Fans of the Shelby Series 1 sports cars launched in the late 1990s can expect a modern version based on the chassis of one of the originals.
Revealed on Thursday, the new car is called Series 2, and virtually every element of the Series 1 donor has been redesigned or replaced for better performance.
The Series 1 arrived in 1999 and has the honor of being the only car designed and developed from scratch by Carroll Shelby. The plan was to use the car's honeycomb aluminum monocoque chassis for a line of modern sports cars, so the first was called Series 1, but the financial problems meant that the project never progressed. That was until a few years ago when a company by the name of Wingard Motorsports came on the scene.
Wingard purchased all of the remaining Shelby Series 1 chassis and parts, and working closely with Shelby reviewed the car to reduce weight by maximizing the integration of aluminum and carbon fiber housed components. Wingard further refined the suspension, braking and transmission to allow an increase in the power of the original car, which generated up to 460 horsepower with a 4.0-liter supercharged Oldsmobile V8.
According to Shelby President Gary Patterson, Series 2 is more than 12 percent lighter than Series 1, which weighed about 2,850 pounds. Patterson said the Series 2 is also capable of supporting power trains that deliver more than 800 horsepower.
Shelby has designed the car to fit its large aluminum block 427 FE or small Windsor block coupled to a custom-designed five-speed ZF transaxle. Other engine options can be supported and buyers can also decide between multipoint safety belts and four or six point roll bars.
The Series 2 also features an interior cantilever suspension design for the front and rear, which minimizes the weight of the spring wheel. In each hub there is a 19-inch wheel wrapped in Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 wheels and a powerful six-piston brake caliper.
Shelby will offer Series 2 at the rate of four cars per year, starting in June. of this year. The cars will be sold as components and Wingard can complete them. They will come with a one-year parts and labor warranty, along with a free weekend driver training course held at Spring Mountain Raceway near Las Vegas.