Jerry Heasley
September 1, 2008

The upgrades begin with the engine, including a cold-air inlet, a blower pulley tune, long-tube headers, and engine programming to push the horsepower into the 650-665 range. RSC also orders serious suspension upgrades, which equate to a full Steeda G-Trac suspension upgrade. "We do the performance upgrades, then trailer the Shelby back to Retrobuilt International in Missouri," says Will. "They go buck-wild with it there for 3-4 weeks getting the body done."

Tony says, "I create the renderings of what I want, and then Retrobuilt turns those over to Branson Machine in Branson, Missouri." On the rear fascia, for example, Branson Machine scans the trunk lid and taillights of the stock car, then mills out a big chunk of aluminum for that flat panel. "It's quite involved and rather pricy," Tony admits. Next, Retrobuilt sends the reskinned Shelby back to Car FX for the final suspension tuning and ride-height adjustment.

Since Shelby Automobiles owns the rights to the GT500KR name, Retrobuilt can't sell a GT500KR, and it can't offer a kit for it, either. Of course, since the company started with a GT 500, there's no issue using the name "GT 500." Anybody can modify a one. "We don't provide any badges," Tony says. "The buyer can use whatever decals, letters, or stickers he or she wants. We just can't do it."

Apparently, the "KR" after the GT 500 on the front fenders is a customer add-on-ditto for the doorsill plates. Overall, the end result is a high-dollar, modified Shelby GT 500 that pays a 21st century tribute to the original '681/2 GT500KR in terms of more horsepower and improved handling. What other modified '07 Shelby GT 500 has a chrome front bumper and sheetmetal sourced straight from a '68 model of the glory years?