Car video reviews:
When Old School Muscle Body Meets Crate Engines, the Shelby GT500CR Is Born
Ever fancy driving an updated version of a classic American muscle car? Have you ever wondered what a cool experience it must be to loosen up on Sundays at the wheel of an exquisite automobile, but with all the creature comforts of modern vehicles?

When Old School Muscle Body Meets Crate Engines, the Shelby GT500CR Is Born

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No drama, no worries about every little mechanical detail that can ruin an otherwise perfect trip at any moment. No fiddling about under the hood, stranded on the side of the road, as sometimes classic car owners find themselves doing.

Yes, you could argue that these little mishaps are part of the whole experience. These stories are sometimes the ones that keep the flame burning, but it does not always have to be this way. Oh no! We are now in 2021, and modern solutions exist for every one of these issues.

So, if you are not so keen on being in the loop with all these hurdles of classic car-owning, and just want to turn the ignition and enjoy the drive with no worries, you will be glad to hear there are ways to do that.

We stumbled upon the guys at Classic Recreations, a garage who promises to create such machines. They specialize in building top-notch high-performance cars and trucks ranging in scope from meticulous restorations after specific owner preferences to custom car building using an "any model, any time" approach. All while keeping everything under the hood to the high-tech standards of modern vehicles, mainly by in-house fabrication.

Shelby Mustang GT500CR

The pick of the bunch in our eyes from their line-up is the Shelby GT500CR inspired by the legendary Mustang from 1968-69. The car has been through the usual transformation process and ended up gaining lots of power for fast straight-line acceleration, and several upgrades for superior handling. The shop's recipe for transforming such a legend into a high-tech modern classic includes a couple of engine choices and 600 lbs (272 kg) of weight reduction using carbon fiber cladding, while maintaining a factory-like appearance.

The exterior design of this remarkable machine stays very well in the lines of the legend it represents, boosting authentic Carroll Shelby fiberglass trim, sequential Shelby taillights, Shelby GT500CR emblems, and a Shelby Lemans Racing gas cap. It all blends to form a very classy presence that is definitely set to turn heads everywhere on the road.


At the heart of this muscle car the shop offers a choice of two engines, either a 427ci (7.0 liter) Ford Performance developing a hefty 545 hp, or a 302ci (5.0 liter) Coyote Gen 3 Ford Performance with 490 hp. The latter is able to take advantage of a Stage 2 Whipple supercharger to get to a mind-blowing 770 horses. These serious powerplants can be mated to a Tremec manual transmission or even an optional automatic unit. Giving the Shelby Mustang its mighty roar, the exhaust system consists of BBK ceramic coated headers, dual mandrel-bent exhaust, and Magnaflow Mufflers.

All this firepower must be able to stop on short notice so the Shelby GT500CR gets 4-piston front and rear Wilwood calipers with 12-inch slotted, cross-drilled and vented rotors. Enclosing all this highly effective performance, there are the Shelby 427 by American Racing wheels in Michelin high-performance Z-rated tires, 225/40/187 section in the front, and wider 275/35/18 in the rear end. The advanced handling capabilities are sustained by the all-around coilover suspension and front and rear oversized sway bars.


The interior is handcrafting mastery, from the soft leather and deluxe 1967 door panels to the dashboard with classic Shelby instruments, polished woodgrain aluminum steering wheel, sparkling chrome inlays, and Shelby Cobra gear knob. The seats are highback-style Carol Shelby Scat Rally series built for long-journey comfort and also high-paced body support while driving, together with the 5-point camlock seatbelts. Not least, in the (extremely unlikely) case that you get bored listening to the infamous Ford Performance engines, you have at your disposal the Pioneer sound system with a Classic Recreations custom trap door, ready to blast all your favorite songs and make your road trips even more memorable.


You may very well be all too carried away by now, as any true petrolhead would, with the fascination that this Shelby GT500CR entices, but you also should be aware that this kind of luxury, performance, and modern reinterpretation of classic legends does not come cheap. Classic Recreations garage has this model listed at $214,900 and it can only go up from there depending on the options list and customer preference. 


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