- This Mustang to be auctioned on the Bring a Trailer sitemarks the first chapter in the “Shelby Mustang” saga.
- This 1965 Shelby GT350 flaunts optional Le Mans stripes and custom wheels.
- The dealer’s invoice shows a total cost of $3,888.04 in 1965; Bids are currently at $275,000, with the online auction ending on Thursday, September 15th.
If the first cut is the deepest, then this 1965 Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 is as deep as it gets. LLike many automotive enthusiasts, I considered the Ford Mustang to be an absolute superstar in my childhood, and it was my first favorite car. Of course, by the time I roamed this earth, it was already an American icon, and the Carroll Shelby name was revered by gearheads and fanatics alike.
This specimen, located in Pittsford, New York, is currently being auctioned on the online auction site Bring a Trailer—which, like Car and Driver, is part of Hearst Autos. It was refurbished in California before ending up with its current owner in 2014. It flaunts true Wimbledon White paint with standard rocker panel strips and optional Le Mans stripes. A letter from Howard Pardee, Director Emeritus of the Shelby American Automobile Club, completes its authenticity. Before researching the numbers and pricing conditions, let’s revisit what the first Shelby Mustang was all about.
The Carroll Shelby legacy was well underway when the first Shelby Mustang was launched in 1965. As our testing of the 1965 Shelby GT350 explained, he and his crew began converting the Mustang fastback coupe into a street version. of NASCAR stock cars. Upgrades include a modified 289-cubic-inch V-8 with an output of 306 horsepower and 329 pound-feet of torque, a series of chassis and suspension upgrades — such as Koni adjustable shocks, altered steering geometry, and an anti-roll bar along with a regulating arm. torque—stronger brakes with 11-inch discs at the front and drum at the rear, and 15-inch “mag-type” alloy wheels. Of course, there are other upgrades, including a closer ratio for the four-speed transmission, an optional oil cooler, an extra capacity radiator, and so on.
According to documentation provided by the seller, the original dealer invoice shows a total cost of $3,888.04 in 1965, which includes Le Mans stripes as a no-cost option and “custom alloy” wheels as a $214 option. For reference, the 1965 Shelby GT350 has a base MSRP of $4547. These numbers are a dip compared to the current bid, which is at $275,000 as of this writing. If past auctions are any indicator, bids should continue to increase for this pristine-looking example, like another 1965 Shelby GT350. sold for $400,000 in September 2020, and the Shelby GT350R did it get $875,000 in April 2022. Buying a piece of automotive history can actually be a very expensive feat.
Today, we have the Shelby GT500 which makes a mighty 760 horsepower and can pull as much as 1.13 g on the skidpad. Suffice it to say that the original Mustang GT350 was the starting point of a legacy that automotive enthusiasts cherish today, and are still being written about.
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