Whether you are a die-hard car enthusiast or you enjoy an occasional run on the tracks, the name Shelby is not new to you. The Texas chicken farmer turned race car driver, turned car engineer Carroll Shelby is one of the most popular figures in the motor world.
Besides his achievement on the track even before his dealings with Ford, Shelby had already made a name for himself after daring some of the most dangerous races in the world. Some of the most significant races of his career included The Caddo Mills race, the Sebring race, Le Mans, and the Class D National Speed Records at the Bonneville Salts Flats.
During his racing career, Shelby got the chance to travel the world. He noted in his biography that it was during his travels that he noted how much the American car industry was lacking. It was soon after this that he took it upon himself to create the car that formed what came to be known as the Ford Shelby partnership.
Six years after entering into a deal with Ford, Shelby built one of the most outstanding cars in history, the 1967 Shelby GT500. In this piece, we are going to take a deep dive into the 1967 Shelby GT500 and what makes this car so special.
Let’s take a closer look at the GT500.
The 1967 Shelby GT500
Shelby was never known to shy away from a challenge. As a result, his builds were some of the slyest and undoubtedly some of the most deceptive cars in the market. This is because most of the time, Shelby and his team downplayed their car’s power and capabilities.
The 1967 Shelby GT500 started as a Ford Mustang Fastback. After a touch of Shelby’s magic, this basic Fastback Mustang ended up as a roaring beast fitted with shoulder straps and a roll bar. This car was not only an embodiment of track power, but it also had a touch of luxury and class to it.
This ride was worlds apart from what most people were accustomed to when it came to Shelby’s builds. While it was less brutal and lacked a lot compared to its GT350 counterpart, this car breathed life into the aggressive brand that most people thought represented Shelby.
Design Of The 1967 Shelby GT500
The 1967 Shelby GT500 featured a distinctive design that saw it stand out. The nose of the car featured a revised kit that did away with the chrome grill on the Fastback Mustang. This nose allowed the car to be fitted with scoops.
A pair of closely fitted headlights were added to the car giving it the rally car look that was, at the moment, a popular trend among international rally cars. The fiberglass hood featured an air scoop that was fitted alongside a pair of post-and-peg hold-downs.
Scoops were also fitted to the car’s sides. Two scoops were fitted over the cockpit’s air extractors in the car’s rear area. The others were used to provide fresh air to cool the rear brakes.
For the rear, a ducktail was fitted on the deck’s lid. This was done by using a fiberglass trunk lid. The standard rear fender caps were also replaced with matching upsweep caps. The standard Mustang tail lights were replaced with smaller triplicated lights.
1967 Shelby GT500 interior
Just like the exterior, Shelby significantly altered the Fastback’s interior without losing the feel of the Mustang. He retained the original seats, controls, and panels. However, he replaced the standard seat belts with shoulder straps and added a proper roll bar.
The shoulder straps were attached to the roll bar using an inertia reel. This allowed the car’s occupants to lean forward slowly to adjust the straps. On a quick yank, the straps would lock. On the wooded rim of the steering wheel, Shelby went ahead and added the Shelby emblem giving the interior a finished touch.
While the 1967 Shelby GT500 is officially documented as a four-seater, the back seats were not as useful. They were designed to be foldable. The back seats fold, revealing a beautiful flat rear deck. A small drop-down door in the trunk was added to create more space. This idea was borrowed from the Plymouth Barracuda.
Power train and drive train
Like most Shelby cars, the powertrain was the 1967 Shelby GT500’s greatest talking point. This car was powered by a water-cooled pushrod V8 with cast-iron block and heads. It featured a 2×4-bbl Holley Carburetor. The displacement of this engine was 428 cubic inches, 7016 cc.
This engine was mated with a 3-speed automatic transmission that came with a torque converter. The maximum power capacity from this engine was 350 horsepower at 5,400 rpm and 420 lb-ft of torque at 3,200 rpm. All this power was sent to the car’s rear-wheel-drive drivetrain.
Let us have a look at other significant numbers when it comes to the 1967 Shelby GT500. First, let us look at the dimensions. This car had a wheelbase of 108 inches, a length of 186.6 inches, a width of 70.9 inches, a height of 51.6 inches, and a curb weight of 3370 ls.
On a 0 to 30 mph run, the 1967 Shelby GT500 recorded 2.3 seconds. From 0 to 60 mph run, this car recorded 6.5 seconds, and from 0 to 100 mph, the 1967 Shelby GT500 hit 16.6 seconds. The top speed of this car was recorded at 128 mph, and the braking from 80 to 0 mph was rated at 287ft.
When the 1967 Shelby GT500 debuted, it cost $5,043.60. Today you can get this classic for anywhere between $100,000 to $200,000 depending on the dealership and the car’s condition. In 2017 at the SEMA Show, a 1967 Shelby GT500 sold for $219,000.
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