Sold for $110,000
In mid-1968, Shelby American packed a larger, mildly modified Police Interceptor 428-cid V-8 into the pony car’s engine bay, establishing the creation of the legendary GT 500. This new Shelby was conservatively rated at 360 horsepower. In fact, it has been long-thought that its actual output was closer to 400, accompanied by loads of road-blackening torque. This engine, originally developed by Rhode Island’s Tasca Ford upon the suggestion of Hot Rod Magazine, included a pair of 427 low-riser cylinder heads, a 735-cfm Holley carburetor and many subtle improvements courtesy of the Ford parts bin. The resulting Cobra Jet was immediately recognized as a strong and reliable performer, which was vastly under-reported at 335 horsepower, but capably powered the increasingly upscale GT 500 through its final year in 1970.
The 1969 Shelby conveys what many felt to be the most elegant styling of the 1969 to 1973 Mustang era. Carroll Shelby ensured that the GT 500 retained its unique Shelby identity, and for 1969, it incorporated a longer fiberglass front end, a unique grille, a revised taillight and exhaust treatment, as well as an aggressive hood with five NACA-style air scoops. Inside, a rollbar, inertia-reel racing harnesses, luxurious features and special trim maintained the performance-oriented, limited-production character of the GT 500. Its racecar-inspired styling continued to make it immediately stand apart from the regular, still very handsome Mustang straight from the local Ford dealership.
During the combined 1969-1970 model years, only 1,536 total Shelby GT 500 Fastbacks were produced, contributing to make this a very special and uncommon machine. With an outstanding restoration in 2011 by the prominent group of specialists at Cobra Automotive, this 1969 GT 500 is presented in the rare combination of Black Jade with a White interior and is well-documented as being one of 132 examples with this paint/trim code formula. The car also has white side stripes that are color-coordinated with the interior, and it runs with the renowned 428-cid, 335-hp V-8 4V Cobra Jet Ram Air engine with a Holley 750-cfm carburetor and 428 Cobra Jet Ram Air aluminum valve covers. This impressive and powerful package is connected to a desirable four-speed close-ratio manual transmission and a Traction-Lok 3.50:1 axle group. The engine is documented with balance, blueprint and dynamometer results that confirm its strength.
The 1969 Shelby utilized a Deluxe Mustang interior; this example is well-equipped with the Sport Deck rear seat, AM/FM radio, Visibility Group, deluxe seatbelts, warning light, oil pressure and ammeter gauges, Shelby center console, woodgrain trim on the dash and door panels, clock, driver’s side remote mirror; power steering and brakes with front discs. Factory MagStar 15x7 wheels are fitted with Goodyear Super Wide Oval E70x15 Polyglas GT tires.
This GT 500 is exceptional throughout; among the rare documentation for this Shelby GT 500 includes the 1969 GT 350 / GT 500 individual (pink Shelby distribution) order, the two sales orders (#3122) when the car was sold to Larry Lange Ford in Cedar Falls, Iowa. Also accompanying the car is a Deluxe Marti Report and 1969 magazine advertising for the brand. The car is likewise accounted for in the Shelby Registry. Like every GT 500, it benefits from the inherent collectability and performance associated with the Shelby name itself and, above all, the tremendous value of being part of this exclusive fraternity.