Serial number SFM5R538 is confirmed as one of just 34 “production” G.T.350R models built by Shelby American in 1965 for racing, which then became the winningest Shelby of any kind on record. All images courtesy of Mecum Auctions.
There are Mustangs, and then there are Shelby Mustangs. But even within that rarified subset of Ford’s pony car, there are special examples that stand out among the herd, such as the car pictured above: A 1965 Shelby G.T.350R that is almost certainly the winningest Shelby of any type ever created. It’s one of many vehicles of special distinction going up for sale during this year’s Monterey Car Week – simply known as either Monterey among vintage vehicle enthusiasts, or Pebble Beach due to the renowned concours d’elegance that anchors the festivities. This particular car will be presented to bidders by Wisconsin-based Mecum Auctions at the company’s usual Monterey location, at the Hyatt Regency Hotel and Spa – Del Monte Golf Course.
Like most early Shelby-built Mustangs, this one is known by its serial number, SFM5R538. Shelby American Automobile Club (SAAC) documents confirmed that its legacy began as an order from Shelby American to Ford Motor Company in March 1965. The basic Mustang’s construction commenced at the San Jose assembly line the following month. Delivered first to the Shelby team, it was assigned Work Order No. 17535, which converted the early pony into a G.T.350R, a process that stretched nearly six months
The conversion to race-ready B/Production trim meant this G.T.350R was equipped with an independent front suspension, with adjustable coil springs and front disc brakes, as well as a live-axle rear suspension with leaf springs. Cooling for the all-important brake system was achieved in part by a special fiberglass front body apron and rear ductwork. A set of American Racing magnesium Torq Thrust wheels allowed for the use of pavement-gripping, wider-than-stock competition tires. Additionally, the incorporation of plexiglass windows aided both safety and weight. Power was derived from a Hi-Po 289-cu.in. V-8 engine fitted with a special 715-cfm Holley four-barrel carburetor on a counter-accessory Cobra high-rise intake manifold. Completing the engine build were Tri-Y headers, an external oil cooler, and a high-capacity Ford radiator. Behind the engine sat a Borg-Warner T-10 four-speed manual transmission.
If you’re in the market for a prewar hot rod, Mecum’s Indianapolis auction running May 14–22 has something from just about every era you could desire. While the cars themselves were built before WWII, the different eras of customization really kicked off after the war. If you prefer your ’32 Fords and Model A coupes, roadsters, cabriolets, and sedans more in the factory flavor, Mecum has those as well. For now, let’s take a look at a 9 varieties of custom builds that trace a timeline of hot rod design.
Perhaps you’re looking for something simple with a unique pedigree. In that case, this 1927 Ford Model T track roadster might suit you. This racing roadster was built in the vein of the ’40s and ’50s racers that plied dirt tracks all over Southern California and comes from the collection of road-racing phenom Parnelli Jones. It’s powered by a 304-cubic-inch Ford flathead V-8 wearing a set of aluminum heads. It tuns on alcohol and turns the tires by way of a three-speed manual trans.
For those who would like a leg up on their hot-rod build but still want some say in the final product, this handsome, black 1932 Ford roadster has much of the hardest work already done. The subtle modifications and vintage speed parts give it a traditional 1950s hot-rod look. The Ford flathead has a 4 inch-stroke crank, likely compliments of a Mercury. It’s topped by a set of Smith heads and uses an Isky cam to breathe through a twin-carb Eddie Meyer intake and gorgeous Eddie Meyer air cleaner. Inside, the dash is filled with a full complement of Stewart Warner gauges. It doesn’t get much more iconic in the world of hot rods than a ’32 Roadster, and this one is built with a fantastic collection of vintage components.
A massive 100+ car barn find collection in Chicago, IL that I photographed for Mecum Auctions. Inside the building was dozens of amazing finds. So many Shelby Mustangs, Z28 Camaros, even a couple Rolls Royce cars were stashed inside and forgotten about. This video shows a good majority of the cars that were present but from what I was told there were additional cars elsewhere that I didn’t get to see.
Everyone said it would set the new record for Mustangs and possibly muscle cars alike. The Steve McQueen Bullitt Mustang GT certainly raised the bar for Mustangs. At the end of the bidding the hammer price of $3.4 Million not only broke records, but wowed the throngs of spectators that crowded the Osceola Heritage Park Hall in Kissimmee, Florida. There’s been a lot of speculation. Now we know.
The pricey 1968 Highland Green GT was walked in like a prizefighter. Known as the the “hero” car used in filming. It was used for closeups and driving scenes, while an identical Mustang was setup as a stunt car. That stunt car was essentially wrecked from an arduous schedule of “gags” on set.
Bullitt Mustang to be Sold in January 2020 Despite Won’t Sell Pledge
Despite stating previously that the it would never be sold (Detroit Free Press Story) Sean Kiernan will be putting the famous Bullitt Mustang will be up for sale at Mecum Auctions in January 2020
The “Bullitt” Mustang, a 1968 fastback, as shown at the 2018 North American International Auto Show. Photo by Ronan Glon.
The Highland Green 1968 Mustang fastback that starred alongside Steve McQueen in Bullitt is, quite possibly, the most-recognized Ford Mustang on the planet, despite spending decades in the shadows. After returning to the spotlight in 2018, the car has made appearances at auto shows, museums, concours d’elegance events, and even on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. The BullittMustang has been in the Kiernan family since 1974, but next January may well become the most expensive Mustang ever sold at auction when it crosses the stage during Mecum’s Kissimmee, Florida, sale.
It was Harley Earl that sold GM on the need to produce an all-American sports car, and to test the waters, his Special Projects team created the EX-122 concept for display at the 1953 Motorama display in New York City. Less than six months later, the car – now named the Corvette – was in production, hand-built by a team of workers in Flint, Michigan. Just 300 examples were built that year, and this August, chassis E53F001300, the final 1953 Corvette built, heads to auction at Mecum’s Monterey sale.
This trio of Mopar display engines, owned by Steven Juliano, head to auction next month in Indianapolis. Photos courtesy Mecum Auctions.
Once upon a time, auto shows were important events for manufacturers, giving them a venue to reveal their latest models — and latest technology — to an eager buying public. Display engines were a part of this, giving the average person a passing understanding of the internal combustion dark arts, while teasing enthusiasts with the latest high-output options. On Friday, May 17, a trio of Mopar display engines from the Steven Juliano Collection will head to auction in Indianapolis, giving buyers an opportunity to own a unique piece of Chrysler high-performance history.
In the early years of the 21st century, concept cars were still an essential component of an automaker’s portfolio. In 2001 alone, Ford debuted such memorable show cars as the retro-themed Forty-Nine, the Urban Explorer, the Explorer Sportsman, and the F150 Lightning Rod. None, however, was more audacious than Ford’s shot across the Jeep Wrangler’s bow, the go-anywhere EX off-roader. On March 16, the drivable-but-not-road-legal 2001 Ford EX Concept crosses the block in Phoenix, Arizona, part of Mecum’s upcoming four-day sale.
’63 coupe and ’64 convertible created by and for GM styling leaders
The 1963 Chevrolet Corvette Sting Ray convertible built for Harley Earl and the ’64 Corvette Sting Ray coupe created for his successor, Bill Mitchell, will be offered as a single lot at Mecum Auctions’ Kissimmee, Florida, sale scheduled for January 3-13, 2019.
“This is a singularly historic offering of two of the most significant one-off Corvettes in the model’s history, owned and driven by the two most influential and fascinating figures of the automotive design industry,” Mecum Auctions said in revealing the consignment.