Image credits: © Shelby.

1965 Shelby Mustang GT350 news, pictures, specifications, and information
The Shelby GT350, a high-powered performance version of the 1964 1/2 and 1965 Mustang, was created to qualify for SCCA/B production competition, by a process called 'homologation.' Shelby American produced 100 cars by February 1965, thus enabling the vehicles to compete in the 1965 season. There were only 522 cars to roll out of Carroll Shelby's Venice, California plant.

In 1965, Shelby American injected its Cobra 'DNA' into the Mustang to create the ultimate Pony car. The most exciting version was the 1965 GT 350R, which captured the SCCA's B/Production class road racing championship for three straight years, to celebrate the birth of the GT350, Carroll Shelby and unique performance created a limited edition 40th Anniversary GT350SR that is more powerful than the 1965 427 Shelby Cobra. Only 40 will be built, making them among the most desirable collectibles in the world. This car is serial #01 of 40. Every car is numbered and receives a special Shelby serial plate for documentation in the Shelby American Automobile Club Registry. The all-aluminum, 427 cubic-inch small block Shelby engine is rated at 585 HP. It has 40th Anniversary edition exterior badging, independent front and adjustable rear suspension, Tremec 5-speed transmission, custom ble interior with 40th Anniversary Edition logos, Baer 4-wheel disc brakes. Pure muscle, and pure shelby, this 'Snake Bit' Pony is the ultimate collectible thrill ride. Serial #1 of 40.
Chassis Num: SFM5R002
GT350 SFM5R002 was the first Shelby Mustang competition car built by Shelby American. It is the engineering GT350 on which parts were tested for all competition GT350s built by Shelby American. It was featured in the movie 'Shelby Goes Racing with Ford.' At the end of 1965 Shelby American added VIN numbers to its two completed GT350s at random, which is why the first car ended up with the second VIN number. It was used for testing for all the competition GT350s by Ken Miles, Jerry Titus, Peter Brock, Chuck Cantwell and Bob Bondurant. During 1965 and 1966 it was campaigned by the Shelby American team with 16 starts and 12 first place victories. It was sold in 1966 to Ford Engineer Bill Clawson who successfully raced it in 1966 and 1967. Clawson sold the car to Russell Fish who won 18 out of 21 races entered in 1968 and 1969. Finally, it was sold to Luis Blanq-Cacaux who successfully raced in Mexico for two years then parked it in an open shed in the desert. The car was found and brought back to this country in 1989 and displayed in the Shelby American Collection museum for several years. Recently, 5R002 was immaculately restored to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Ford Mustang and captured Best in Class Honors at the 2014 Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance.
Chassis Num: SFM5S003
This is one of three high performance 'HiPo' 289 Mustangs used to start the GT350 Mustang project at Shelby American in late October 1964 and was the prototype used to determine which modification and part sources were needed to produce the GT350 Mustang for 1965. Since it did not require as much development and construction time as the racing version it is accepted this is the first Shelby Mustang produced. Shelby American employee (the head of Shelby's special projects), Peter Brock, took photos of this partially finished car and wrote the text for what would become the first two ads used in the automotive magazine in early 1965. It was cleverly photographed with standard steel wheels on the driver's side and Shelby-Cragar chromed alloys on the passenger side to give the illusion that more than one street GT350 had been built. It was used at Shelby American for six months before being converted to a current production GT350 and sold to its first public owner (Cobra team driver Ed Leslie, for his dealership in Monterey, California) in the summer of 1965. In late 1979 it was thought to have been a competition version of the GT350 and was restored as an R model. The 003 was restored back to its early prototype design. The work was performed over a 12 year period using many rare and original parts. It has had ten owners over the last 50 years.
This Mustang was the 19th GT350 created and was purchased by Hayward Ford to race Seca Class B Production in March of 1965. It was first raced at Laguna Seca in May, coming ninth overall in the GT race driven by Dick Carter, and was also the first GT350 raced on the West Coast. It was Seca Regional BP Champion in 1965. During the 1980s and 1990s, it was vintage raced with much success. Currently, it has only 12,000 original miles on its odometer.
By Daniel Vaughan | Aug 2010
Chassis Num: 5S048
This Shelby was one of the very first GT 350's to race. It was actually the 24th GT 350 shipped from Shelby American to their dealer network. It raced numerous times from 1965 to 1969 in the northwest region of the SCCA. The 1965 GT 350's proved their speed superiority by winning the 'B' production championships in 1965, 1966 & 1967. The almost original condition of this car should be appreciated. The interior of this car is unchanged from the 1960's and the paint is almost totally original. This is one of a few, if not the only, early GT350 race car that has not been totally restored.
Chassis Num: 5F09C294180
Sold for $25,300 at 2006 RM Auctions.
This car was one of the first 150 Shelby made. After its 'R' spec conversion, the car was raced at several famous venues in the United States. It then remained stored until Sir Stirling Moss purchased it and eventually raced it at as many events as he could, traveling worldwide with the car to each venue. The current owner purchased it in 2004 and has since campaigned at various automobile gatherings.
Chassis Num: SFM5S041
Sold for $297,000 at 2006 Russo & Steele.
Due to a heart defect, Carroll Shelby retired from racing in the late 1950's. One of his greatest racing accomplishments was winning the 24 Hours of LeMans in 1958 in an Aston martin. After his departure from racing he used his reputation to form the Carol Shelby High Performance Driving School. Later, he worked out a deal with Ford to place potent V8 engines into British cars. The result was the Shelby Cobra and Daytona. The Cobra cars would go on to win the GT class at LeMans, a testament to their capabilities. When Ford introduced their Mustang in 1964, Shelby was there to make it even better. His formula included larger engines into small, lightweight vehicles and the Mustang was an excellent candidate. The Shelby GT350 was introduced in 1965 with the GT500 following a year later.

SCCA Homologation rules stated that at least 100 'street versions' had to be produced in order for a car to qualify for racing. The result were the Shelby GT350 that was a barely street legal vehicle. The suspension was stiff and the engine potent.

This 1965 Shelby Mustang GT350 Fastback finished in Wimbledon White with two Guardsman Blue racing stripes running the entire length of the vehicle was offered for sale at the 2006 Worldwide Group Auction on Hilton Head Island. It was expected to sell between $350,000-$400,000. This high price tag was due to its low production number. It was one of the first 100 vehicles delivered to Shelby's Venice, California facility. It bares chassis number 41 and is believed to be one of the oldest surviving Shelby Mustang in existence. It retains its original all-fiberglass hood with round hole and correct wire mesh, 289 Hi-Po K-Code motor. The Borg Warner T-10 transmission with aluminum housing is also original. At the conclusion of the sale, this vehicle was left unsold.

By Daniel Vaughan | Nov 2006
Chassis Num: SFM5010
Sold for $528,000 at 2007 RM Auctions.
Sold for $418,000 at 2010 Gooding & Company.
The Shelby Mustang was first shown on January 27th of 1965. The car was available only in Wimbledon White with a blue GT350 side stripe located below the door. The Shelby Mustang had a fiberglass hood with a functional hood scoop, and a tri-colored running horse located on the drivers side of the grille. LeMans stripes running down the center of the body was available as a dealer option. The interior featured competition seat belts, wood-rimmed three-spoke steering wheel, special instrument cluster, and black-only interior.

Under the fiberglass hood was a Hi-Po 289 engine that boosted horsepower from 271 to 306. There was only one gearbox offered, a Borg-Warner special aluminum T-10 four-speed manual, with a 9-inch Detroit differential. To provide better weight distribution, the battery was located in the trunk. The suspension was given considerable attention; there was a large front stabilizer bar, lowered upper 'A' frames, Koni shocks and traction bars.

The Shelby Mustang GT350 carried a base price of $4,547.00. To back up this price tag, his team cars dominated the SCCA 'B' Production class with Jerry Titus leading the way and winning the National Championship.

