The newly-restored legendary Shelby Prototype, dubbed ‘The Green Hornet’ has the auction world in a frenzy as it was announced it will go across the block at the Barrett-Jackson Collector Car Auction in Scottsdale, Arizona in January of 2013. Being one of the rarest and most desirable Ford Mustangs in the world, the 1968 Green Hornet Mustang was one of a very few factory prototypes to survive the almighty crusher.
As far as most are concerned ‘The Green Hornet’ experimental prototype is a piece of rolling history of what Ford and Shelby American were building at the height of the muscle car era. Its considered one of the most innovative and unique vehicles of its time with modifications like fuel-injection, independent rear suspension and a unique rear disk brake configuration.
Check below for a rundown of ‘The Green Hornet’s’ history.
The Green Hornet Rises:
In 1967, the Ford team was impressed with a prototype Mustang called “Li’l Red,” which inspired the “California Special” also known as the GT/CS. They liked this model so much, that they wanted their design team to study the feasibility of creating a nationally available version of the GT/CS, which would be marketed as a GT/Sport Coupe. As a result of this effort, two prototypes were built. One of those prototypes was VIN 8F01S104288, a Lime Gold, 1968 Mustang notchback, with a deluxe Ivy Gold interior, 390 V8 engine and C6 automatic transmission.
After completing the show circuit, the decision was made to not move forward with the GT/SC program. Instead of being scrapped, the lime Gold notchback was sent to Shelby American to once again become a prototype, this time for a different kind of Mustang…a Shelby.
Many modifications were made to the car, including an experimental Conelec fuel-injection system, independent rear suspension and a unique rear disc brake configuration, making The Green Hornet the platform for innovation in design, performance and handling.
What resulted was an experimental Shelby called EXP 500, a prototype that would become fondly known as “The Green Hornet.” The car eventually turned into a pet-project of Fred Goodell, Chief Engineer at Shelby American, and both he and Carroll Shelby spent a lot of time testing and developing components for this project.
For decades, it was thought that The Green Hornet had been destroyed like other concept cars of the era and its celebrated existence had become nothing more than urban legend. But both fate and Goodell’s fondness for the car intervened, saving The Green Hornet from the crusher and allowing it to slip into the mainstream where it enjoyed a somewhat mundane existence for many years, until it was rediscovered and restored back to its former glory.
“The ‘One and only Green Hornet’ as Carroll liked to say, is an incredibly significant piece of Ford, Shelby and muscle car history with a documented provenance verifying its authenticity,” said Craig Jackson, Chairman and CEO of Barrett-Jackson. “We couldn’t be prouder to have a vehicle that was so ahead of its time, crossing our block.”