The new Fod Mustang GT350R is currently proving the to the world it’s one of the finest sports cars for the money. Yet every time I hear the name all I can think back to is the glory days of Shelby American. Amazingly the time has come where you can buy a true 1965 Shelby GT350R in ‘new’ condition.
In an unlikely turn of events, Carol Shelby’s original dream team has aligned to bring back one of the greatest cars from the 60’s. Pete Brock, Jim Marietta, and Ted Sutton have agreed to partner up with a goal of producing 36 unique 1965 GT350R’s. That’s right, they are producing 1965 GT350R’s, in 2017. What a time to be alive.
Under the banner of ‘The Original Venice Crew,’ the group will be doing what they did in 1965, but now only a little bit better. First, they will be finding exquisite examples of the Mustang from 1965. Then they will take that donor car and transform it into the car we know and love. That means a Shelby sourced 289 iron block, tastefully modified like the track cars of old. That will then be mated to a period correct 4-speed transmission. While your new GT350R is cranking out an absurd 526hp, this retro re-creation will come up about 200 south of that.
What makes these new GT350R’s interesting is the fact that they are no longer limited by design. Pete Brock is the man credited with creating some of the most amazing cars in history, including the Shelby Daytona Coupe. But his work on the famed GT350 is still noteworthy. In his time he never got a chance to fully explore the capabilities of his design on the GT, and now he has a chance to do that. The Venice Crew plans on incorporating some of Pete’s original 1965 prototype designs, because they can. The upgrades consist of a new front valance and a slew of changes to the plexiglass windows. Pete says, “The revised shape of the window improves the car’s interior aerodynamics by promoting better airflow for driver comfort. The new front valance has a much closer identity with the original Mustang front-end while increasing the efficiency of airflow to cool the engine.” Considering his track record I would be inclined to trust his judgment.
The team also plans on incorporating an independent suspension design that Ford built in 1964. Once again, period correct and still somehow better, fascinating. “While these changes may look subtle, they combine with the new suspension to dramatically change the character of the car,” Brock said of all the changes.
While you can get your hands on a 2017/2018 GT350R for around $70,000 you would be hard pressed not to get one of these instead. Although they are going to run you an extra $180,000 for your troubles. But then again, you will be one of 36 people in the world to have such an amazing machine. And why 36 you may be asking? Because that’s how many of the original GT350R’s were made. A tribute doesn’t get better than this. You better get your bid in now though, the Venice Crew plans on beginning production this fall. It’s been a long time coming, but it’s finally happening.