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2008 Ford Shelby GT Wins Motor Trend Ponycar War


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LAS VEGAS--Shelby and Ford once again proved to be a winning combination when Motor Trend announced the champion of its Pony Expressed comparison test in its April 2008 issue. When the 2008 Ford Shelby GT Mustang was challenged on the basis of performance and value, the Shelby GT smoked the competition from Roush and Saleen. The 2008 Shelby GT is built by Shelby Automobiles, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Carroll Shelby International Inc., (CSBI.PK) and sold through Ford dealers across the United States.

The Shelby GT is a well-balanced, fun to drive machine that draws upon our experience of making Mustangs go faster, said Amy Boylan, president of Shelby Autos. Every lesson we learned while earning our stripes over the past 46 years is built into these ponycars. The competition was fierce with three very good cars in this test, so Im proud that the Ford Shelby GT has earned another victory for both Team Shelby and every Ford Shelby owner.

Motor Trend assembled a normally aspirated Mustang from Shelby, Roush and Saleen for their test. All of the cars were base models with optional upgraded wheel/tire packages and brakes. The cars were put through their paces on the street, strip and road course.

Our idea was to round up Mustangs from the three companies with strong factory ties to Ford, stated Matt Stone, Executive Editor of Motor Trend. Saleen has been producing modified Mustangs for nearly 25 years. Jack Roushs connection to Ford began with drag racing several decades ago. And Carroll Shelbys involvement with the Blue Oval needs no introduction. While all three outfits have high buck, supercharged offerings atop their lineups, we focused on the more affordable, naturally aspirated models in order to get a feel for what can be done with the Mustang GT without spending a fortune.

Once the smoke cleared, the Shelby was firmly in the winners circle. The car posted the best time in the figure 8, had the best lateral acceleration, was the fastest to 80 MPH and the lightest in the group. Motor Trend lauded the Shelby GT for its crisp turn-in, fade-free brakes, responsive throttle and tenacious grip. The editors also declared the Shelby GTs looks as the most striking. Its dyno test showed that the Shelby actually made more horsepower and substantially more torque than the company advertises.

These three players were similar in some ways, different in others, which is interesting since they all are based on the same car, noted Stone. Besides our usual round of track tests, we put them on a dyno, to verify horsepower and performance claims. While the Roush and Saleen each had a few standout features, we felt the Shelby GT was the most cohesive package, delivering the best combination of components, style and bang for buck.

The Shelby name has stood for performance since Carroll Shelby began building cars in 1962. The company builds a limited number of 427 and 289 Cobra component cars; customers may choose from contemporary Ford Mustang models like the Shelby GT, Shelby GT500 and the Shelby GT500KR. Post title packages include the Shelby GT500 Super Snake and Terlingua Racing Team.

The Shelby Team builds a wide range of cars for real enthusiasts, added Amy Boylan, president of Shelby Autos. Each vehicle is designed to be fun, well-engineered, distinctive and exclusive. Our Cobra continues to be the most emulated car in the world today. The new GT500KR is truly the King of the Road while the 2008 Shelby GT offers muscle car fans tremendous value. We literally offer a Shelby for every serious performance fan.

About Shelby Automobiles, Inc. and Carroll Shelby Licensing

Founded by legend Carroll Shelby, Shelby Automobiles, Inc., (www.shelbyautos.com) manufactures and markets performance vehicles and related products. Shelby Automobiles is a division of Carroll Shelby International, Inc. (CSBI.PK). Carroll Shelby Licensing Inc. (www.carrollshelbyinternational.com), also a wholly owned division, is the exclusive holder of Carroll Shelby's trademarks and vehicle design rights. It also holds trademark rights for Shelby-branded apparel, accessories and collectibles.