Yesterday we noted how Barrett-Jackson has experts available to bidders to go over a car they may be interested in. I made sure my bud Pete and I took advantage of this in reviewing the 1967-1968 Shelby GT500s he was interested in. Jason Billups of Billups Classic Cars was our tour guide into the intricacies of Shelby-ology, and surprised us by recommending a 1968 Convertible that we hadn’t eyeballed. It was in a different tent from all the cars we had examined, so over we went for Jason to walk us through it.
The Shelby was a two owner, 58,000-mile non-KR GT500 that had lived its entire life in New Mexico. The Southwest’s dry climate meant the body was rust free, and straight as an arrow because it was completely untouched. While it was an automatic, Pete and I had previously talked about a 5-speed conversion to make it a comfortable highway cruiser, and offset the a/t drawback. Jason said his shop had already done a number of conversions and recommended getting the correct final drive to boot. Cost of everything, including the installation, was than $10,000—a veritable bargain compared to the repair and maintenance costs of the European-centric collection Pete managed.
Also intriguing was a 427 that was installed back in the day. While the signage claimed it was a “side oiler” engine (like the one used to power the 1967 Le Mans winning GT40), it turned out to be a standard 390 horse “FE” block with some Edelbrock heads. That didn’t deter Pete though, for as noted earlier in the week he was hoping to get a 427-powered car. The interior was nice and clean and, like the engine compartment, had the original goodies in place. Likely pricing was discussed, Jason summarized the plusses and minuses of all the cars being considered, and the decision was made. The Shelby we would take a run at was in front of us, and tomorrow we will see what happened up on the auction block. Have you ever bought a car at auction, and how was the experience?
#Barrett-Jackson #Scottsdale #Shelby #GT500 #GT500KR #AuctionWeek #Bid