This 1965 Shelby Mustang GT350 'Supercharged' is a factory prototype which was delivered to Shelby America on December 18th of 1964. It is the only 1965 Shelby Mustang GT350 prototype to be fitted with a Paxton/McCulloch supercharger. This was offered as an option in 1966. The cxar is equppied with Thunderbird tail lamps, which was done for show purposes. Other unique features include hand painted side stripes and GT350 logos, 16-inch Cobra-type steering wheel, white painted ram air plenum hood, and stainless-steel braided oil pressure lines.

Work was completed on this car in January 25th of 1965. Its first owner was J.B. Hunter of Costa Mesa, CA who purchased the car on October 26th of 1965. In 1974, the second owner took posession. The car was kept in the second owners cars until 1988, when it was sold to its third owner.

This car was offered for sale at the 2007 RM Auctions held in Amelia Island, Florida where it was estimated to sell between $500,000 - $600,000. At auction, the car was sold for $528,000.

By Daniel Vaughan | Apr 2007
1965 was the first year for Carroll Shelby designed Mustang - one of just 500 produced. This example was received by Shelby American on June 13, 1965 and work was finished on June 25, 1965. The automobile was shipped on July 23, 1965, to Dick Wallas Ford, Inc.

January 1965 - The 1965 GT350 debuts.

February 1965 - The Shelby Mustang GT350 also wins its first race, at Green Valley, Texas.

March 1965 - Production of the GT350 moves to Shelby-American Los Angeles International Airport facility after the first 250 cars are completed.
This GT350 Mustang was shipped to S&C Motors in San Francisco in June of 1965 and was purchased by its first owner residing in Sausalito, CA. A year later it was purchased by a resident in San Bruno, California, who owned it from 1966 through 2005. A resident of Concord, Massachusetts became the car's next owner, and entered it in the 2005 SAAC Annual Convention held in 2005 at the California Speedway. It was awarded the Chairman's Award in Division III 'Original Unrestored Cars' at the concours of that event. Shortly after the convention, the current owners acquired it and returned it home to California. Its current mileage is 36,300 miles and still retains the original California black license plates as delivered in 1965.
By Daniel Vaughan | Aug 2010

1965 GT 350 #SFM5S 159

Like most 1965 GT350's, 5S159 was originally produced as one of only 525 street model Shelby Mustangs. It was converted to a race prepared car in 1978 by Donald G. Cummings of Ormond Beach, FL. Its first race was the Paul Revere 250 at Daytona, driven by Donald Cummings and Guido Lefvetto. It finished 28'th place. The Paul Revere race was used as a test bed in preparation for the legendard endurance race in Daytona Beach.

In 1980, Cummings and Levetto drove 5S159 at the 24 Hours of Daytona and finished in 28'th place. The car was raced under sponsorship of 'The Cummings Marque Inc.', named for the body shop owned by Donald Cummings. By placing 28'th, 5S159 became only the second Shelby Mustang to finish the 24-Hour of Daytona. The other car was also owned and campaigned by Donald Cummings.

At the 1982 SCCA Nationals at Sebring FL, Cummings finished 3'rd in GT-1, driving 5S159.

Driven as a rental by Greg Walker, 5S159 won the 1983 Ford Cup Championship.

The car was subsequently rented to Al Witham and raced extensively in 1984 and 1985.

Purchased by Steve Prewitt in 1989 or 1990, 5S159 was painted red, white, and blue and was raced at many SVRA events until being sold to Howard Harris in 1996.

Howard Harris had 5S159 painted to its current configuration and raced it extensively at many SVRA events until it was sold to Mike Cavanaugh of Cincinnati, OH in 2005.
Chassis Num: SMF5S472
Sold for $170,000 at 2013 RM Auctions.
There were just 562 Shelby GT350s produced in 1965. The 289-cubic inch solid lifter 'Hi-Po' V-8 was upped from 271 to 306 horsepower. The factory hood of the Ford Mustang was replaced with a lightweight unit, and the rear seats were cleverly removed so the car qualified as a two-seat sports car for SCCA competition.

SMF5S472 was sold new at the Marshall Motor Company in Mayfield Height, Ohio on October 22nd, 1965, for $3,617.25. Its original owner was Dr. Paul F. Boyd, of Lyndhurst, Ohio. The current owner acquired the car in 2004.

From the factory, this car did not wear the dark blue Shelby stripes over the Wimbledon White hood, roof, and trunk, as did most of the production run. The car has since been repainted. It is equipped with its original interior with a proper wood-rimmed steering wheel, and the 'Cyclops eye' tachometer mounted on the dashboard. The engine has been overhauled and since that time, has seen approximately 300 miles. Currently, the odometer shows approximately 44,000 miles.

In 2013, this car was offered for sale at RM Auctions Scottsdale, Arizona sale. As bidding came to a close, the car had been sold for the sum of $170,000 inclusive of buyer's premium.

By Daniel Vaughan | Feb 2013
Chassis Num: SFM 5S431
This Shelby GT350 is one of 525 sold in 1965. It was originally sold from Hi-Performance Motors of Los Angles, California. The odometer shows 18,000 original miles and it hasn't been driven since 1972. It is all numbers matching with original Koni shock absorbers and Blue-Dot spare tire. The sunvisor has been autographed by Carroll Shelby. It has been restored to original factory specifications.
Chassis Num: 5r100
This is one of the few original 1965 GT 350 'R' models ever produced by Shelby American. This particular 'R' model was sponsored by Dockery Ford of Morristown, N.J. for the 1966 season. As a finished car, the owners wanted it to be exactly the way they remembered it racing and for it to be capable of winning Concours judged events.

Upon completion of the restoration, the first event the car attended was the 2006 Shelby American Automobile Club 31st convention. It took part in the Concours judging and was awarded 'Premiere' in Division 1 — Stock original/NOS cars only. In 2011, 5r100 would receive a perfect 900 out of 900 at the SAAC-36, the first time in Shelby Club history a car has received a perfect score.
Chassis Num: SFM 5S425
Sold for $572,000 at 2014 RM Auctions.
Most of the Shelby GT350 models are the same. A few production examples were delivered with the Shelby-Cragar five-spoke mag wheels, while others rode on hubcap-less steel wheels. Most had stripes on the hood and rear deck, while all had manual transmissions and naturally aspired, 306 horsepower, 289 cubic-inch V8 engines.

Wanting to prove the car's potential, Joseph Granatelli returned to Shelby American's facility with a supercharged GT350, chassis 5010, and challenged Carroll Shelby to a drag race. Granatelli was to drive the Mustang while Shelby was to drive a much-lighter 289 Cobra. The supercharged GT350 not only left the Cobra in the dust, but also left Mr. Shelby very impressed. Shelby then placed an order for several hundred of the upgrade kits for use on future GT350s (many of which were factory- and dealer-installed on subsequent 1966–1969 GT350s). Estimates stated that the package was good for a 45-percent power increase, bringing the 306 horsepower rating up to over 440 horses.

This example, chassis number 5S425, is one of the two 1965 prototypes to be factory-equipped with a Paxton-supercharged V-8. It was delivered new to Shelby American's Los Angeles factory on June 4, 1965. About a week later, work began to manufacture the car into a GT350. Work was completed by the end of that month. The car was finished in iconic Wimbledon White with Guardsman Blue stripes and was wearing the Shelby-Cragar mag wheels.

Upon completion, the car was consigned to the Paxton products division of the Studebaker Corporation. Then under the control and management of the Granatelli family, Paxton was charged with the development of a high-performance supercharger package option for future runs of the GT350. The prototype equipment was installed on this car, which was one of two such installations to Shelby America's specification in 1965.

The car then became a factory demonstrator before being shipped to Trudell Ford in Warren, Michigan. From there, it was purchased by William Kardosh, also of Warren, on July 7, 1966. In September, it was purchased by Lee Swonder, of Dearborn, Michigan. While under Swonder's care, the original engine was replaced with a new 302 long-block engine sometime later in the 1970s. The original engine was sold off, although its ownership history was closely documented.

