Friday, May 31, 2013

2013 Shelby GT350

  • I didn't waste any time gawking at the GT350's aggressive front splitter, substantial functional hood scoop or massive wheel and tire package. Instead, I jumped into the comfortable Recaro seats, inserted the key and cranked over the 624-horsepower engine. A heartbeat later, the 5.0-liter V8 spun to life with a throaty roar out its twin Borla exhaust pipes. The engine idled with an excitement the standard GT could never match match, and once underway, a stab on the accelerator quickly extinguished all doubts - this Shelby is bloody quick. Under the right conditions (limiting wheelspin is the greatest obstacle), this green beast will effortlessly crack the 60 mph benchmark in under four seconds. Few public roads can tolerate its top speed.

  • The short-throw shifter proved heavy and mechanical in action, taking a bit of practice to master, but it never felt clunky or not up to the task. Once in gear, throttle response (listen for the telltale supercharger whine) was quick. First gear felt too short for my tastes, and I consistently had traction issues. Third gear was the sweet spot, with the Shelby offering enough torque to pull from just about anywhere on its tachometer.

  • Few would call any Mustang small and nimble, but the GT350 breaks the stereotype. Once familiar with the coupe's corners (rearward visibility being the most limited), I was able to push the Shelby surprisingly hard in the California's legendary canyons. Hunkered down on its tuned suspension with four sticky contact patches, the Shelby had me relishing each and every corner. Turn-in was good, mid-corner feel was stable and the brakes were always up to the task. This two-door still felt big from behind the wheel, but each of its physical reactions to control inputs told another story - one of sharpness and agility.

  • If forced to list good and bad attributes, I'd lodge complaints against the mostly stock Mustang interior (when the price climbs this high, it's hard not to expect more) and tacked-on A-pillar gauges, which felt cheap. Yet I would applaud the engine's power, exhaust note, suspension tuning and handling.

  • The more I thought about it, the clearer it became that the 2013 Shelby GT350 is probably the best Ford Mustang I have ever driven. And, even with a price that more than doubles its donor's cost, history's fondness for Shelby models may someday prove that this car is a worthwhile investment, too. I'll take mine in Ruby Red.

Related Gallery 2013 Shelby GT350: Quick Spin

Vital Stats


Supercharged 5.0L V8


624 HP / 536 LB-FT


6-Speed Manual

0-60 Time:

3.7 Seconds (est.)

Top Speed:

190 MPH (est.)


Rear-Wheel Drive

Curb Weight:

3,950 LBS (est.)



Base Price:


As-Tested Price:


Image Credit: Copyright 2013 Drew Phillips / AOL

Category: Aftermarket, Coupe, Performance, Ford, Quick Spins

Tags: 2013 ford mustang, 2013 shelby gt350, carroll shelby, ford, ford mustang, gt350, quick spin, quickspin, shelby, shelby american, shelby mustang

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