1965 Shelby GT350 “Supercharged”

Unveiled by Carroll Shelby on January 27, 1965, the GT350 fastback had a fiberglass hood and functional scoop, and a clean-looking grille with a tri-color horse on the driver’s side. All 1965 Shelbys were Wimbledon White with a blue GT350 side stripe below the door. Dealer option Le Mans stripes were available, running down the center of the body.

The interior was black with a flat wood-rimmed wheel. A special instrument cluster in the center of the dash carried a large tach and oil pressure gauge.

A special aluminum intake increased the solid-lifter hi-po 289’s horsepower from 271 to 306. Exhaust from the Tri-Y headers exited ahead of the rear wheels. The suspension was extensively reworked, with a large front stabilizer bar, quick steering, lowered upper A-frames, Koni shocks, and traction bars. The front was stiffened with an export brace and Monte Carlo bar. In all, 50 improvements were listed.

Shelby delivered competition results. His three team cars dominated SCCA “B” production, and Jerry Titus won the National Championship.

Serial number 5010 was designated by Shelby as an “advanced prototype,” supercharged for developmental testing and fitted with T-Bird taillights. It’s the first and only 1965 GT350 to have the Paxton supercharger, which was offered as an option in 1966.

This Shelby GT350 Supercharged was also used for 1966 research and analysis. It was fitted with 1966 rear brake scoops and seems likely to have been the car in the movie “Red Line 7000” with James Caan, though evidence is circumstantial.

However, it has holes from brackets being fitted for head rests, exhaust cut-outs, and the controls and holes from a Mustang console being fitted, which the movie car had. Company records also show that a car was rented to the movie studio just prior to this car’s fitment of special taillights and 1966 extras. The Shelby American World Registry also affirms the movie connection.

Serial number 5010 was sold by Shelby’s own dealership after its promotional career ended, first to J.B. Hunter, then to Joe Flowers, and finally to the present owner in 1988. He has owned the car three times since then, with three other individuals owning it in between.

B. Mitchell Carlson

SCM Senior Auction Analyst

Brian wrote his first auction report for Old Cars Weekly in 1990 and has contributed his colorful commentary in Sports Car Market since 1998. His work appears regularly in Kelley Blue Book, and also in a handful of marque-specific publications. Carlson shuns what he calls “single-marque tunnel vision” and takes great pride in his “vehicular diversity.” He attends about two dozen auctions per year, but he broke away to roar around Oregon with Paul Hardiman in SCM’s Dodge Viper and Porsche 911 Turbo in the 2015 Northwest Passage.

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