Mystery Shelby prototype caught in Arizona
Ford development engineers had the misfortune this week of rolling by a convoy of auto journalists who happened to be testing the new Mercedes-AMG GT C in the same area near Prescott, Ariz. We were able to chase down their team of vehicles to get these shots of this Shelby GT350R mule with heavy camouflage on the front end, the rims, and a bit around the rear bumper.
The big question is of course, what Shelby is it? It’s clear by the wing and badges that it was a GT350R and the high-revving 5.2-liter V-8 was in full song. But with all that camo draped on the front end, it suggests one of two things: that this is some sort of 350R variant – possibly an even higher-spec track model – or a mule for the long-rumored GT500.
There appears to be a much bigger grille and lower front air dam, as well as a higher hood, which could mean that the flat-plane-crank V-8 has been fitted with a supercharger. Also note the wheels, which are hiding something, possibly larger brakes. Additionally, it was caught testing with a Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, an indication of benchmark testing of the car.
Given the recent flap over GT350s overheating at the track, it’s more than possible however that this is just Ford testing a fix to aid cooling to the GT350.
Whatever it is, Ford has something cooking under the hood of the Shelby Mustang, and it shouldn’t be long before we know exactly what it is.