-built Shelby Mustangs could be convertibles for the first time. This one has the massive and heavy 428CJ engine, making one of the quickest cars at the time.
SHELBY-AMERICAN IN MODERN TIMES
Shelby parted ways with Ford by the early 70s. We his name next appeared on new cars, they were Chrysler Products this time, as Ol' Shel worked is magic on their tired line of K-car derivatives. He turbocharged them, juiced up the looks and the handling and helped revive Chrysler when they needed it most. His next post was at Oldsmobile where he designed a whole new car for them, the Shelby Series 1 from 1998-2005. It didn't sell too well. Then it was back to Ford, doing what he did best: hot rodding new Mustangs. Carroll Shelby, the man, died in 2012, but his company, and his legend live on. They're still in Las Vegas NV, building about 50 Continuation Cobras per year, along with working on and/or modifying another 450 customer cars each year. You can visit the Shelby Factory in Las Vegas, we did it, and it's cool. And it's free! Check out our page on the SHELBY MUSEUM.
BELOW: This is the kind of stuff Shelby-American is building today. This is a brand new Shelby GT500 Super Snake. This one has 750 horsepower. They're working on a 1,000-hp version now.

VISIT THE SHELBY MUSEUM
in Las Vegas NV


It's not really a museum. It's actually the shop where Shelby builds Continuation Cobras & wicked Mustangs, and you can tour it for free! No kidding! Great gift shop too. You've gotta' see this!


Shelby Mustangs YEAR-BY-YEAR


1965 COBRA 427SC
The ultimate American muscle car, lightweight sports car body, massive Ford 427 V8. This one's a replica, but fairly authentic to the roughly 1,100 real ones that were made.


1965 GT350

The first of the Shelby Mustangs, it came with a Shelby-ized Hi-Po 289 and 4-speed manual, but the focus was on the suspension. All were fastbacks.



1967 GT350

The last Shelby Mustangs actually built my Carroll Shelby. By '68, Ford was building them on the line with civilian Mustangs.



1967 GT500

The last Shelby Mustangs actually built my Carroll Shelby. The GT500 swapped the GT350's small block for a 428 Cobra Jet big block V8.



1968 GT500KR


The monstrous 428 CobraJet big block under the elongated hood earned the GT500KR the nickname "King of the Hill".



1970 GT350


Shelby walked away in '69 & no '70 Shelby Mustangs were built. '70s were built in '69 & reissued. The GT350 now had the 351 V8.



2006 Ford Shelby GT-H


Only 500 were built to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the original GT350H with appearance package & 25hp bump.



2007 Ford Shelby GT


A limited run of 6,000 were built, more or less to the same specs as the GT-H, without Hertz gold trim. Available in '07 & '08 only, in white or black with silver stripe.



2008 GT500 Super Snake


Shelby in name only, Ford stuffed in a 540hp supercharged 5.4L V8 & let 'er rip!!



2016 Shelby GT350


The 5.2L Voodoo V8 cranks out 526hp at a lofty 7500 rpm, thanks to its flat-plane crank. All new 6th-gen platform.


FORD ENGINES
From the Flathead to the new Voodoo, pictures, specs, history & more on Ford's many V8 engine families

Check out these SHELBY BOOKS





Shelby American Up Close and Behind the Scenes: The Venice Years 1962-1965



Inside Shelby American: Wrenching and Racing with Carroll Shelby in the 1960s



Shelby American World Registry



Shelby Cobra Fifty Years



Inside Shelby American: Wrenching and Racing with Carroll Shelby in the 1960s



Shelby Cobra: The Snake that Conquered the World



Shelby Cobra: The Shelby American Original Color Archives 1962-1965



Shelby Mustang Fifty Years



Shelby American Racing History by Dave Friedman (1997-11-01)



The Complete Book of American Muscle Supercars: Yenko, Shelby, Baldwin Motion, Grand Spaulding, and More





Auto Parts Warehouse

PLEASE LOOK AROUND AMERICAN-MUSCLE-CARS.NET:

HOME PAGE
ABOUT US
CONTACT US
SITE MAP
CLASSIC CAR SHOWS
CLASSIC CAR MUSEUMS
CLASSIC CAR AUCTIONS
CLASSIC CAR DEALERS

AMERICAN MUSCLE CARS:

GENERAL MOTORS
.....CHEVROLET
...............Camaro
...............Chevelle SS
...............El Camino SS
...............Corvette
...............Impala SS
...............Nova
...............Tri-Five Chevy (1955-1957)
..........Nomad (1955-1957)
...............Chevy Small Block V8
...............Chevy Big Block V8
.....PONTIAC
...............Firebird
...............Trans Am
...............GTO
.....OLDSMOBILE
...............Olds 442
.....BUICK
...............Skylark GS/Grand Sport
...............Grand National/GNX
FORD MOTOR COMPANY / FOMOCO
.....FORD
...............Mustang
...............Fairlane
...............Torino
...............Ford Engines
.....SHELBY-AMERICAN
MOPAR/CHRYSLER PRODUCTS
.....DODGE
...............Challenger
...............Charger
...............Coronet
...............Super Bee
...............Viper
.....PLYMOUTH
...............Barracuda
...............Duster
...............Roadrunner
...............GTX
...............Superbird
AMERICAN MOTORS / AMC
..........Javelin/AMX
MODERN MUSCLE CARS, 2000 and newer
MUSCLE CAR ENGINES

