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1968 Shelby Cobra
The GT 350 

by Dennis Begley


The authors's 1968 GT 350 Shelby Cobra (click for larger image)

The 1968 Shelby GT 350 was a continuation of the '67 Shelby model. Shipped from Ford's assembly plant in Metuchen, New Jersey, as Mustang GT's with heavy duty suspensions, only slight suspension changes were made. Basically, the buyers in '67 demonstrated with their pocketbooks they wanted fewer all out performance options and more luxury features. 

The suspension changes were special Shelby only coil and leaf springs that became more stiff under stress, yet under normal driving yielded a better ride. The front sway (stabilizer) bar was thicker (.94") than the GT Mustang and adjustable, Gabriel shock absorbers replaced the GT shocks.

The primary difference, other than the cosmetics, between the '67 GT 350's and the '68 GT 350's was the engine. Ford discontinued the hi-po 289 after '67 and introduced the 302.  Gone was Ford's infamous High Performance 289. The stock 302 engine was rated at 250 HP. Shelby replaced the stock cast iron intake manifold with an aluminum, Cobra hi-rise with a Holley 4 barrel carb setting on top. The very early cars carried the stock cast iron because the factory couldn't get an ok on the emission tests using the aluminum hi-rise and Holley carb. A unique option offered for the small block version was a Paxton supercharger which increased the horsepower by 40% to about 335 horse. Big block horsepower from a small block Ford. For a few dollars more though, the buyer could get a GT 500, so very few superchargers were actually installed. The factory offered performance and dress up parts like headers, Koni shocks and shift knobs. Ram air was standard on the GT 500KR, an option on the GT 350. The ram air option was a bonnet that ducted air through the front hood air scoops directly to the air cleaner and carb. It fit under the hood with a cut out for the air cleaner. 

 

  Above is a picture of the engine compartment in my GT 350. Note the oval Cobra air cleaner and the Cobra valve covers. Both were painted black with the silver letters with no paint. the oval air cleaner is the same size as the one used for the dual 4 barrels, although this car has a single 4 barrel.  The '68 Shelby Mustangs came with mandatory power steering and power brakes with discs in the front and drums in the rear. This car has a new three core radiator.  
 

 

The GT 500's require a separate page to themselves. Be sure to read about the  GT 500's and the GT 500 King of the Road.

 

Production Figures for 1968 Shelby Cobra (Mustangs)

GT 350  1,253
GT 350 convertible 404
GT 500  1,140
GT 500 convertible 402
GT 500KR  933
GT 500KR convertible 318
GT 500 Notchback Prototype 1
Total Production of 1968 Shelby Mustangs  4,451 
 

 More about Dennis's 1968 GT 350

  This page was created somewhere around 1983 on the pages of the Old Fort Mustanger's PonyTalk. It was last updated on Sunday, April 17, 2005 .