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Shelby G.T. 350 #1 (and more) To Cross the Block in Scottsdale
Cars to pay attention to at the upcoming Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale (Arizona) auction
In the automotive auction universe, likely the most pomp and circumstance revolves around the annual Barrett-Jackson auction in Scottsdale, Arizona. While a bunch of other high-end auctions are going on around town the same week—Mecum, Russo & Steele, and more—the place to go for muscle cars and hot rods is B-J, and this year there will be some notable Mustangs set to cross the block.
January 13-21, 2018 will be the 47th annual Scottsdale auction at WestWorld of Scottsdale and many of the most desirable Ford collectibles representing Ford’s performance heritage on both the street and track will be up for sale, including a 1966 Shelby GT 350 Prototype #001 (Lot #1406).
“For well over a century, Ford has been unique among automakers,” said Craig Jackson, chairman and CEO of Barrett-Jackson. “By providing transportation for the masses, it helped transform America. As our country’s transportation model changed, Ford was an integral part of creating the automotive enthusiast. The passion of those enthusiasts will be on display with the vast selection of Fords offered this year at Scottsdale. Bringing such a spectacular and diverse docket under one roof that spans more than a million square feet of space will make for an unforgettable 2018 Scottsdale Auction.”
Virtually any Ford provides a historical narrative. Few, however, supply the storyline of the Shelby G.T. 350 Prototype #001 (Lot #1406). It represents the first step in what would quickly become Ford’s dragon slayer, forging a competition history that forever set the Mustang apart from the pony cars that would come after. Another notable Mustang on the docket is a 1969 Mustang Q-Code 482 Cobra Jet Convertible (Lot #1420), one of just 20 built in 1969 with a 4-speed manual transmission and one of just 50 with the 428 CJ non-Ram Air engine. Also set to cross the block is a 1955 Ford Thunderbird Custom Convertible (Lot #1417) that was a 2012 Detroit Autorama Ridler Award winner and features a Gale Banks Engineering twin-turbo engine with over 1,150hp and 900 ft/lbs of torque.
The hottest new Ford in showrooms (some lucky dealers’ showrooms that is) is the GT supercar, but if you can neither afford the half-million-dollar price tag nor be “chosen” to buy one, there will be some previous generation GTs up for sale at Barrett as well. These include a 2006 Ford GT Heritage Edition (Lot #1414) that is one of only 343 Heritage Editions produced; another 2006 GT, Lot #1372, that is finished in Tungsten Grey and, with just over 650 actual miles, has been immaculately kept with long-term ownership by Ford racing legend Bill Kolb Jr.; a 2005 GT (Lot #1425.1) that is finished in Mark IV Red and is one of just 2,027 produced in 2005, with just under 4,000 actual miles.
“Almost everyone can make a connection with a Ford vehicle,” said Steve Davis, president of Barrett-Jackson. “With classic Fords from the ’30s and ’40s to the hottest Mustangs and trucks, our selection of collectible Fords truly offers something for every enthusiast. I’m thrilled that our 2018 Scottsdale Auction will provide a historic combination of Ford’s tremendous past, along with the incredible GTs set to cross the block that represent the peak of modern-era Ford Performance.”
Here’s what B-J has to say about the prototype Shelby: “Chassis #SFM6S001 is a historic pre-production prototype. The very first 1966 Shelby G.T. 350 built, it is documented in the SAAC Shelby American World Registry. It’s powered by a matching-numbers high-performance 289ci V8 engine and 4-speed T10 manual transmission. Conceived and built to homologate Ford’s wildly successful Mustang for SCCA competition, Carroll Shelby’s original G.T. 350 exemplified Ford’s “total performance” mantra and conferred an unbeatable image on the trendsetting new Pony car. While all surviving G.T. 350s are indeed special, SFM6S001, the car offered here, is particularly important as the pre-production prototype and very first Shelby G.T. 350 built for 1966. A primary Shelby American test car used for most of the driving tests for the 1966 G.T. 350 development program, it was also used to evaluate a vinyl roof treatment, which was ultimately not released for sale. This G.T. 350 was also shown by Shelby American and depicted in Shelby American brochures and marketing for 1966.
