Shelby American unveiled its 2017 Super Snake Mustang at the Ford Performance display within Barrett-Jackson’s 46th annual Scottsdale Auction to celebrate the 50th anniversary the iconic car.
The first Super Snake resulted from a conversation between Carroll Shelby and the Shelby American sales manager, who thought the market needed something with even more power and performance than the Shelby GT500. To achieve that goal, Shelby engineers placed a 427-cubic-inch race engine, similar to the one used in the Ford GT40 MK II to win at Le Mans, into a 1967 Shelby GT500 Mustang that usually was used for tire testing.
The upgraded GT500 had an estimated 600 horsepower and reached a top speed of 170 miles per hour. Putting such a vehicle into production in 1967 would have meant a price tag of $8,000, thus there was no series production. However, that single Super Snake test car grew in value, selling at a Mecum Auction in 2013 for $1.3 million.
“We compared the groundbreaking 1967 and 2007 model Super Snakes to other cars of their era when setting the performance parameters for our anniversary model,” Shelby American president Gary Patterson said Friday., adding “the new Super Snake matches those cars’ competitive advantages.”
To create the newest Super Snake, Shelby American worked with Ford Performance to sharpen the handling of the independent suspension and then upgraded the brakes with massive calipers and rotors. The car is powered by Ford’s iconic 5.0-liter V8 engine with forced induction for 670 horsepower, though the addition of an optional supercharger will bump that to 750 horsepower.
According to Shelby American, the “properly optioned Super Snake” fitted with street legal Michelin tires and running on pump gas will go from 0 to 60 mph in just 3.5 seconds and cover a quarter mile in 10.9 seconds.
The Super Snake features a new hood, rockers, spoilers, splitters, grilles, fog lights, rear tail panel and rear diffuser assembly that add to its performance. Other styling cues include anniversary stripes and badges. The interior continues the anniversary theme across the seats, dash and floor.
“In a world filled with sterile cars,” Patterson said, the 2017 Shelby Super Snake is “a throwback to a time when people enjoyed driving.”
Only 500 of the 2017 Shelby Super Snake 50th anniversary models will be built, each at the Shelby facility in Las Vegas, where it will be assigned a Shelby serial number and documented in the official Shelby Registry. MSRP will begin at $69,995, which includes the cost of the base Ford Mustang GT.