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*Please note that this car is titled as a Ford.
Chassis number 5S111 is nearly the last example of the 113-car batch that comprised the first homologating series of Shelby GT350 production. According to the register of the Shelby American Automobile Club, this car was received by Shelby American’s Los Angeles shop on December 21, 1964, and on March 29, 1965, Shelby’s modifications to the body, suspension, interior, and engine were begun. Following the completion of the build on April 26th, the car was distributed three days later for retail to the Portland, Oregon-based Ford dealership of Marv Tonkin, brother of well-known Ferrari dealer Ron Tonkin.
Optioned with Cragar wheels and finished with blue Le Mans stripes, 5S111 was purchased new by Portland resident Clarence Smith. Mr. Smith sold the Shelby some time later to Richard Millison of nearby Hillsboro, who in turn sold the car to Bill Pfohl of Cave Junction; at which time, a Boss 351 engine had been installed. Mr. Pfohl retained possession of 5S111 for over 25 years, and when he offered the car for sale through the Snakebite Bulletin in February 2001, it was advertised as being modified to R-Model racing specifications.
Given these modifications, it is believed that Mr. Pfohl extensively used the car for racing during his period of ownership. On August 8, 2001, the Shelby was acquired by Craig Poundstone of Chico, California, who continued to race the capable machine, including participation in the high-speed event at the SAAC-27 meet at the California Speedway on July 7, 2002.
About 10 years later, the consignor, an enthusiast based in Long Beach, California, sought to add a quality Shelby Mustang to his collection, and sought the advice of Curt Vogt, an esteemed Shelby expert who has been repairing and driving Shelbys and Ford muscle cars since the early 1970s. In business for over 25 years, Mr. Vogt’s Wallingford, Connecticutbased Cobra Automotive specializes in parts and restorations of Shelby Cobras and Mustangs. At the consignor’s behest, Mr. Vogt searched for an appropriate Shelby GT350 for sale and arranged to purchase 5S111 soon after locating Mr. Poundstone’s listing in late 2010.
Having had its share of rigorous driving over the prior 35 years, the car was shipped to Cobra Automotive for a complete restoration, which involved a comprehensive rebuild of all mechanical components and a complete cosmetic refinish in the authentic Wimbledon White livery. As demonstrated by a stack of invoices and numerous photographs, this process totaled almost $150,000 and included a thorough rebuild of the engine, suspension, brakes, transmission, clutch, wiring harness, and every other mechanical system.
Dynamometer sheets generated during several October 2011 sessions with the rebuilt engine reflect that the 289 cid high-performance motor developed 298 hp at 5,900 rpm and 305 lbs./ft. of torque. Completing refurbishment in spring 2012, 5S111 currently displays just over 200 miles since restoration and is a faithful and factory-correct example that offers future ownership both considerable driving pleasure and exhibition potential.
As one of the first batch of Shelby Mustang street cars, this GT350 features Carroll Shelby’s purest vision of repackaging the Ford into a full performance machine, as subsequent models proved to be increasingly impacted by luxury considerations. Paramount to this concept, 5S111 is one of the rare early cars that features battery placement in the trunk, a weight-balancing measure that implies just how race-prepared the early street examples really were. Lavishly restored and one of just 562 cars made for 1965, this outstanding GT350 is as authentic an example as can be found in today’s market, and offers serious muscle car collectors and Shelby enthusiasts a rare opportunity to acquire the cornerstone of a legend.