The car remained under Mr. Swonder for thirty-eight years. The current owner purchased it from Mr. Swonder in 2005, becoming the car's third caretaker. The new owner was able to relocate its original engine and reunited it with the car. The car has an original, and unique, cast-finned aluminum 'Cobra' carburetor pressure box that sits atop the engine.

By Daniel Vaughan | Nov 2014
This GT350 was purchased new from Ford in Charlotte, NC by a wealthy cabinet maker for his teenage son, Mike Cooper. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the teenager went completely wild with the car and his school career was brought to a close by his head teacher! Cooper spent a lot of his time terrorizing the streets of Charlotte as well as driving at the Shuffle Town dragstrip where he was seldom defeated. The car's current owner bought the car in 1978 and drove it more sedately for a number of years before retiring the car in the early 1990s. A thorough restoration was completed in early 2000 and it was awarded the highest score ever in the history of the Shelby American Automobile Club for a 1965 GT350.
Chassis Num: 5S558
This Coupe was the fourth from the last GT350 to be produced in 1965. It was delivered to Shelby American in June 1965 and the finished car was delivered to Warren Andersen Ford in Riverside, CA a month later. Its first owner was Lloyd Asbury of San Bernardino, CA who owned the car for 40 years, keeping it under a cover in his driveway. Discovered in 2009 by Craig Conley, the car retained all of its original components and even its 1965 black and yellow license plate. The current owner acquired the car in 2010 and it has been restored by the ex-Newman-Haas/Mario Andretti Crew Chief, Don Hoevel.
Chassis Num: SFM5010
Sold for $528,000 at 2007 RM Auctions.
Sold for $418,000 at 2010 Gooding & Company.
This is the Advanced Prototype GT350. It was the 10th Shelby Mustang to be completed in January of 1965. The car was then sent to the engine department to be supercharged and was used as the prototype test bed for the Paxton/McCullogh supercharger which was offered as an option on later production cars. This unique GT350 was fitted with the 1965 Thunderbird taillights and 1966 side scoops and was also used to develop many of the modifications for the later GT350s, including the Shelby/Cragar wheels, folding rear seat and functional brake cooling ducts. It also had a Hollywood career in the Paramount movie driven by James Caan in the Stock Car racing film Red Line 7000 in 1965.
Chassis Num: SFM5S059
Few names are as revered in the automotive world as the Shelby G.T.350. From the racetrack to the showroom floor, the Shelby G.T.350 put the blue oval firmly into the winners circle.

But when Ford Motor Company first tasked Shelby American to hot rod 'a secretary's car' as Carroll Shelby called it, one of the most hotly debated topics was what to name the car. After listening to the arguments, Shelby shook his head in disgust.

So he asked his crew to measure the distance between two of his buildings in Venice, California, where the cars were initially to be built next to the 289 Shelby Cobras. When the response came back that it was about 350 feet, Shelby dubbed the car the 'GT.350.'

'A car makes the name, the name does not make the car,' Carroll Shelby said.

Victories on road courses worldwide, drag strips, autocrosses and even spotlights made the contentious name legendary. Indeed, the car made the name, and Ford, synonymous with performance.

This car, SFM5S059 was received by Shelby American in Venice on December 22, 1964, and finished on February 2, 1965. Shipped to Larsen Ford of (White Plains, NY, the Shelby GT350 was invoiced at $3,646 plus $220 for Cragar wheels and $102.75 freight for a total $3,968.75. The blue LeMans stripes were included free of charge.
Chassis Num: SFM5019
SFM5019 is one of the earliest Shelby GT350 Mustangs, and one of the first to be raced in 1965. The build of this Shelby Mustang is so early, that no street /'S' or race/'R' model designations had been coded into the Shelby serial/VIN number.

SFM5019 was purchased by Hayward Ford in March of 1965. This car was purchased with the sole intention of racing in the SCCA's B-Production class. Because only two prototype 'R-Model' race cars had built by Shelby American to date, and Carter/Hayward wanted to go racing immediately, they decided to do a dealer built of 5019 to 'R-Model' specifications at Hayward Ford. SFM5019 was purchased from Shelby American together with the necessary 'R-Model' race c components for it to compete in the B-Production class. Dick Carter, Hayward Ford's performance salesman, drove SFM5019 quite successfully in SCCA competition, in both 1965 and 1966 and as a result was instrumental in helping establish the early winning track record of the Shelby GT350's.

SFM5019 was racing before 35 of the 36 R-models.
SFM5019 appears to have been the second GT350 to begin racing in the SCCA.
SFM5019 was the Regional B-Production Champion in 1965. Dick Carter, driving SFM5019, was the SCCA Northern Pacific Rookie of the Year in 1965.
Chassis Num: SFM5S057
The first Shelby GT350's were built at 1042 Princeton Street in Venice, California next to factory Cobra racecars. With the introduction of both the Shelby GT350 and the new 427 big block Cobra, Shelby was forced to find larger facilities.

Shelby American moved in 1965, just as the GT350 project was ramping up. The company and race teams had outgrown the Princeton shop, and everything was moved to a hangar at LAX. The address, 6501 West Imperial Highway, was perfect for the company with jets taking off a hundred yards away.

One of the most famous videos of the period was filmed there, with the legend uttering the iconic line, 'My name is Carroll Shelby and performance is my business.'

A total of two thousand, eight hundred eighty-nine street GT350s were built from 1965 to 1966, plus the handful of competition models. This car, chassis number SFM5S057 was finished on March 17, 1965. Shipped to Nagle Ford of Rochester, NY, it was invoiced at $3,646 plus $220 for Cragar wheels and $87.45 in freight charges for a total of $3,953.45.
Chassis Num: SFM5S492
Sold for $385,000 at 2012 Barrett-Jackson.
From the beginning, Shelby GT350's have been considered collectible vehicles. As soon as enthusiasts could get their hands on one, Shelbys were often hidden away and lost to time. That was the case with SFM5S492, which was a 'barn-find' discovered in pristine condition.

SFM5S492 was ordered by Shelby American on June 13, 1965. It was billed to Galpin Motors in San Fernando, CA with Cragar wheels and freight for a total price of $3,902.75. LeMans stripes were included free of charge. The car was then shipped to Webster Ford Sales in Caruthers, CA.

This time capsule was purchased by the original owner, Ken Coventry, who stored it from 1974 until June of 2009. SFM5S492 is a survivor car in original condition.
Chassis Num: SFM5S226
Sold for $242,000 at 2013 RM Auctions.
SCCA regulations required at least 100 street legal versions of the GT350 be sold to private customers in order for it to qualify for B/Production. During 1965, a total of 562 examples were sold. This particular example was originally delivered to Adamson Ford, of Birmingham, Alabama. It was acquired by Betty Culp, of Texas. It was later acquired by Lee Larsen of Louisiana, and then to collector Lee Herrington. It was later given a restoration by Shelby specialists of Fitzgerald Motorsports in Laconia, New Hampshire. The current owner acquired it in 2000.
By Daniel Vaughan | Jan 2016
The Ford Mustang first appeared in 1964 and was immediately popular for its style and its capabilities. The largest engine offering of the time was the 289 V-8 K-code small block engine which was sufficient but enthusiasts wanted and demanded more power. The base engine was a six-cylinder power plant. The body style configurations included coupe, convertible and fastback. In its first year of production over 500,000 examples were produced.

Ford turned to SCCA racing to stir even more popularity for the car and to prove its true potential. Unfortunately, SCCA rules for sports cars required two seats which the Mustang failed to qualify for since it had seating for four. The Mustang was a new breed with plenty of room to grow and improve. Ford turned to the legendary Carroll Shelby who had aided them in securing a LeMans victory with their GT 40s. He was also well known for his Ford powered Shelby Cobras which had dominated the SCCA circuit for many years.

In order to qualify for homologation requirements, 100 examples needed to be produced by January 1st, 1965. Amazingly, the cars were ready to go by the due date, all painted in Wimbledon White livery with Guardsman Blue stripes. Well, they weren't entirely ready but they did pass the inspection.

