Customers who want to take their Shelbys racing have a GT350 option to suit SCCA regulations, as of May 5. A retuned, normally aspirated engine also opens up the six-speed automatic option in the homage to the icon. And all this can be had for about $7,000 less than the original 2011 GT350.
Although many potential buyers of the latest Shelby boutique build had racing on their minds, Sports Car Club of America rules are fairly direct in disallowing bolt-on power adders like the Whipple supercharger found under the hood when Shelby first unveiled the car. That blower is tough on automatic transmissions, too, so none was initially offered. Those days are done.
“When we brought back the GT350, people wanted to race it like they did with our Shelby GT,” said Shelby American Founder Carroll Shelby. “Others asked for an automatic transmission. So we’re dropping the supercharger, retuning the engine and adding an automatic. This gives people more choices with the GT350.”
One of the goals for the Shelby GT350 is SCCA eligiblity, much like the 2007-2008 Shelby GT. Those piloting a Shelby GT dominated the top spots in both the women’s and men’s F stock class last year, with Sam Strano capturing the national championship.
“The GT350 is a street car that is perfect for track day and solo racing activities,” added John Luft, Shelby president. “Beginning with the small block Ford Mustang GT, we worked with Ford Racing, Borla, Goodyear and Baer to create a car that should be competitive right out of the box.”
The GT350 is an enthusiast’s dream. It is powered by the 5.0-liter V-8 coupled to a 6-speed transmission. The front calipers are Shelby 6-piston and 14” rotors with Eradispeed rotors on the back and cooling ducts for all four corners. The suspension features new Ford Racing springs, struts, sway bars and adjustable caster/camber plates. The Goodyear 19” tires are a new, aggressive compound.
Each GT350 will be clad in traditional white with Shelby Guardsman blue Le Mans stripes. The car also receives a new front fascia, tail light trim, front splitter, rear deck lid filler panel and rear fascia. Functional scoops are located on the side rockers and hood. GT350 badges on the outside and inside include a Shelby serial number.
“We plan to have development finished and begin building normally aspirated versions of the GT350 by late summer,” said Shelby American vice-president of production Gary Davis. “This ensures that the car will be fully sorted and ready for fun on the street or track.”
The Shelby GT350 is a post-title program based on the new Ford Mustang GT. A customer purchases a car from a local Ford dealer, which is turned into a GT350 by the Shelby American Team. A limited number will be built in the 2011 model year. A Ford Mustang GT can be dropped shipped by a Ford dealer to Shelby’s Las Vegas facility for conversion or a customer can arrange to have a properly specified car transported to the factory.
The price for the normally aspirated GT350 upfit package is $26,995 plus any options, not including the base Ford Mustang GT. The supercharged version of the GT350 package has a MSRP of $33,995 and does not include the price of the base car.
Customers interested in either a supercharged or normally aspirated GT350 should call (702) 942-7325 or log onto gt350.shelbyamerican.com.