After the tours of the lot and the house, we went for a ride in the clone car. From the moment Paul fired it up, we were as infatuated as he was. The low rumble from the Flowmasters, the comfort of the buckets, and the competition look of the white-face Auto Meters put us in the mood to cruise, so Paul took us for a ride to his previous house. There, he pulled the car up along dirt driveway into a large vacant lot behind a smallish stucco building.
"I used to have about a hundred cars on this lot," he said. "They were in rows, and there were no weeds. My wife finally told me that if I was going to keep that many cars, we would have to have a bigger house. That's why we moved to where we are now."
He actually reduced his inventory after relocating. That must have been tough on a guy whose hobby and vocation is lots and lots of cars.
What: '67-'68 Ford Shelby GT350 Clone
Owners: Mike Terri and Paul Croswhite
Hometown: Sylmar, California
Short-Block: A bored-and-stroked '65 289 fitted with a 302 crank that was turned 10/10, TRW connecting rods, and Keith Black forged pistons. Balanced and blueprinted. Engle Camshaft.
Heads: They're a pair from a '65 Ford 289. They've been cc'd, ported, and polished.
Headers: Hooker Super Comp running into 3-inch mandrel-bent tubes and Flowmaster mufflers.
Intake: Cobra under a Holley/Le Mans carburetor
Drivetrain: Ford Top Loader four-speed transmission rebuilt by Bill Thompson in San Bernardino, California. Dual-friction 200mm clutch. Original driveshaft and a Ford 9-inch rear with 3.50:1 gears and a Trac-Lok limited slip.
Suspension: Subframe connectors. The frame mounts Eibach 1-inch lowered springs at the front and stockers at the rear. The shocks are KYB all around, and there's a 1-inch torsion bar with polyurethane bushings. The back end carries a pair of 31/44-inch traction bars, and the 10-spoke Shelby 15x7 wheels are wrapped in BFGoodrich 225/60R15 M+S rubber. The brake system is made up of a pair of '67 Shelby Kelsey-Hayes four-piston discs at the front and SSBC discs at the rear.
Interior: The dash was rebuilt with an Auto Meter speedometer, tachometer, and oil pressure and temperature gauges along with water, volt, fuel, fuel-pressure, and engine-vacuum gauges. The interior carries replacement stock front bucket seats and the folding rear, and the belts have been swapped out for Crow five-point racing harnesses. The original '68 Deluxe door panels are still in the car, but the original carpet has been replaced with reproduction Auto Custom Carpets floor covering. The column now sports a Grant three-spoke wood steering wheel.
Body: A GT500 hood with its hood vents help keep the engine bay cooler. To finish off the car, Bob added Maier fiberglass components, including the nose, hood, and tail spoiler.
Facts: The 289 used in original GT350s put out 306 hp, according to factory specs. The clone came with a 351 Windsor, but Bob bought a 289 from Paul, beginning their friendship, and swapped it in with top-quality internals.
Trivia: The GT350 was first produced in the fall of 1964 as a '65 model. The last of the breed came to the showroom as a '70.