Under the fiberglass hood was a K-code engine that had been modified with 715cfm 4-barrel carburetors on high-rise intake manifolds, aluminum oil pans and fabricated tube headers feeding dual exhausts with glass pack mufflers. The engine was concealed with a fiberglass hood. An aluminum case Borg-Warner T-10 four-speed manual gearbox was matted to this potent engines and set power to the rear wheels. Since the Mustang was now packing extra power, the rest of the components were modified to respond appropriately. The suspension was reinforced with front A-arms, rear axle trailing arms, and Koni shocks. The brakes were enlarged and quick steering adapters were installed. Compling with the two seater requirement was easy; the back seat was removed and replaced with a fiberglass package shelf.

In 1965 there were 562 Shelby GT 350 models created with 36 being designated for racing and given the code 'R'. 252 of the 1966 350 GT's were created at the end of 1965 and brought up to 1966 specifications.

There was little changed to the GT350 during the 1966 year. Peter Brock, Shelby's designer, came up with some simple modifications that slightly changed the aesthetics of the car but improved its capabilities. Air-intake scoops were added to force air to the rear brake pads which aided in keeping them cool. The C-pillar sail panel was removed and replaced with triangular windows. Four colors options were added to give the Mustangs a little extra flavor. The rear seats could now be installed as optional equipment and were given the functionality and flexibility of folding down. This allowed them to continue to qualify for sports car racing in SCCA while providing versatility while not at the track. An automatic was also optional though it slightly took away from the appeal of the sports car.

These new options aided the Ford/Shelby duo in selling 2378 examples in 1966.

In 1967 the Mustang body style was altered which meant there was more room in the engine bay. This was also the first year for the GT500 which boasted a 428 cubic-inch engine in true Shelby fashion producing more than 350 horsepower. The GT500 was given a unique front end with hood scoops and center mounted lights. The back of the car borrowed many components from the Thunderbird including the rear quarter scoops, sequential turn signals and the rear spoiler.

Shelby lost the lease for their factory at Los Angeles International Airport near the close of 1967 so operations were moved the Ionia, Michigan under the control of the Ford Motor Company.

In 1968, a convertible option was added to the Shelby line-up, available with either a 302- or 428-cubic-inch eight-cylinder engine. The High Performance 289 cubic-inch V8 was no longer offered on the Ford or Shelby versions of the Mustang. The 302 was standard on the GT350, equipped with an aluminum intake manifold and Holley 600 CFM carburetor capable of producing 250 horsepower. 1968 also marked the year that Ford took over production of the Shelby vehicles with operations moving to Livonia, Michigan.

The styling modifications for 1968 were minor. The front of the vehicle was restyled resulting in an aggressive appearance. The headlights switched back to the single seven-inch unit configuration with Lucas fog lamps positioned inside the grill. The hood was once again a fiberglass unit with repositioned scoops and air-extraction louvers.

The 428 engine increased in horsepower by 5 over the prior year. This was the result of a single four-barrel aluminum intake manifold in place of the prior dual-carburetor setup. To honor this achievement, the GT500 equipped with the 428Cj now became known as the GT500, or King of the Road. The documentation stated the engine produced 335 horsepower when actually it was over 400 with 440 foot-pounds of torque. These were the fastest Shelby production vehicles to date and offered superb handling, braking and most of all, acceleration. Due to the extra power, the brakes were enlarged and new components such as under-hood suspension bracing and staggered rear shocks prevented wheel hop and axle wind-up.

During 1968, 4451 examples were produced. 1253 fastbacks and 404 convertibles made up the GT350 model line. The GT500 was available as a fastback or convertible. There were 1140 GT500 fastbacks and 402 GT500 convertibles produced in 1968. 1968 also saw the production of 933 GT500KR fastbacks and 318 GT500KR convertibles. Only one GT500 Notchback Prototype was produced.

In 1969 Ford ended his agreement with the Ford Motor Company. The GT350 and GT500 continued to be sold into 1970 though little was changed. The 1970 models were actually left-overs from the prior year.

In 2005 at the New York International Auto Show, Ford and Shelby announced their plans for the production of a Ford Shelby Mustang GT500 with sales beginning in 2007. The car will be equipped with a 5.4 liter supercharged eight-cylinder engine with horsepower in the neighborhood of 475. In 2006 the rights to own the first modern Shelby Mustang produced sold at the Barrett-Jackson Collector Car Auction for 648,000 with the proceeds benefiting the Carroll Shelby Children's Foundation.

By Daniel Vaughan | Mar 2006
A 'pillar of American automotive lore', the Mustang is the vehicle the brought sporting dash and styling at a price that almost everyone could afford. Always extraordinarily attractive, the Mustang has been capturing the hearts of drivers for nearly 40 years. Introducing a whole new breed of automobile, the pony car, Ford wasn't content to stand on the sidelines while others jumped ahead. Rather than improving their lackluster intermediate, they designed a small sports car that would be 'the next hot item in the street wars'. Designed originally as a two-seater in the European tradition, the Mustang came with an obligatory back seat and a variety of options that came the buyer an opportunity to customize their purchase. The only class of muscle cars that still exists today, the pony car class originated by Mustang has continued to dominate.

With a long and VERY lucrative background, the Ford Mustang has a history like no other vehicle. There has been a longstanding bit of rivalry between the Ford Motor Company and the Chevy division from GM, since both companies operated on the same market. Ford introduced the Falcon in response to Chevy's release of the Corvair, and fortunately sold much better, similar to what the Thunderbird did to the Corvette in the 1950's.
Chevy's next move was to introduce the Corvair Monza, a sporty, compact vehicle that the public loved. To combat this new threat, Ford had to produce a brand new vehicle with not only a sporty image, but sporty actions that would attract the younger generation. Called the 'Pony Car', the Mustang was unveiled to the public on April 13, 1964 and was advertised as 'the car to be designed by you'. Knowing that baby boomers would be ruling the 1960's, and that they would want a car as vastly different from their parents' as possible, Ford designed a production vehicle that would wow this generation. Except for the Corvette, compared to every other American car then in production, the Mustang was stunning and gorgeously sleek. Wanting it to be an affordable vehicle, much of the Mustang's engineering would be shared with an existing Ford product.
The young vice president at Ford, Lee Iacocca is responsible for this iconic legend. Requests were made to him to bring back the two-seater Thunderbird, and in 1962 he built the Mustang I-prototype; which was a V4 two-seater. What was introduced in 1963 ended up being a four-seater that was met with overwhelming acclaim and the vehicle was taken into production. A variety of the Mustang's components, including the drivetrain, were 'borrowed' from the Falcon to reduce the cost of production. The Ford Mustang was launched at the World Exhibition of NY in the spring of 1964.

During its development, the Ford Mustang was extensively advertised to attract the maximum amount of appeal before it actually hit the streets. Ford ran simultaneous commercials on all three major television networks in 1964 and the response was overwhelming. The Mustang was the hot new thing, and everyone wanted their own. The standard Mustang cost around $2,400, and more than 22,000 Mustang's were sold on the first day. 100,000 Mustangs were sold in the first four months, 418,000 in the first year, and the 1,000,000th Mustang was sold in 1966.

Available in only two models originally, the 1964 ½ as it was dubbed, came as either a coupe or a convertible. Both of these models showcased a lengthened hood, a shortened rear deck, chrome grille with a running horse, full wheel covers and chrome wrap-around bumpers. A characteristic standard on the Mustang for years was the three taillights on both sides. The interior of the Mustang was just as sporty as the exterior, with two seats in the front and a tiny backseat.

The 1965 Mustang debuted as a simple sports vehicle powered by a 170 cid six cylinder and a pair of V8's. The name Mustang was taken from a fighter plane, the P-51 Mustang.
The horse motif quickly became the emblem for the mustang as preliminary allusions were made to the horse. Ford was enjoying its high volume sales and visibility, while buyers loved its low price, short trunk styling, long hood and variety of options. Halfway through 1964 Ford introduced the sporty 2+2 fastback body style that joined the hardtop coupe and convertible.

For the 1965 model year, the Fastback model was introduced and in April of this same year, the GT model was unveiled. For this year alone, over 500,000 Mustangs were produced.