STORES:

.....Car Books
....Car Magazines
.....Car Calendars

CONTACT US


Do you like Classic British Motorcycles? Check out our sister site at:

www.Classic-British-Motorcycles.com



MORE TO COME FROM AMERICAN-MUSCLE-CARS.NET
WE’RE JUST GETTING STARTED

We are growing as fast as we can, gathering and taking eye-popping photos of awesome Classic American Muscle Cars, doing research on specifications and history, and writing content. We all love these great cars, so it’s not like work, in fact, it’s a blast. But it does take time. If you see that we’re lacking in some area, we just don’t have the photos and/or content yet to finish. Give us some time and as we get more eye-popping photos, we will continue to flesh out the site. Join us as we grow, but please be patient with that growth.

PS: Special thanks go out to Specialty Sales (www.SpecialtySales.com) for the hundreds of eye-popping pictures they've allowed us to use. Specialty has 4 classic car showrooms in the San Francisco Bay Area full of gorgeous classics. We'd also like to thank The Goodguys (www.good-guys.com) for putting on some of the best car shows around, and allowing me to take all these great pictures. Thanks again to you both.


Back to top - Shelby American
Last updated 8/9/17

Auto Parts Warehouse

Learn how to build your own WEBSITE, like I did.


HOT AUGUST NIGHTS 2017
just ended.
We got the VIDEO!

DAY 1:
Peppermill Cruise-
* LARGE FORMAT FOR LAPTOPS
* FOR MOBILE DEVICES

DAY 2:
Peppermill Show-
LARGE FORMAT FOR LAPTOPS
* FOR MOBILE DEVICES
DAY 3:
Atlantis Show-
LARGE FORMAT FOR LAPTOPS
* FOR MOBILE DEVICES
Grand Sierra Show-
* LARGE FORMAT FOR LAPTOPS
* FOR MOBILE DEVICES
Johnny Rivers Live-
* LARGE FORMAT FOR LAPTOPS
* FOR MOBILE DEVICES

DAY 4:
MAG Car Auction-
* LARGE FORMAT FOR LAPTOPS
* FOR MOBILE DEVICES
Reno Cruise Night-
* LARGE FORMAT FOR LAPTOPS
* FOR MOBILE DEVICES
DAY 5:
Downtown Reno Show-
* LARGE FORMAT FOR LAPTOPS
* FOR MOBILE DEVICES
The Last Cruise-
* LARGE FORMAT FOR LAPTOPS
* FOR MOBILE DEVICES


AS SEEN ON TV: THE
AIR DRAGON


Air Dragon Portable Air Compressor, Extra-Long 14-Foot Power Cable, Easy-To-Read Digital Pressure Gauge

NEW SECTION:

MUSCLE CAR ENGINES


The 2017 Car Calenders are here! ORDER NOW


Check out our new VIDEO PAGE


Please visit our new YouTube Channel



Online
BOOK STORE
for Car Nuts



Get your
CAR MAGAZINES
here




DIECAST MUSCLE CARS


NEW PAGES
BUILT THIS MONTH

2003 Chevy Corvette Z06
2002 Ford Thunderbird
1972 Olds Cutlass Convertible
1956 Ford Skyliner
1970 AMC AMX
Mercury Cougar
1967 Mercury Cougar
1968 Mercury Cougar
1969 Mercury Cougar
1970 Mercury Cougar
Buick Riviera
1963 Buick Riviera
1964 Buick Riviera
1967 Buick Riviera
1972 Buick Riviera
1974 Chevy El Camino
1958 Ford Fairlane
1967 Ford Galaxie Cop Car
1972 Pontiac GTO Convertible
Cop Cars
1965 Ford Galaxie Cop Car
1968 Dodge Coronet Cop Car
1955 Ford Thunderbird
1961 Ford Thunderbird
1960 Ford Thunderbird
1959 Ford Thunderbird
1972 Buick GS455 Stage 1
1965 Shelby Cobra 427SC
Ford Thunderbird
1957 Ford Thunderbird
1963 Ford Thunderbird
1964 Ford Thunderbird
1965 Ford Thunderbird
1966 Ford Thunderbird
Ford Galaxie
1962 Ford Galaxie
1963 Ford Galaxie
1966 Ford Galaxie
1964 Ford Galaxie
Ford Torino
1969 Ford Torino Cobra
1969 Ford Torino GT
1971 Ford Torino GT
More new pages coming all the time...
Keep checking back!