Why The Ford Mustang Shelby GT500KR Is A Legendary American Muscle Car | Daily News Byte

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There are Ford Mustangs, then there are Shelby Mustangs, then there are Shelby Mustang GT500s, then there are Shelby Mustang GT500KRs. The latter, despite being one of the most exciting and powerful Americans sports cars of classic Mustangs, is still unknown to the public to this day. With a bright future, this legend’s career was relatively short.


What made this model one of the most desirable Mustangs of all time? Well, for starters, it has the same practicality as the previous Shelby Mustang GT500 with power steering, power brakes, air conditioning, functional ram-air scoops, new front and rear ends, a new hood, a functional roll bar, the most powerful engine in a Mustang.

The redesigned front end, rear end, and hood are made of fiberglass to keep weight low. The 7.0-liter (428 cu-in) V8 Cobra Jet engine delivered (according to Ford) 335HP and 440 lb-ft of torque, but some rumors say it delivered 435HP, and Ford Power numbers are underreported. Is the 1968 Ford Shelby Mustang GT500KR really the ‘King of the Road’?

Related: Why We Prefer The 1967 Shelby GT500 Over The 2022 Model


When the Mustang Shelby GT500 Got the Cobra Jet V8

1968 Ford Shelby Mustang GT500KR engine bay view
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The Ford Mustang shook up the automotive world when it was launched in 1964, and Ford sold more than 400,000 units in its first year of existence. However, despite being well received by American audiences, Ford’s General Manager, Lee Iacocca, thought it lacked the image of a ‘powerful’ car. Because of this, the guys at Ford contacted Carroll Shelby for help turning the Mustang into a sports car.

This collaboration resulted in the form of the Shelby Mustang GT500 in 1965. This car threw any preconceived notions people had about Mustang power numbers out the window. In 1967, Ford enlarged the Mustang to accommodate a big-block V8 called the GT500. The 428 cu-in engine in the Mustang Shelby GT500 delivered a mouth-watering power of over 350HP and over 400 lb-ft of torque.

In 1968, things took off when Ford installed a modified version of the same 428 cu-in engine to make the GT500 faster than ever. This machine was called the Cobra Jet, and the name was changed from GT500 to GT500KR – the last two letters meaning ‘King of the Road’.

1968 Ford Shelby Mustang GT500KR front hd wallpaper view
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It has power brakes, power steering, and air conditioner; it can do 0 to 60 miles per hour in less than seven seconds. If this car is also fast by today’s standards, imagine how it felt 50 years ago. The Mustang Shelby GT500KR is a car you can cruise around town on weekdays and race on weekends.

It has a four-speed manual transmission or a three-speed automatic transmission that will deliver power to the rear wheels. Then there are power figures that are shocking. Initially, Ford claimed the GT500KR delivered 335HP and 440lb-ft of power and torque, but the true power figure is believed to be somewhere around 440HP.

The more interesting bit is the fact that the GT500KR can reach its maximum power at lower RPMs compared to other performance cars, which will result in the engine living for longer years and miles without bothering the anyone.

Related: Dennis Collins Hits Five-Car Jackpot With Shelby GT500

What Makes the Mustang Shelby GT500KR So Desirable Now?

1968 Ford Shelby Mustang GT500KR interior view
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Mainly for two reasons: One, It was the last car Shelby and Ford made. And two, only 1,570 were sold to the public, of which 1,053 were fastbacks and 517 were convertibles. Both reasons here make it not only desirable from a gearhead’s point of view but also from a collector’s point of view.

This is one of the rarest and most exclusive cars to own in the automotive world, which is why it won’t come cheap if you can find one. Yes, it may not be as expensive as a 1967 Shelby Mustang GT500 ‘Eleanor’ that made the GT500 something of a cult (which is why some 1967 Shelby Mustang GT500s have sold for close to $1 million), but it’s going to burn pretty big. hole in your pockets.

The 1968 Shelby Mustang GT500′ King of the Road was also the last ‘Cobra’ car from the Shelby-Ford collaboration, as the Shelby-Ford agreement ended in 1969. This also meant that no Shelby Mustangs were produced in 1970 and after. .

Let’s Give The Mustang Shelby GT500KR The Credit It Deserves

1968 Ford Shelby Mustang GT500KR side view
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It’s just sad when people talk about the glorious past of Mustangs of old, and the Shelby Mustang GT500′ King of the Road’ is rarely mentioned. The way ‘Gone in 60 Seconds’ immortalized the 1967 Shelby Mustang GT500 and became a collectible, I hope the 1968 Shelby Mustang GT500KR gets half the appreciation it deserves. Having said that, for those who know about the original Mustang GT500KR, will know that some have sold at auctions for over $250,000.

Well, yes, The GT500KR survives and remains one of the most desirable classic cars out there, but for those who know. The story of this Ford and Shelby built masterpiece known as the Shelby Mustang GT500KR needs to be told

Sources: Ford, Bring a Trailer

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