Las Vegas is the entertainment capital of the world, so it is only fitting that the city’s NASCAR race be paced by something that reflects that image. The aggressively-styled, exciting new 2011 Shelby GT350 will serve as the pace car for the Feb. 28 Shelby American NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. The race will be the public’s first opportunity to see the supercharged supercar at speed – and the first time for a Shelby GT350 to pace a NASCAR event. The 2011 Shelby GT350 is constructed by Shelby American, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Carroll Shelby International, Inc.
“When we unveiled the new 2011 Shelby GT350 last month, fans clamored for the car to pace this NASCAR race,” said Amy Boylan, president of Shelby American. “Since so much of the GT350 was developed on the road course, drag strip and oval at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, it was appropriate to show off the Shelby’s handling there during the race. It will be exciting to watch our Shelby GT350 lead a race for the first time since 1970.”
The Shelby team unveiled a supercharged concept version of the Mustang-based 2011 Shelby GT350 to the surprise of thousands of automotive enthusiasts gathered at the Barrett-Jackson Auction opening-night gala to honor the 45th anniversary of the first GT350 and first Shelby big-block Cobra. It was an immediate hit with the muscle car crowd.
“The Shelby GT350 was designed to be nimble and powerful,” explained Gary Davis, vice president of production for Shelby American. “Beginning with the new 2011 small-block Ford Mustang GT, owe created a car that is as fun to drive as the 1965-1970 model-year Shelby GT350, but thoroughly modern. It is a true driver’s car.”
The Shelby GT350 is a post-title program. The customer purchases a car from their local Ford dealer, which is transformed into a GT350 by the Shelby American Team in Las Vegas. A limited number will be built in the 2011 model year. A Ford Mustang GT can be drop-shipped by a Ford dealer to Shelby’s Las Vegas facility for conversion, or a customer may arrange to have a properly-specified car transported to the factory.
Each GT350 will be adorned in the traditional white paint scheme, accented with Shelby Guardsman Blue Le Mans stripes. The GT350 will feature the new Coyote 5.0 liter Ford V8, coupled to a six-speed transmission and center-exit exhaust. Blue Shelby GT350 valve covers and billet caps set off the supercharged engine. The Baer brake system features a six-piston kit in the front, as well as 14-inch ERADISPEED rotors in the rear with cooling ducts for all four corners.
The suspension was upgraded with new Ford Racing springs, struts, sway bars and adjustable caster/camber plates. The car also receives a new front fascia, tail light trim, front splitter, rear deck lid filler panel and rear fascia. Functional scoops are located on the side rockers and hood. The GT350 badges on the outside and inside of the car will include a Shelby serial number. The A-pillar carries a fuel pressure, oil pressure and boost gauge.
Shelby teamed with LVMS for the Feb. 28 event to honor the 45th anniversary of the Shelby G.T. 350 and 427 Cobra introductions in 1965.
Customers interested in a Shelby GT350 should contact Roger Sorel at (702) 942-7325 or visit www.gt350.shelbyamerican.com.
Tickets for the Feb. 28 Shelby American, Feb. 27 Sam’s Town 300 NASCAR Nationwide Series race, the fabulous Neon Garage fan experience and Lucky 7 preferred parking lot may be
purchased by calling the LVMS ticket office at (800) 644-4444 or online at www.LVMS.com.