If Marv Heath of Auburn, Washington, only knew what kind of trouble he got me into. Big trouble. See, I'd just about shucked the Shelby bug by Seattle last year. Just about gotten past not buying the Lime Gold '67 GT350.
Then, in the immortal (well, maybe not immortal) words of Emeril, "BAM!" There it was on the show field. Resplendent in its Black Jade paint and correct-appearing gold GT500 stripes. Perhaps it wouldn't have been such a trial were it not for the fact that "the-now-not-so-local-parts-guru" Kent Hatchett had a factory twin for this very car, right down to the original paint color. Here was a Shelby that visually represented everything Kent's car (which he was selling) had-pure Shelby adrenaline with creature comforts.
Both cars were equipped with nearly the same options inside and out: the aforementioned Black Jade topcoat, a black deluxe Mach 1 interior, air conditioning, power steering, power disc brakes, a sport deck rear seat, and a lowly AM radio.
Under the hood, Marv had done a crackerjack job of making the 428 Cobra Jet look and run as good as new, if not better. The detailing didn't stop there, as the undercarriage and C6 tranny matched the sweet detail prevalent on the whole car. That detail extended to the 3.00:1 9-inch open differential. The only thing Marv's car had that Kent's lacked was tilt-away steering. Another thing the two Shelbys had in common was that-at the time of purchase on Marv's car and viewing Kent's on mine-both were in need of restoration.
"The car was a basket case when I purchased it," Marv said. "I had it brought home on a tow truck. The engine was correct, but it did not run, and the suspension had been removed. Fortunately, the majority of the parts and pieces were there. I needed to locate the smog control, air-conditioning unit and begin my search for the history of the car to restore it to original." Scary how similar the stories are. Although Kent's car was red and running.
Here is where the stories part ways. Marv purchased the car and started his restoration with the help of friend Jeff Dion of San Diego, California. (As for me, well, I decided I'd rather sleep with Carla than a car.) Jeff and Marv brought the hunk of junk up to what you see here, a shining example of what Carroll Shelby's company produced in its last two years.
Were there problems for Marv to overcome? Well, yes. For one thing, an earthquake sent the car hopping while under restoration. Fearing damage to the Shelby, Marv's first thought was to grab the GT500 and hold it down. It worked. "If the Shelby was going to be destroyed, I was going with her," he confessed. Now that's dedication.
So, we see how Marv feels about the car. And, because he is like most of us and is a fanatic about his Mustang, there is a warrant out for the family cat. It seems that, like most felines, the family kitty has found Marv's Shelby a comfy place to rest, especially when he's working on the car. There are also all those items in most any garage that hang perilously close to the car. He has removed them. As for the cat, well, that's another story.