2011 Shelby GT350 live at Barrett-Jackson
The first thing we did when we arrived in Scottsdale last night was to make a bee-line to check out the car in person. We also caught up with Jim Owens, Shelby’s Vice President of Marketing and Communications, who talked to us about the car. Follow the jump for what we learned about the 2011 GT350.
Photos by Drew Phillips / Copyright ©2010 Weblogs, Inc.
Price aside, what about the styling? The 2011 GT350 takes cues from each year of the classic versions. “It’s a lot of things that were historic and iconic that were a representation of the car,” Owens told us regarding the inspiration for the design. There’s actually quite a bit of the ’69 and ’70 model in the 2011 model, especially if you look at the rear of the car. We’re still not sure if a combination of design cues was the best way to go, and would have liked to see more or even complete inspiration from the simpler ’65 and ’66 models.
We found a sketch of the original design concept and actually like it better than the real thing. It seems to have a cleaner look that is missing from the final product. Items like the grille and taillights don’t necessarily flow perfectly with the design of the car, although Owens was quick to remind us that the car at the auction was still technically a concept. Any or all of the design elements are subject to tweaking, adjustments and changes before it goes to production. We also expect the overall fit and finish to be improved, since the car you see here was put together in about a month.
When it comes down to it, Shelby believes they have built the best GT350 they could. It might cost more than than most Mustang owners can afford, and not everyone will like the way it looks, but we fully expect it to perform like a $60,000 sports car. “It’s going to deliver the performance this car deserves,” Owens promised us. We’ll take his word for now, but we’re going to reserve our final judgment until we can get behind the wheel.