Only minor cosmetic updates were made in 1966, while the choice of available interior colors and styles were increased to 34 variety options. To further separate the Mustang from its Falcon roots, the gauge cluster was redone, and the 260 cid V8 was replaced with 2 and 4 barrel version of the 289 cid V8. From 1965 through March 1rst 1966 the Shelby GT-350 Mustang dominated on the racing track. The Shelby was available in 4 different colors and received automatic transmission. Unique examples were prepared for Hertz Rent a Car for rental to weekend drag racers. Through 1968 a Paxton supercharger; which boosted horsepower as much as 40%, was available on the GT-350.

The following year the 1967 Mustang received a larger grille and simulated air-scoops. This year's version was a much more aggressive model that featured much more accurate to the available engines. Much bulkier sheetmetal below the beltline was added, along with a concave tail panel along with a full fastback roofline for the fastback body style. A big block 390 was introduced by Ford to compete with the all new Chevy Camaro SS396. The 390 was slightly detuned, but its popularity sealed the end of the 289 cid engine, which was dropped from the lineup. The GT/CS California Special was introduced in 1968 and received a new dashboard with two large meters, and three little ones. The GT350 continued to be powered by a modified 289 V8, though output dropped to 290bhp. The brand new GT500 was powered by a reworked 428V8. Featuring plenty of luxury options, the 1967 Shelby's were considered to be 'much more civilized', and appealed greatly to buyers. These were the final Shelby Mustangs actually built by Shelby-American, all future models would be built by Ford with little involvement by Shelby.

For the 1968 model year, the Mustang received side trim, a much simpler grille and a limited number of 427 engines. These engines cranked out 390bhp, though they were slightly detuned, they had amazing street popularity. The 428 Cobra Jet engine was introduced on April 1, 1968. Based on the regular 428, the Cobra Jet included larger valve heads, an oil-pan windage tray and the race 427's intake manifold. The output was listed at 335bhp and it featured ram-air induction and breathed through a functional hood scoop. Shelby's remained in the lineup and were joined by an available convertible model that was renamed the Shelby Cobra. The GT350 received a 302 cid 250 bhp engine in place of its 289 cid 306 bhp engine. The GT-500 was deleted and replaced by the GT-500KR ('King of the Road') halfway through the year. This new model came with the new Ram Air 428 Cobra Jet, still underrated at 335 bhp. A total of 249,447 2D Hardtop models were produced this year, 42,581 fastback models, and 25,376 convertibles.

The 1969 Mustang was much larger, longer by nearly 4 inches, and much heavier. A running horse, similar to the one of the front fenders of the first generation appeared in place of the corral, and new inner headlights were introduced. New models introduced this year were the Grande, the Mach 1, the Boss 429 and the Boss 302. The Grande model was based solely on the hardtop coupe and was a luxurious model both inside and out. The Mach 1 was a vehicle with its racing side accentuated, while the Mach 1 featured a plus interior, air scoops, a tough Windsor engine, a matblack hood and heavy striping. Arriving standard with a 351 cid V8, the Mach 1 could also be had with the 428 Cobra Jet, which now came in three states of tune, the first being a non-Ram Air version, the second was the Ram-Air version and the and the Super Cobra Jet which came with the Drag Pack option.

The Boss Mustangs were named after stylist Larry Shinoda's nickname for Ford president Semon 'Bunkie' Knudson. The Boss 302 Mustang was an exclusive model that was introduced to give Ford an opportunity to use the vehicle on the Trans-Am races. Before Ford was allowed to run the Boss 302 on the racing circuit, Ford had to sell a thousand vehicles to the public, according to the Trans-Am regulations. The Boss 302 was Ford's response to Chevy's Camaro Z/28 in Trans Am racing. The Boss 429 package came complete with a race ready 429 cid V8 with ram air induction, an aluminum high riser and header type exhaust manifolds. Unfortunately, the Boss 429s were a complete disappointment on the streets where their dependence on high revs hurt their street starts, and the original batch had incorrect valve springs that would stop winding at 4500rpm rather than 6000rpm. They did featured good handling, and the Boss 429 lasted through 1970. A total of 72,458 Mach 1's were produced this year, along with 14,746 convertibles, 22,182 Grande Hardtop Coupes, 1,934 Boss 302's and 858 of the Boss 429.

For the 1970 model year, the Boss 302 and 429 continued on, while the 428 Cobra Jet remained as the top engine choice for the Mach 1 Mustang. The 429 Cobra Jet was new for 1970 and standard in the Boss 429. The Super Cobra Jet was rated for 375 bhp while the 429 Cobra Jet was rated at 370 bhp. 1970 was the final year for the Shelby Cobra's. A total of 40,970 Mach 1's were produced, 7,643 convertibles, 13,581 Grande Hardtop Coupes, 6,318 Boss 302's and 498 Boss 429s.

For the 1970 Mustang, Ford went back to just two headlights, replacing the outboard lights with attractive scoops that fed nothing at all. The phony side scoops were also deleted on all models. The 351 V8's were now produced at Ford's Cleveland plant rather than the Windsor, Ontario facility and were of a slightly different design. Sales for the 1970 model year dipped to 190,727 Mustangs.

The 1971 Mustang was extended by 2.1 inches of length, 2.8 inches of width, a 100lbs were added and an additional inch of wheelbase was added. Ford's decade of 'Total Performance' was reaching its end. Taken off of the lineup this year was the Shelby models, the Boss 302 and the Boss 429 models. The remaining engine choices were not great, as the 351 engine was detuned from 300 bhp to 285 bhp while the 429 Cobra Jet dropped 5 bhp down to 370 bhp.

The Mach 1 Mustang and the all-new Boss 351 model was dominated the performance end for Mustang in 1970. The Mach 1 featured the 351 Cleveland V8 as its standard engine and it came with 285bhp though a 330bhp version was also available. The top power choice was the 429 Super Cobra Jet Ram Air, while the 429 Cobra Jet sported 370bhp. The 429 Super Cobra Jet Ram Air had 11.3:1 compression and had 375bhp. This would the Boss 351's only season as Ford's performance was continuously declining. The 351 weighed less, and featured a race bred 351 engine that had a radical solid-lifter cam, 11.0:1 compression, ram-air induction. It also came with a Hurst four-speed transmission and 3.91:1 Traction-Lok differential. Only 149,678 Mustangs were sold in 1971, 41,049 less than the previous year.

1972 led to all power ratings being listed in net ratings which included all accessories. The end of Ford Mustang performance, this led to some drastic drops in power listings, which included the drop of all big block options. The Mach 1 ended up being the only model with any performance, as the Boss 351 was dropped. A total of 27,675 Mach 1's were produced, and 6,401 convertibles. The top engine option for 1972 was a 275bhp 351 Cleveland.

For 1973 emission controls were only tightened more, and all engine choices' power ratings were dropped. Mandatory bumpers that could withstand a 5mph collision were the result of new federal guidelines. These bumpers did not do much to improve the look of the Mustang. Producing just 156bhp, the top engine was a 351 V8. Sales picked up for 1973 and a total of 134,867 Mustangs were sold, Ford realized that it was time to rethink the Mustang.

The fifth generation of the Ford Mustang was introduced in 1974. Unfortunately the Mustang II was considered by many to be too small, underpowered, feature poor handling, but surprisingly, it sold very well. Baby boomers were turning to smaller imported cars, and emissions regulations made the high-compression, high-horsepower V8's rather unstable. Ford decided to make the Mustang a smaller, more fuel-efficient car to keep up with the market.

The 1974 Mustang II was unveiled without the Falcon components that had been a standard from day one. The all-new Mustang was placed atop the basic structure and suspension of its subcompact Pinto. Still a unibody design, the Pinto was smaller than the Falcon, but basically similar, and the front suspension was still a double wishbone design while the rear suspension was still bolted to its solid rear axle to a pair of leaf springs. The chassis of the Pinto did have a rack-and-pinion steering gear instead of the Falcon's re-circulating ball, and the front disc brakes were standard.

