HOUSTON – Organizers of the second annual Concours d’Elegance of Texas have confirmed that the only big-block GT convertible ever built by Shelby American Inc. in 1967, will be part of this year’s show field May 5 at La Torretta Lake Resort & Spa.
The 1967 Shelby GT500 convertible was originally assigned to Carroll Shelby. It was the most expensive GT500 in Shelby American’s company car inventory and the only Shelby GT convertible factory-equipped with dual-quad carburetion. After it was acquired by the Styles Collection in 2009, more than three years were spent researching and documenting the car’s extensive history while R&A Motorsports performed the concours-level restoration. The car has been on tour throughout the United States at select automotive events since its restoration was completed in 2012, and visitors to the Concours d’Elegance of Texas will get a chance to see the car in person.
On Aug. 9, 1966, Shelby American placed a special order for three identically equipped cars with a massive 428 cubic inch “big-block” engine: a fastback, a coupe, and this convertible. These 1967 Shelbys would become the first production GT500 cars serialized and built on Ford’s assembly line. Upon arriving at Shelby American’s Los Angeles facility in November 1966, the convertible was designated a “company car” and promptly assigned to Carroll Shelby. Over the next four months, Carroll’s “personal driver” was often loaned to his friends, employees, celebrities and visiting executives from the Ford Motor Co.
By April 1967, Carroll’s GT500 convertible was repurposed as a “1968 styling prototype.” A newly designed fiberglass front end, hood, and taillight panel were received from Dearborn and fitted to the car. Over the next five months, the convertible was extensively photographed for print ads, brochures and dealer literature to promote the 1968 Shelby Cobra GT models. Additional history, documents, interviews, vintage advertisements and photography can be enjoyed at www.1967shelbyconvertible.com.
“Celebrating the Cars of Carroll Shelby” as its Featured Class, the Concours d’Elegance of Texas will also include 18 classes recognizing a distinct range of marques and eras, including antique and vintage through 1924, the classic era, post-war automobiles, race cars and pre- and post-war motorcycles. For details, visit www.concoursoftexas.org.
The concours is a highlight of The Houston Classic Weekend, which runs from May 3-5 and offers visitors the chance to experience Worldwide’s 12th annual catalog sale, The Houston Classic Auction. Consignments include a 1967 Shelby 427 Cobra CSX3264, formerly owned by Rod Stewart and Jan and Dean, and a 1950 Nash-Healey roadster that was owned by Donald Healey. See worldwide-auctioneers.com for more information.
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