Unlike the regular production G.T. 350s, SFM6S001 was not a “delete” car from Ford that was later upgraded to G.T. 350 spec by Shelby American. Rather, it began life as a factory-standard, Wimbledon White K-code high-performance 1965 Ford Mustang Fastback, with all factory-standard features remaining with this car. Among them were the welded export brace brackets, and all the welded/filled holes in the body panels for the standard Mustang emblems and body moldings that were removed during the Mustang’s conversion into the first ’66 G.T. 350. In addition, SFM6S001 is the only Shelby G.T. 350 to have been originally equipped with the upscale, factory-optional Pony upholstery available with regular Mustangs. Other fascinating features of SFM6S001 include aluminum inside rear-quarter window trim and the fittings for the rear-brake cooling ductwork. Late in its Shelby American days—during the last two or three weeks there—SFM6S001 was sent to ACME Auto Headlining in Long Beach, CA, and fitted with a Medium Blue vinyl top, which was briefly considered as a potential factory-available option for 1966.
According to the Shelby American World Registry, SFM6S001 was shipped to California’s Hayward Motors for use as a demonstrator on May 17, 1966. Circa 1968, it was purchased by its first owner, a resident of the San Jose, CA, area. In 1971, Oakland, California’s Jack Schroll purchased the Shelby, still sporting the blue vinyl top, and he would go on to retain the car until early 2004. During Mr. Schroll’s tenure, the car was displayed as a painted rolling chassis at the 1976 SAAC-1 meeting in Oakland, CA, and he kept it in storage until 1998. In 2011, a complete restoration was commissioned to as-new, original delivery condition, including a Medium Blue vinyl top as it received prior to the first owner taking ownership of the car from Shelby.
Of particular note, SAAC 1966 Shelby Judge John Brown of Piedmont, Oklahoma, played an instrumental role in ensuring the correctness and authenticity of this historic G.T. 350’s restoration. In confirmation of the enduring excellence of the restoration work, SFM6S001 has received the Gold Award in Division II judging at the Mid-America Ford and Shelby Nationals and was invited for display at the 2015 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, where it formed part of the first showing of Shelby Mustangs on the lawn. Driven only sparingly since it was completed, SFM6S001 participated in the annual Pebble Beach Tour —a 60-mile excursion for all concours entries—and performed outstandingly. Correctly restored, and simply fascinating, it is an exemplary one-off example with tremendous historical significance. There is no other Shelby quite like the important and distinctive SFM6S001.”
Additional Fords set to cross the block in Scottsdale:
’69 Ford Mustang Boss 429 (Lot #1410) – Matching numbers Boss 429 restored to exact factory specifications
’57 Ford Thunderbird E-Code Convertible (Lot #1057) – Professionally restored and finished in rare Rosewood
’39 Ford Custom Roadster (Lot #1059) – Built over seven years and finished in PPG Rescue Green
’48 Ford Sportsman Woody Convertible (Lot #1311) – Full nut-and-bolt restoration with a rust-free body
’62 Ford F-100 Custom Pickup “Django” (Lot #1062) – Stunning custom and winner at 2015 Detroit Autorama
’66 Ford Fairlane 500 R-Code (Lot #1365) – One of 57 Ford factory race cars built in ’66
“As a longtime sponsor and supporter of Barrett-Jackson, we always look forward to the outstanding selection of collectible Fords that draw enthusiasts worldwide to Scottsdale,” said Jim Owens, performance marketing manager for Ford Motor Company. “This year we are again showcasing today’s lineup—and tomorrow’s collectibles—with dyno drag racing, Ride ’N Drives with professional drivers, and consumer drives of production models available to everyone on-site at the auction. It is setting up to be another spectacular event with Barrett-Jackson in Scottsdale.”
The 2018 Scottsdale Auction docket is now available to view online at Barrett-Jackson.com.