With an overall length of only 175 inches, the Mustang II rode on a very small 96.2 inch wheelbase and weighed about 400 lbs less than the previous years version. Though a smaller size, the Mustang II actually featured traditional Mustang styling features like the scalloped sides, the running horses in the grille and the three-piece taillights. The Mustang II was available as either a fastback hatchback or a notchback coupe. Prices ranged from $3,134 for the base coupe and $3,674 for a Mach 1 hatchback.

The 1974 Mustang II was the first Mustang to ever be offered with a four-cylinder engine and without a V8. Rated at a lowly 88 horsepower, the base engine was a single-overhead cam four that displaced 2.3 liters. The German-built 'Cologne' 2.8 liter OHV V6 was the only optional engine and it only produced a disappointing 105 horsepower. The first Mustang II was considered to be very underpowered. The standard four-speed manual or a three-speed automatic were the only two transmissions available.

For this year, a 'Ghia' notchback and Mach 1 fastback were made available. The Ghia featured a vinyl top and special interior trim that was 'fancy'. The Mach 1 came with the V6. Despite being an unpopular vehicle today, this more economical Mustang II was sold an amazingly 385,993 units for 1974.

For 1975 the V8 was returned to the Mustang lineup. Achieving 122 horsepower, the 5.0-liter V8 had only a two-barrel carb and exhaled through a cataylic converter. The automatic transmission was the only transmission available behind the V8. A new 'MPG' coupe was added to the 1975 model lineup. Unfortunately the Mustang II wasn't as popular as its predecessors and production dipped to 188,586.

The following year not many changes were made, and all the variations from the 1975 model year followed along with the addition of a new 'Stallion' appearance package that was available on the fastback. The Cobra II package was also introduced this year and added a large rear spoiler, a fake hood scoop and blue stripes across white paint to a V8-powered fastback. It looked impressive, though the Cobra II wasn't any faster than other similarly powered Mustang IIs. Also new this year was the now 134-horsepower V8 made available with a four-speed manual transmission, with an output of the standard four surging to 92 horsepower while the V6's rating jumped to 102 horsepower. Sales for 1976 peaked at 187,567 units.

The 1977 Mustang II was only featured minor trim changes from the previous year. The Cobra II did receive a variety of new colors available. The options list now included T-top removable glass roof panels and simulated wire wheel covers. The V6 power dropped to 93 hp, and the four down to 89hp. Production was dropped down to 153,117 units for 1977.

The extreme 'King Cobra' version was introduced in 1978 and featured some snazzy graphics along with a hood scoop turned backward. The only changes for the Mustang II for this year were minor updates to the trim. Production for 1978 surprisingly peaked at 192,410 units.

The sixth generation of the Ford Mustang was unveiled in 1979 and was built atop the shortened chassis of the Ford Fairmont 'Fox' body that had been introduced the year before. The Pinto parts were replaced with the unibody structure of the Fox platform, but that's where the similarities ended. A modified MacPherson strut system was the new front suspension that mounted a spring separate from the strut itself, while a new link and coil spring rear suspension held up the back of the car. This basic suspension system would remain in use on the Ford Mustang until the 2003 mode lyear.

The 1979 Mustang could be purchased as a coupe or a fastback hatchback. Measuring at 179.1 inches, the new Mustang rode on a 100.4-inch wheelbase. This model featured much more room than previous Mustangs due to a more upright-oriented cockpit and flatter doors that allowed for more shoulder and hip room. Not really recognizable as previous models, the new Mustang was attractive, angular and handsome. Four square headlights appeared, but no running horse in the shovel nose grille, and the sides also no longer featured the signature side scallop. The taillights were also divided into six segments instead of three.

The same three engines from the 1978 Mustang II could be found on the 1979 model. Rated at 88 hp was the 2.3-liter SOHC, the 4.9-liter V8 achieved 140 horsepower, while the 2.8-liter Cologne V6 made 109 HP. New this year was a turbocharged version of the four that was capable of 140 hp, but unfortunately this version had epic boost lag and very bad reliability. The previous 200-cubic-inch; 3.3-liter OHV straight six was reintroduced and achieved 94 hp. Three-speed automatic was optional, while four-speed manual transmissions were standard behind all engines.

1979 was a very popular year for the Mustang! Around 369,936 models were built this year and the most desirable of all models this year ended up being the 6,000 Indy pace car replica fastbacks. This model came with a unique hood scoop, a snazzy rear spoiler, a unique front air dam, Recaro front seats and black and silver paint with orange graphics. This car could be purchased with either turbo four or V8 power that came with the TRX wheel and tire package. A 'Cobra' package was available on the hatchback and featured a fake hood scoop, though no pillars and the Gria trim returned to the coupe.

Though very few visual changes were made for the 1980 model year for the Mustang, several options were changed that affected this years lineup that made this year a bad year for Mustang. The 2.8-liter V6 and the 5.0-liter V8 were both deleted from the line, while the only six available was the pathetic 3.3-liter straight six. The only V8 was a new version of Ford's small-block that displaced 255 cubic inches, and could only shrug out 119 hp. This was considered to be the worst V8 engine ever offered in a Mustang. The Turbo four became the most powerful engine available in 1980.

The 1980 Cobra package included all of the spoilers and scoops used on the previous year's pace car, along with a gaudy oversized cobra hood decal. A total of 271,322 units were sold.

In 1981 a five-speed manual transmission finally became available for the Ford Mustang as an option behind the regular and turbocharged fours. The T-Top roof returned to the options list for the Mustang this year. Sale dipped down to 182,552 vehicles.

Finally in 1982 things started to improve for the Ford Mustang. A new 'High Output' version of the 5.0-liter V8 was unveiled and could achieve an impressive 157 hp with 2-barrel carburetion in a revived Mustang GT hatchback. The 1982 Mustang GT was backed be a four-speed manual transmission. Three progressively more luxurious series were introduced also this year, the L, GL and GLX. For a brief time, the turbo four was deleted, while the base four, iron lump straight six and the 4.2-liter V8 all continued on through 1982. A 'Special Service Package' notchback coupe was introduced (though not sold to the public) and was equipped with the Mustang GT's 157-horsepower V8 and four-speed transmission. This was a pursuit vehicle for the California Highway Patrol, and the CHP purchased 400 of these vehicles. These models continued in production until 1993 when Ford ended production.

In 1983 an all-new grille with Ford's Blue Oval logo placed at its center. The Mustang convertible returned to the lineup in the form of a conversion performed by ASC, Inc. on coupe bodies. This convertible was available in either GLX or GT trim and came with power operation, rear-quarter windows that rolled down and a real glass rear window.

Also in this year, the Mustang drivetrain was revamped. The straight six the 4.2 liter V8 were completely deleted while an updated version of the turbocharged 2.3-liter SOHC four was reintroduced to the lineup, this time with electronic fuel injection that improved the turbo lag and increased engine longevity. The 5.0-liter HO V8 now came with a four-barrel carburetor and was rated at 175 hp. The V8 engine was now available with the fabulous Borg-Warner T5 five-speed manual transmission. The six-cylinder option was the new 'Essex' 3.8-liter V6 that achieved 112 horsepower. Despite all of these modifications, 1983 wasn't the greatest year for the Ford Mustang, and only a total of 120,873 Mustangs were sold, and this included 23,428 convertibles.

Not too many changes were made for the 1984 model year, as most was a carryover. With 165 hp, a fuel-injected version of the HO V8 was available with the automatic transmission. Back for one final year, the turbo four was now rated at 145 horsepower in the Mustang GT. The suspension tuning was revised a bit, and halfway through the 1984 model year, Ford introduced a GT-350 20th anniversary package for convertibles and hatchbacks.

The big news for this year was introduction of the sophisticated SVO Mustang. Showcasing a very unique look, the SVO didn't have a grille on its front end and it featured single square headlamps. Powered by an inter-cooled version of the turbocharged 2.3-liter four, it was rated at a very impressive175 hp. The SVO was equipped nicely and featured 16-inch wheels on five-lug hubs with four-wheel disc brakes. Unfortunately it was priced very high at $15,596 and it was no match in speed to the V8-powered Mustang GT. Sales were not impressive.

