There have been a lot of “continuation” models lately. Historic cars that are purportedly being built in exactly the same way as they were in the day. But few are built by the same people.
The Original Venice Crew 1965 Shelby GT350 Competition is just such a car. Not only is it being built in almost exactly the same way as it was in 1965, this prototype was built in Peter Brock’s garage and the project is being led by Jim Marietta and Ted Sutton who worked in the shop in the ’60s.
The crew will only be building 36 of these cars, a nod to the 36 Competition models built in ’65. And just like with that car, OVC takes stock ’65 K code Mustangs off the street and tears them down nut by nut, before putting them back together, better than ever.
Powered by an engine based on the 289 block and mated to a 4-speed transmission, this was designed to be as close to identical to the original car as possible.
That said, there are one or two differences, but it’s for good reason. Unlike the original this GT350 comes with independent rear suspension, which is based on the independent rear suspension Shelby was working on in the ‘60s (but that got shelved). Like that test car, it also has 4-wheel disc brakes.
Similarly, the front fascia is a little different. But according to Marietta, it was redesigned by Brock based on drawings he had made when this car was being designed, but which was never put on the original car because Brock was busy in Europe making history.
Then there are some changes aimed at making this a street car: specifically the addition of some mufflers. Fortunately, they can be easily removed at the track and they don’t really hurt the sound too badly.