Unveiling the Iconic 1967 Shelby Ford Mustang GT500 Fastback: A Muscle Car Legend

In the realm of classic muscle cars, one name stands tall and proud: the 1967 Shelby Ford Mustang GT500 Fastback. This automotive masterpiece is not just a car; it’s a symbol of power, speed, and American engineering excellence. Let’s dive into the heart of this legendary machine, its history, and what makes it a timeless icon on wheels.

Shelby’s Racing Pedigree Meets Mustang Magic

The 1960s marked a defining era for American racing, and no name was more synonymous with victory than Carroll Shelby. Having achieved remarkable success with Ford’s Mustang ‘pony car,’ Shelby’s team secured the SCCA’s B-Production title for three consecutive years. Harnessing this triumph, Shelby took a daring leap into manufacturing modified Mustangs, a venture that would forever change the automotive landscape.

The Birth of a Legend: 1965 GT350

The stage was set for the debut of the first-ever Shelby Mustang: the GT350. Arriving in 1965, this marvel was propelled by a modified version of Ford’s 289ci V8 engine, churning out an impressive 306 horsepower. For those seeking an extra adrenaline rush, options included a competition-ready 340-360 horsepower unit or a supercharged 400 horsepower beast. The stock transmission was a four-speed Borg-Warner manual gearbox, but a heavy-duty three-speed automatic quickly joined the options list.

The GT350 wasn’t just about raw power; the running gear was meticulously upgraded to accommodate the increased performance. Featuring Kelsey-Hayes front disc brakes, a fortified Ford Galaxie rear axle, Koni adjustable shock absorbers, and sleek alloy wheels, the GT350 redefined driving dynamics. Interestingly, early GT350s sported only two seats, solidifying its status as a two-seat sports car.

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Evolution to Excellence: 1967 GT500

In 1967, as Ford introduced the 390ci ‘big-block’ V8, Shelby took it up a notch. The result was the awe-inspiring GT500, a true muscle car icon. Boasting Ford’s 428ci Cobra Jet V8 engine, generating an astonishing 7.0 liters of displacement, the GT500 roared onto the scene. Manufactured at the A O Smith Company’s Michigan plant starting in 1968, the Shelby Mustang retained its distinctive features while incorporating the stock model’s mechanical enhancements and styling changes, a legacy that persisted until 1970.

The Impeccable ’67 GT500 Fastback – Chassis Number ‘2173’

Stepping into the realm of collectible classics, chassis number ‘2173’ represents a rarity among rarities. Among the limited production of 2,048 Shelby GT500 fastback coup├ęs for the 1967 model year, this gem shone bright in ‘Candyapple Red’ with a sleek black interior. Delivered with an impressive array of factory-fitted options, including power steering, power front disc brakes, a fold-down rear seat, and more, ‘2173’ embodies luxury and performance in perfect harmony.

Under the hood, the heartbeat of this masterpiece was the 428ci ‘Police Interceptor’ V8 engine, harmonizing with a four-speed manual gearbox. Its journey began in Detroit in August 1967, a time marked by civil unrest. Undeterred, the Mustang embarked on a journey that would become a part of its rich history.

A Remarkable Restoration: Reviving Glory

Having journeyed through decades, ‘2173’ eventually found itself in the hands of experts who recognized its true worth. In 2005/2006, a no-expense-spared restoration transformed the car into a work of art. Every component underwent meticulous restoration, with ex-Aston Martin panel beaters leading the bodyshell repairs, ensuring a return to its original glory.

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The transformation was thorough and uncompromising. Every steel part underwent a process of cleaning, priming, and powder-coating, staying true to the original factory methods. The result was a bodyshell that faithfully replicated its initial construction, boasting a finish that merged authenticity with longevity. From nuts and bolts to interior trims, no detail was too small to escape restoration.

Power Refined: The Heart Beneath the Hood

As part of the restoration, ‘2173’ received a heart transplant in the form of a rebuilt engine. Knight Racing Services undertook the task, expanding the engine’s capacity to an impressive 462ci (7.6 liters). This enhancement, while maintaining the engine’s original appearance, translated into a staggering 425 horsepower and a jaw-dropping 525 lbs/ft of torque. The symphony of power and performance that ensued is a testament to the dedication and craftsmanship poured into every inch of this automotive legend.

Resurrected Glory: A Future with a Glorious Past

With fewer than 1,000 miles added since its revival, ‘2173’ stands as a testament to the dedication of those who resurrected it. Its odometer reading of 76,878 miles paints a picture of a storied past intertwined with a vibrant present. Fully restored to its former glory, this rare GT500 boasts not only its Marti report and Certificate of Title but also the admiration of enthusiasts worldwide.

The 1967 Shelby Ford Mustang GT500 Fastback is more than a car; it’s an embodiment of an era, a symbol of innovation, and a timeless icon that continues to captivate hearts across generations. In its every curve, every roar of its engine, and every ounce of power it exudes, the legacy of Shelby and Ford lives on.

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Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is the significance of the GT500 in automotive history? The GT500 holds immense significance as a legendary muscle car that symbolizes the collaboration between Carroll Shelby and Ford, creating an icon that defined an era of high-performance automobiles.

2. How did the GT500 evolve from the GT350? While the GT350 laid the foundation, the GT500 took it further with a more powerful 428ci Cobra Jet V8 engine, cementing its place as a true muscle car with remarkable speed and performance.

3. What made ‘2173’ a standout among GT500s? Chassis number ‘2173’ is among a limited production run, boasting meticulous restoration, a powerful rebuilt engine, and a history that adds to its allure.

4. How was the restoration of ‘2173’ carried out? The restoration of ‘2173’ was a meticulous process involving ex-Aston Martin panel beaters, thorough bodyshell repairs, and a commitment to replicating the original factory methods.

5. What power output does the rebuilt engine in ‘2173’ offer? Following the restoration, ‘2173’ now commands a remarkable 425 horsepower with an impressive 525 lbs/ft of torque, translating to a thrilling driving experience.