Shelby American, Inc. will end production of the current generation American muscle car, the Shelby GT350. Shelby American will take new orders for its GT350 through December 31, 2013. Production of all other Shelby performance cars will continue.
“The Shelby GT350 is one of the world’s most celebrated, iconic muscle cars,” said John Luft, president of Shelby American. “The model’s limited production has long been part of its appeal. When this car was unveiled, we promised that the modern version of the Shelby GT350 would be available for a limited run. This decision was made to preserve the Shelby American built GT350’s collectability and value. We’ve been preparing for this day since Shelby American launched this in 2010. In true Carroll Shelby fashion, we’re planning our next ultimate performance Shelby model.”
Shelby American’s approach has always been to first make history and then repeat it. In the 1960’s, Shelby American built the GT350 in small numbers for the 1965, 1966 and 1967 model years, making those cars among the most desirable collectible vehicles on the planet.
“The Shelby GT350’s rich history is well-documented,” said Shelby American Vice President of Production Gary Davis. “People value that heritage and tell us that they want this car to equal that exclusivity. We’re staying true to the commitment made in 2010 to deliver a small block car with high performance, unique styling and collectability in a way that honors Carroll Shelby and our heritage.”
The first (2011) model year 45th Anniversary Shelby GT350’s were all coupes clad in Competition white with Guardsmen blue stripes, just as Shelby American did with the initial car in 1965. In 2012, three more colors (red, blue and anniversary black/gold celebrating 50 years of Shelby American), as well as a convertible option were offered, similar to the options offered by Shelby American in 1966. For the 2013 model year, Shelby American again followed tradition with expanded color options, equipment choices and styling changes, while the performance improvements remained intact.
The concept behind the current GT350 was to build a car that is light, nimble and powerful. Beginning with the “small block” 5.0 liter Ford Mustang GT as its base, every aspect of the car is enhanced or replaced to create the ultimate balanced performance pony car that is true to the spirit of the 1960s era Shelby GT350.
“We’ve taken another page out of the ‘Carroll Shelby playbook’, repeating history once again” said Luft. “Just like in the 1960’s, the modern day Shelby GT350 was launched with the vision of limiting the production each year, as well as the overall run for the model. In the ever evolving automotive market, we’ll continue to adapt to meet customer needs. While we’ll look back on the current GT350 with great love and devotion, as Carroll always said, ‘our favorite car is the next one we build’.”
Orders are now being taken for all 2012 - 2014 model year Shelby American GT350’s through the end of 2013; once 2014 arrives, this chapter of Shelby American history will close. Production will continue on all existing models, including the Shelby GTS, GT500 Super Snake and Shelby 1000, Shelby Raptor muscle truck and hot hatch Shelby Focus ST.