Take a Mustang, heat up the engine, mix with an artfully race-tuned chassis, then add more "competition" features inside and out. That was Carroll Shelby's recipe for turning Ford's new low-priced "ponycar" into a credible track performer. The result was more than credible, as Shelby's GT-350 Mustangs won most every sports-car race around in 1965-66.
Yet the no-compromise flavor of those first fastbacks was quickly watered down with extra size and fluff. The restyled '67 GT-350 was not only heavier but gained a burly big-engine brother, the GT-500.
The 1969 Shelby GT-500 boasted a 428-cubic-inch V-8.
See more pictures of the Shelby Mustang.
The 1969 Shelby GT-500 remain a rare classic convertible.
The following year introduced convertible versions of both. By 1969, the Shelby GTs were just limited-production custom Mustangs. They were even built by Ford.
Still, a '69 GT-500 turned heads like nothing else, and though its 428-cubic-inch V-8 was available in Mustangs, it made at least 65 more horsepower in Shelbys, a mighty 400 advertised. But this tasty confection cost a steep $5027, so only 335 ragtop 500s were sold for '69, plus a spoonful of reserialed "1970" models. The GT-350 was even scarcer at only 194, plus a dollop of carryovers. It was the last of a great line.
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