Ford and Shelby American have partnered to create a special car in tribute to Carroll Shelby. The 2013 Shelby GT500 Cobra produces 850 hp, and is meant to honor automotive legend Carroll Shelby, who died on May 10 this year.
Shelby's influence extended to many Ford products, including the GT40 race cars, Cobra road cars, and a range of Mustang performance models. Last summer, he even spent five hours driving prototypes of the 2013 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 during Ford's testing procedures.
"Even at 89 years of age, Carroll was an inspiration to us all," Ford marketing vice president Jim Farley said in a statement.
The tribute car is based on a 2013 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500, but with extensive upgrades provided by Ford Racing and Shelby American. The former contributed a larger, 4.0-liter supercharger that increases the 5.8-liter V-8 engine's output from 662 hp to 850 hp. Shelby American added 20-inch wheels (measuring 13 inches wide in rear), a unique hood, wider rear fenders (with scoops patterned after the ’69-‘70 Shelby Mustang), stronger Wilwood brakes, and Guardsman Blue paint with white racing stripes. That color combination harks back to the original Shelby Cobra muscle cars of the 1960s.
The Carroll Shelby tribute car was revealed today at the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion in Monterey, California. The car will be displayed there this weekend, and then will spend the next year traveling to various events around the country. Ford executive Farley hints that the modified GT500 will eventually be used in "a special way" and references Carroll Shelby's philanthropic efforts, suggesting Ford might eventually auction the car to benefit charity.