Motoring News

Special Shelby Mustang – how does R4.4m grab you?

SHELBY MUSTANG ‘KING OF THE ROAD. Image: Ford America

Limited run of 225 for buyers globally

• GT500-based Shelby upgrades suit track driving

• Each unit documented in official Shelby Registry

PRETORIA, South Africa – The Shelby Mustang King of the Road is one of the most famous models to bear the Shelby name and is making a return this year to honour the company’s 60th anniversary.

A limited run of 225 – globally – is under way and Shelby South Africa has commissioned four for delivery through 2023/2024 as part of the local allocation. Shelby SA has already sold one of the units to be assembled at a Shelby-approved modshop in the Western Cape.

Doreen Mashinini, marketing general manager Ford SA, told The Corner: “Customers looking for the latest in personal expression and power will be rewarded by what the latest GT500KR has to offer. It’s the first exclusive model available to Mustang enthusiasts in South Africa and epitomises everything Carroll Shelby stood for.”

A TOUCH OF HISTORY

Shelby was often called the ‘King of the Road’ for his ability to push the performance envelope and this is only the third time that a Shelby GT500 has carried the King of the Road name.

The first was in 1968 when the Shelby GT500KR was powered by a 428 Cobra Jet V8 conservatively rated at 250kW and with a modified suspension, redesigned nose andtail, custom glass-fibre bonnet and Thunderbird tail-lights. Added was roll bar and wood-rimmed steering wheel.

The cars were offered as fastback or convertible and Ford dealers sold 1570 in 1968 – 1053 fastbacks, 517 convertibles.

Next came 2008 when Ford and Shelby brought back the GT500KR. Its supercharged V8 produced 402kW (30kW more than the standard GT500) and added a short-throw shifter, 3.73:1 rear axle, unique wheels/tyres, and a tweaked suspension.

SHARPER LOOKS, BETTER HANDLING

A special composite bonnet with push-button pins, unique stripes and badges, distinguished this KR. 1000 were assembled that year and demand was so great that Ford and Shelby agreed to build another 712 for 2009.

This third generation of the GT500KR – and the first with right-hand drive Mustang – lives up to its KR badge by increasing power to about 670kW and sharpening looks and handling. “The combination,” Ford says, ”created the most extreme and refined Shelby KR to date – and placed a stronger emphasis on track racing than the standard Shelby GT500.

Peter Lindenberg, CEO of Shelby SA, informed The Corner that the KR was probably the most unique of all Shelbys available in SA because of the extremely limited numbers and power. “The GT500KR’s performance figures are unsurpassed for a rear-wheel drive muscle car.

“This is a long-awaited Shelby for the SA market and inquiries for the GT350 and GT500 have been extraordinary.” 

ANNIVERSARY BADGEING

“The supercharger and coolers on the 5.2-litre V8 have added 105kW to total about 670kW. If that doesn’t grab your attention then the light carbon-fibre bonnet that shaves 14kg off the car, the new alloy wheel-rims design certainly will. Cornering agility has also improved thanks to a revised suspension and sportier sway bars.”

The cabin carries unique anniversary badging and each car will bring membership of Team Shelby, the worldwide club Carroll Shelby established in 2008. Every vehicle will be documented in the official Shelby Registry with other rare Shelbys such as the recently unveiled Shelby Speedster.

ESTIMATED PRICE IN SOUTH AFRICA: Shelby King of the Road: R4.4-million, including VAT.

SHELBY MUSTANG ‘KING OF THE ROAD. Image: Ford America
SHELBY MUSTANG ‘KING OF THE ROAD. Image: Ford America

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