Looking to suitably honor the memory of one of the most influential names in the world of automotive performance, a group known as Friends of Carroll Shelby has created a unique ultra-spec one-off version of the 2013 Shelby GT500. This tribute to Shelby, who died in May, was unveiled over the weekend at the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca where his legendary Cobra marque was celebrating its 50th birthday by serving as the featured nameplate. Ford Motor Company board member Edsel Ford II, Ford's group vice president for sales and marketing Jim Farley, and Shelby American president John Luft were all on hand to officiate at the bittersweet public reveal.
Representing a collaborative effort between Ford Motor Company and Shelby American, this ultimate 2013 Shelby GT500 Cobra is finished in historic Guardsman Blue with Wimbledon White contrast striping. It's fitted with a Shelby American custom hood and rear wide-body kit, Shelby Wilwood high-performance brakes and a bespoke 20-inch wheel/tire package. Kicking the accelerative potential from stunning to absolutely unreal is a Ford Racing 4.0-liter Whipple supercharger that ups the pony count of the GT500's standard 5.8-liter blown V8 from 662 to over 850.
"Carroll Shelby changed the performance world forever," noted Luft. "And while he was proud of Shelby American's achievements, Carroll was far more interested in the next car we would build. You will find the spirit and influence of Carroll Shelby in every future vehicle we build just as you'll find it in the rear wide-body kit and hood integrated into the 2013 Shelby GT500 Cobra."
Farley was equally glowing in his praise for the man -- and his commitment to see that the Shelby legacy will not end with his passing. "Even at 89 years of age, Carroll was an inspiration to us all. This year marks the 50th anniversary of the original Shelby Cobra. The one-off car we have created represents the very idea he had about making the 2013 Shelby GT500 into a true Cobra. Sadly, Carroll Shelby is no longer with us, but his spirit lives on with the designers and engineers he interacted with over the years and he will continue to influence Ford performance cars for many years to come. You might also know that Carroll was a philanthropist, noted for supporting causes that moved him. In that spirit, this car will be taken on tour around the country, and hopefully will be used in a special way at the end of its tour -- a way Carroll would appreciate."