In 1985 an all-new grille design was introduced and it featured a single large slit between the two pairs of headlights. The Mustang GT received a new set of 15-inch cast-aluminum wheels with P225/60VR15 Goodyear Eagle 'Gatorback' tires. The 5.0 HO engine now could achieve 210 hp in four-barrel carbureted form. The turbocharged four was taken off the Mustang GT options list, meanwhile the SVO continued in the lineup.
The only induction system on the 1986 5.0 HO was fuel injection, output was 200 hp in the Mustang GT with both the five-speed manual and four-speed automatic. This year real dual exhaust was introduced and now there where two catalytic converters so each engine bank featured its own exhaust right to the tail pipes. The SVO had an output of 200 hp and its turbo four was recalibrated.

The V6 engine option was deleted in 1987, which resulted in the deletion of the expensive SVO. Trim levels were down to just LX and GT, the coupe in LX was only the hatchback and convertible available in both trims. The GT received its own grille-less face, specific taillights, rear spoiler, turbine wheels and urethane side skirts. The LX and GT models also received a new interior that included an improved dashboard that placed all of the instruments in a pod directly in front of the driver. Now even the 2.3-liter, SOHC four-cylinder engine now featured fuel injection and could get 90 hp. The 5.0-liter HO was now updated and could achieve 225 hp regardless of transmission. The 1988 and '89 Mustangs remained basically unchanged from 1987, while the '5.0 Mustang' also remained mechanically unchanged through 1993.

For the 1990 model year Ford was seriously contemplating re-engineering the vehicle to accept a driver-side airbag, but they chose to spend the money and installed the airbag, meanwhile eliminating the tilt steering column in the process. The following year an all-new five-spoke, 16-inch wheel was available on both LX and GT 5.0-liter Mustangs. This model continued on the next year, with only a few 'limited edition' models offered.

In 1993 the Mustang GT and basic Mustang LX remained virtually unchanged. The 5.0-liter engine's output was updated to 205 horsepower and an all-new special-edition Mustang, the SVT Cobra was introduced! Extremely attractive, the SVT Cobra featured 1983 Mustang taillights, the front air dam from the GT, 17-inch wheels and a new grille with the running horse emblem prominently displayed. The 5.0-liter inside the Cobra was updated to achieve 235 horsepower, while the larger wheels, tires and four-wheel disc brakes 'all expanded the other parameters of performance'. Ford was able to sell 114,228 Fox-based Mustangs during this year, even after 15 years in production. A total of 4,993 Cobra's were produced during the '93 model year, while an additional 107 'Cobra R's' were produced. These models were track ready versions of the Cobra that were built without normal luxuries like a backseat or even a radio.

The seventh generation of the Ford Mustang was introduced in 1994 and continued on until 1998. This new Mustang was very obviously influenced by the styling themes of previous Mustangs. The galloping horse was once again placed in the grille, and the side scallop was returned while the taillights were split into three segments, horizontally rather than vertically. The interior featured a twin-pod dashboard that utilized the dashes between '64 ½ and '73. A two-door coupe with a semi-fastback roof and a convertible where the only two body styles offered.

For this year, the Fox platform was thoroughly reinforced, but the basic modified MacPherson strut front and coil sprung solid rear axle remained the same. ABS was optional and four-wheel disc brakes were now used throughout the line. The new convertible featured the drop top, and this was the first Mustang convertible since 1973 that was actually conceived as a convertible and not a conversion. The structure was much stiffer and the car now handled than the previous year's model.

Only two engine options were available for 1994, Base Mustangs received a fuel-injected development of the 3.8-liter Essex V6 rated at 145 horsepower. The GT received an updated version of 5.0-liter V8 with a flatter intake manifold that was rated at 215 horsepower. Both of these engines could be joined to either five-speed manual or four-speed automatic transmissions. The 1994 Mustang GT could be purchased with either 16-inch or 17-inch wheels and tires, and it was found to be the most dependable and best handling Mustang.

The Mustang was picked to pace the Indianapolis 500 for the third time in its history. Ford used its SVT; Special Vehicle Team to create another Cobra version of the Mustang. The end result of the teams effort was a slightly modified GT that featured 17-inch wheels, and due to a set of Ford's 'GT40' cylinder heads and a different intake, a 5.0-liter V8 that produced 240 horsepower. The Cobra was easily recognized by its blistered hood, front fascia with round foglamps, rear spoiler and snake logos on the fenders and in their grilles. The Cobra used to pace the 500 was a convertible, while the Cobra coupe was much more common. In 1994 alone 1,000 Cobra convertibles were sold, while 5,009 Cobra coupes were sold this year.

A big hit, the new Mustang was sold into a market that wasn't the same as it had been in 1965. A total of 123,198 Mustangs were sold during the 1994 model year.

Not many changes were made in 1995 as the concept was basically very fresh and quite popular. A new GTS model was introduced this year, and was basically the Mustang GT's drivetrain in a very plain Mustang shell. Sales were increased to 190,994 units for this year and that included 48,264 convertibles along with another 5,006 SVT Cobras.

For 1996 the 5.0-liter V8 was replaced with Ford's 4.6 liter, SOHC V8 in the Mustang GT. This engine was rated at the same 215 horsepower as the outgoing 5.0. The 4.6 started a whole new trend in Mustang history as the old small-block Ford V8 engine was deleted after 31 years of faithful service. The 3.8-liter V6 was re-rated to 150 horsepower and transmission choices remained the five-speed manual or four-speed automatic.

For 1995 several 250 Cobra R models were introduced, powered by a 5.8-liter version of the Ford small-block V8 that achieved 300 horsepower. Unfortunately they weren't very popular due to the lack of creature comforts like AC, radio and a rear seat.

The following year Ford added new taillights for the Mustang that were divided vertically into three segments. The only other minor update was revised front fender badges on the GT heralding the 4.6 engine. A majorly updated version of the SVT Cobra was introduced in this same year and it came complete with an all-aluminum, DOHC, 32-valve version of the 4.6-liter engine. The hood featured a new bulge to accommodate the tall engine. This SVT Cobra came with 305 horsepower and performed so much better than the previous model, this was the most powerful V8 in a Mustang since the Boss 351 back in 1971. In 1996 Cobra production peaked at 7,496 coupes and 2,510 convertibles.

For the 1997 model year, the Mustang was available in a variety of new colors, and it sported new upholstery and a new security system. A total of 108,344 Mustangs were produced this year, 6,961 of them were Cobra coupes, and 3,088 Cobra convertibles. The Cobra received updated five-spoke wheels, revisions to the 4.6-liter V8 that increased output to 225 horsepower.

The 1998 Mustang was basically a carryover, and sales increased nicely to a total of 175,522 produced for the year. Out of that amount, 5,174 of those were Cobra coupes and 3,480 Cobra convertibles.

For 1999 the Mustang entered into its eighth generation of production and to celebrate, received an updated front and rear fascia along with new sharply creased fenders. A new 'corral' was also added around the galloping horse in the Mustang's grille. The interior and chassis basically remained the same; the only big change for this year was that all 1999 Mustangs received special 35th anniversary badges on their front fenders. Horsepower ratings were largely increased though for this year as significant revisions were made to both the base Mustang's 3.8-liter V6 and the GT's 4.6-liter V8. The V6 was now capable of 190 horsepower while the V8 was at an impressive 260. The five-speed manual or four-speed automatic transmission options remained the same.

The updated Cobra was intended to be the pride and joy for the Mustang in 1999. The first independent rear suspension was utilized for the first time on a Mustang, and it was basically a trailing arm system that incorporated lightweight aluminum control arms that rode in its individual cradle, which bolted in place of the solid rear axle still used on other Mustangs. The rear suspension was now in great shape, but unfortunately the updated 4.6-liter, DOHC, 32-valve V8 was originally rated at 320 hp but many owners found that their engines often made less than 300 hp. Cobra owners posted a class-action suit and demanded refunds or new engines, and Ford scrambled desperately to satisfy their customers. Cobra production was suspended during the 2000 model year, only a total of 8.095 Cobra's were produced in 1999 and only 454 for 2000.

