Candyapple convertible: 428ci "Police Interceptor"
engine, C-6 automatic, air conditioning, P/S, P/B, Thermactor (smog), AM
radio, tinted glass and a white power top over a black décor interior.
Serialized on November 1, 1966 and completed on November 21 at Ford’s
San Jose plant, this GT-500 was shipped to Shelby American as a complete
car. Upon arrival, car 0139 was designated a "Company Car – Engineering
Proto" on the Production Order, dated December 7, 1966.
The initial hand-built
body parts were installed on this G.T. 500 prototype between January and
March 1967. According to the Vehicle Information Report obtained from
the Carroll Shelby Foundation, this one-of-a-kind convertible was
immediately assigned to Carroll Shelby, was used by various Shelby
American personnel, and was often loaned to several non-employees.
In April, the
convertible was loaned to a Ford Motor Company executive and was not
returned. In June 1967, Shelby American sent invoice #5040 to Zurich
American Insurance for “Repairs of Engineering 1968 Prototype
Convertible Stolen and Returned, April 1967.” The bill totaled $506.78
for labor and bolt-on parts, including two 4bbl carburetors, air
cleaner, distributor, rotor, radiator cap, oil cap, oil filter, hood pin
kit, tail light bezel, tail pipe extensions, AM radio, steering wheel,
seat belts, shoulder harnesses and two fire extinguishers.
By mid-August 1967, this convertible received more ’68-styling
accoutrements including a prototype roll bar, wheel covers, fuel filler
cap, emblems and Woodgrain interior trim. Car 0139 was the convertible
used for initial press photos, factory brochures and the first print ads
that appeared in November 1967.
How this car escaped
Ford Motor Company’s strict policy of crushing all engineering
prototypes is unknown. It is one of only a few known prototypes to have
avoided that gruesome fate.
Car 0139’s provenance has
been authenticated though interviews of
Jim Frank (1986),
Fred Goodell (1988) and
Carroll Shelby (2003), and also by
original Shelby American documents including the Production
Order (12/07/1966), Vehicle Tax Register (03/31/1967),
Repair Invoice #5040 (06/20/1967),
Vehicle Fixed Asset Ledger
(07/31/1967), Ionia move planning notes (circa 07/1967)
provided by the Carroll Shelby Foundation.
Previously owned by Jamie
Ventrella (Wheeling, IL), Richard Kot (Riverwoods, IL), Volo
Auto Museum (IL) ‘03 and Dana Mecum (IL) ‘07. In 2009,
the current caretakers acquired the car and conducted a
year of research to document the prototype’s unique history.
The convertible was then sent to a concours judge to perform the historically-correct restoration
with the assistance and supervision of SAAC ’67 head judge
The extensive history,
documentation and photographs of car 0139 can be viewed online at