There have been few people on this planet that have made such an impact on the automotive racing and design world than legend Carroll Shelby. Now well into his 80’s, Carroll continues fueling his passion for high performance automobiles. Carroll Shelby starting out racing back in the 1950’s and he was hooked from that point on. After retiring from the racing scene in 1959, he took his passion for high performance and turned it to building cars under the Shelby American name.
The first incredibly successful car built was the AC Cobra, which remains one of the most sought after vehicles ever produced. To build this car Carroll Shelby took the British AC Ace and combined it with a Ford V8 engine to produce a fast little convertible roadster. Although at the time, the Shelby Cobra was not a financially viable car to produce, it Only 1003 Shelby Cobra’s were every built and shipped throughout the world between 1965-1970.
Shelby was also very busy assisting other car companies in making high-performance versions of cars that they were already producing. Many people will remember the Shelby Mustangs of the 1960’s. These cars were the joint effort of Shelby and Ford to produce a unique, higher performance Mustang than was previously available by Ford alone. The two Mustangs that were produced from this project were the Shelby GT500 and the Shelby GT350. This relationship with Shelby and the Ford Mustang is still in existence today and a Shelby Mustang.
In the 1980’s Shelby went on to help Chrysler in turning around from several years of poor economic performance. With the help of Carroll Shelby, they went on to build a few successful models.
In 1999 Shelby Automobiles went in a different direction and designed a car on it’s own from the ground up. This resulted in the Shelby Series 1 which is an incredible performance sports car. Only 249 of these cars were ever produced, making them a rare find.
Another car that has taken the world by storm is the Shelby SSC Ultimate Aero, which is created by a company called Shelby Super Cars. This company, is named after it’s owner, Jerod Shelby, who is no relation to Carroll Shelby. This supercar is an example of American engineering. The SSC Ultimate Aero recently was named the faster production car by the Guinness Book of Records. Surprisingly, this fast car uses a V8 engine to produce over 1000hp. With everything that this car has to offer in terms of performance, it’s a bargain. Comparable only to the Bugatti Veyron, this car is about half the cost of the Veyron – about $600,000 U.S.
The Shelby name is synonymous with performance automobiles, whether the the Shelby Super Cars (SCC) or the original Shelby American. If you have the chance to own one of these magnificent cars, take full advantage of it! The Shelby name will live on in American automotive history.