For 2000, the Mustang remained mostly the same except for the addition of new fender badges. Powered by a 5.4-liter, iron-block version of the DOHC, 32-valve engine that rated at an incredible 385 hp, a very small number (300) of 'Cobra R' models were introduced this year. They came very basic, and very pricey, with a hefty pricetag of $55,845, and lacking any comforts like AC, or a backseat, surprisingly, these models sold out immediately. 2000 was a great year for the Mustang, and a total of 215,393 units were sold.

2001, the Cobra returned! Also new this year was Mustang's attempt at a bit of nostalgia with its special 'Bullitt' edition Mustang GT coupe that was designed to evoke memories of the 1968 Mustang driven by Steve McQueen in the film of the same name. Based on the regular GT, the Bullitt featured a lowered suspension, new five-spoke wheels, and a fuel-filler door designed to look similar to an aircraft's. The interior of the Bullitt featured special upholstery and unique graphics on the instrumentation, an aluminum ball shift knob and aluminum-finished pedals, all reminiscent of the '68 GT. The engine could achieve 265 hp and featured a large throttle body. The Bullitt could be purchased in blue, black or dark green. A fabulous success, all 5,000 models were sold immediately.

For 2002 the popular wheels from the Bullitt made its way to the options list for the regular Mustang, but this was the only change for this year. The following year, a much more powerful Cobra was introduced, along with an all-new limited edition Mach 1 model. Pumping out an astonishing 390 hp, the new Cobra utilized a supercharged version of the 4.6-liter, DOHC, 32-valve V8. This baby was the quickest and fastest Mustang EVER built by Ford.

The new Mach 1 introduced in 2002 was basically mechanically identical to the '98 Cobra in specification. It did use a normally aspirated version of the 4.6-liter, DOHC engine that was now rated at 305 hp, a solid rear axle and five-speed manual transmission. The 'Shaker' hood scoop returned on the Mach 1. Other features were a flat, black painted hood and 17-inch versions of the Magnum 500 wheels from the 1960's.

For 2004 the Mustang celebrated 40 years of production and placed a 40th anniversary badge on each '04 Mustang. An Anniversary package could be bought, and it included beige stripes, crimson paint, beige wheels and monogrammed floor mats. Ford introduced a completely redesigned Mustang at the 2004 North American International Auto Show, dubbed 'S-197'. Based on an all-new D2C platform, the 'S-197' was developed under the direction of Chief Engineer Hau Thai-Tang and exterior styling designer Sid Ramnarace.

2005 heralded the ninth generation of the Ford Mustang, and the all-new Mustang debuted first as a concept. Finally the Fox platform was put to bed and replaced with the DEW98 platform that was already being used for the Lincoln LS and the Thunderbird. Wanting to pay tribute to the many classic models in its history, the new Mustang featured the side sculpting, the fastback roofline and taillights, reminiscent of the '65 Mustang, while the canted nose with its large grille and round headlights was much like the '67 to '69 Mustangs.

The interior of the '05 Mustang was also very similar to the old model, with a dual-hooded dash with optional aluminum accent panels it was much like the '67-'68 Mustang. The big speedo and tach, round steering wheel hub and circular air vents were also reminiscent to old models. The backlighting was changeable and at the simple press of a button could be changed from white, blue, green to orange hues. The seating in the Mustang was now switched up, going from the 'sitting on an ottoman' seating position, was replaced with a seat where one sits more in, rather than on the seats. The manual gearshifter of the past was now replaced with a remote-linkage setup that puts the stick within easy reach.

The GT featured 300 hp and 315 lb-ft of torque, along the 4.6-liter, all aluminum V8 sports three valves per cylinder along with variable valve timing. The V6 six-shooter can achieve 200 hp, featured 235 lb-ft of torque and came with the option of five-speed manual or four-speed automatic. The GT came with five gears, and the option of either automatic or manual gearbox. The newest Mustang is quite sprightly, mostly due to the new suspension and lighter-weight components, along with repositioned and lighter coil springs. Larger brakes were also added, along with a more stout rear axle with more effective control arms.

This current generation is manufactured at the AutoAlliance International plan in Flat Rock, Michigan.

By Jessica Donaldson
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1981 Morgan Plus 4
Very Early Production 1965 Shelby GT 350 to Cross the Block at Russo and Steele Monterey!
Scottsdale, Arizona (July 21st, 2016) The Shelby GT 350 is a legend. Using Ford's already incredible K-code Mustang fastback as a basis, Carroll Shelby made the 'it' car of the '60s even hotter by making his version of the Mustang faster, lighter, and even more fun to drive. In the first year of production, 562 examples were built, and these are considered to be the most pure and desirable GT 350s built in the model's short history. With the many well-known Shelby touches, these were and ...[Read more...]
More than three decades after taping a full-page ad ripped from a 1965 car magazine above his bunk on an Alaskan crab boat, Mark Hovander is touring the country this year with the same Ford Shelby GT350 Mustang pictured on that page. Hovander and his crosstown friend John Atzbach are big fans of the first-generation Shelby Mustang, and between them they own two of the three original prototypes. As Mustang enthusiasts across the country and around the world celebrate 50 years of their favorite...[Read more...]
 DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Jan. 28, 2016) – Scott Pruett, known as a savvy and disciplined racer with a record 60 victories in IMSA competition, was honored by the Road Racing Drivers Club with the 2016 Phil Hill Award. RRDC president Bobby Rahal made the presentation at a dinner on Jan. 27 prior to the running of the Rolex 24 At Daytona, the season opener of the 2016 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. The Phil Hill Award has been presented annually since 1993 to the person who the RR...[Read more...]
 HILLIARD, Ohio (Oct. 23, 2015) - Twenty-six race-car drivers and motorsports professionals have been voted into the Road Racing Drivers Club in 2015. The group includes 11 Regular Members from the open-wheel and sports-car racing ranks, 10 Associate Members and five Honorary Members. The current roster of RRDC members now numbers 486. Voting was held among all current RRDC members. 'The RRDC is honored to announce the addition to its roster a group of outstanding racing champions and o...[Read more...]
• Iconic Shelby FIA Cobra to be Celebrated
Scottsdale, Ariz. – Jan. 17, 2014 – In 1964, Shelby American, today a wholly owned subsidiary of Carroll Shelby International Inc. (CSBI:PK) introduced the FIA version of the small block Cobra, which competed in the 1964 World Manufacturers Championship series against marques like Aston Martin, Jaguar and Corvette. To celebrate the birth of the 289 Ford powered roadsters, Shelby American will offer 50 limited edition continuation (CSX70...[Read more...]
Sonoma Historic Motorsports Festival Celebrates Corvette'S 60 Years At Sonoma Raceway
• Fast cars, fine food and wine highlight May 18-19 weekend
• Paul Reinhart is honored guest, popular racing seminar scheduled for second year
SONOMA, Calif. (April 27, 2013) - The Sonoma Historic Motorsports Festival returns to Sonoma Raceway on May 18-19 for the fourth straight year under that title. The program for the 27th annual historic-car event organized by General Racing Ltd. in Sonoma will celebrate the 60th Anniversary of the popular Corvette, created by the ...[Read more...]
Peter Brock and Bob Bondurant to Swap Shelby Stories at Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion
Two stalwart names in the colorful history of Shelby American, Peter Brock and Bob Bondurant, will share some of their stories of those early years at the Picnic with Shelby Cobra Saturday, August 18 at the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion. The 30-minute picnic begins at 12:15 p.m. in the Ford Motor Company display, located at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca's Yamaha Marketplace. Peter Brock was instrumental in Shelby American beginning in 1962. As a young designer, he dove into the entire design...[Read more...]

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1966 Mustang GT350 Image Right1966 Mustang GT350S Prototype Image Right1966 Mustang GT350-R Image Right
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