History of the 2nd Gen SVT GT500
History of the 2nd Gen SVT Shelby Mustang GT500 (2010-2014)
The second generation of the Special Vehicle Team (SVT) Shelby Mustang’s GT500 first saw its debut in 2010, intending to build off the first generation by refining its performance to deliver the most powerful Mustang to date. Carroll Shelby spoke on the release of the second generation 2010 GT500 saying that his goal was to build off the GT500KR and create a truly special car that people could have fun driving. The second generation of the SVT Shelby produced upgrades to the initial model from 2010 to 2014 and ultimately culminated on the 2013/2014 Shelby 1000.
History of the SVT Shelby Mustang (2nd Gen)
Starting the second generation of SVT Shelby Mustangs was a product of the partnership between Ford’s SVT and Carroll Shelby, and ultimately based off the design of the 2010 GT500 on the original model from 2006. The major difference between the generations was that all the new models were now based on the S-197 II platform, which offered more appeal for its style, and a significant upgrade to the horsepower output.
True to the name Shelby, the new 2010 GT500 placed a great deal of importance on performance by using a supercharged 5.4-liter dual overhead cam V8 engine, which managed to deliver 540 horsepower along with 510 foot-pounds of torque. In addition, to reduce the air restrictions on the engine, the car uses Shelby’s open-element air induction system which uses a cone-like air filter rather than the traditional flat filter. These design choices led to an increase in the engine’s efficiency and horsepower.
To improve drivability and reduce NVH, the twin-disc clutch on the manual transmission was improved by increasing the diameter by 35 mm while upgrading the materials used to ensure a sturdier build. A unique aspect of this new clutch system was the usage of six straps to control the engagement of the clutch’s intermediate disc. Finally, the SVT made sure that despite the improvements on the NVH, the distinct sound of a Shelby would still carry through to let people know that the car was something special.
Evolutions and Changes Year-By-Year
SVT worked with Shelby from 2010 to 2014 to make sure that they would be able to deliver a powerful Mustang upgrade that would be enough to provide a clear distinction between each model. The improvements that were made through the second generation were substantial for performance and were only possible due to SVT’s efforts in building on each year’s model.
2011/2012 Ford Shelby Mustang GT500
Taking inspiration from the 2011 V6 and GT Mustangs, the 2011 GT500 got an engine upgrade that consisted of a 32-Valve supercharged aluminum V8, which was significantly lighter than a typical cast-iron engine by 102 lb. This engine also took advantage of Ford’s plasma transferred wire arc technology (PTWA). These upgrades to the GT500’s engine were enough to avoid the Gas Guzzler Tax by increasing the miles per gallon that the car could achieve to 15 mpg in the city.
Ford was also able to improve the model’s handling by lowering the stance of the vehicle by 8 mm in the rear and 11 mm in the front, which lowered the model’s center of gravity. The car also was given Ford’s Electric Power Assist Steering (EPAS), which helped increase the precision of the car’s steering.
The car also came with the option to opt-in for the SVT Performance Package that along with “19x9.5 forged wheels with P265/40R19 front tires, and “20x9.5 forged aluminum wheels with P285.35R20 rear tires, included a rear spoiler Gurney Flap and a new pedal box. The package also came with tuned rear springs and shocks as well as an underbody aerodynamic shield.
The 2012 variant of this model did not see great change but did add a new customization option for Recaro seats.
2011 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 Super Snake
As part of a collaboration between Shelby American and Ford Racing, the 2011 Shelby GT500 Super Snake was born to produce a more powerful variant of the 2011 Shelby GT500. For this Ford redesigned the GT500 to cut down its weight and therefore increase the total horsepower available to the engine.
The Super Snake package, which has been offered since 1967, has always been able to turn stock GT500s into supercharged variants that offer greater performance, and the 2011 version is no different. Due to the lighter frame, Shelby was able to deliver a far more agile car that physically fitted the image of aggression, which is commonly associated with Super Snakes.
This Super Snake was given a 5.4-liter V8 powerplant, with a Kenne Bell supercharger that allowed outputs of over 750 horsepower, but with optional tuning could reach as much as 800 horsepower. Alternatively, the car could also be detuned to limit itself to 675 horsepower for those that were not interested in high horsepower.
2012 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 Super Snake
The 2012 GT500 Super Snake is notable for pushing the image of what a Super Snake was capable of as it was introduced to the world with a stock horsepower of 750, which could be tuned into 800. Unveiled at the New York International Auto Show, the 2012 Super Snake managed to capture the attention of car enthusiasts with a 5.4-liter supercharged V8, that was coupled with a brand new Borla exhaust system.
This car was able to deliver its power through the usage of a set of 3.73:1 rear axles, which channeled power into each of the vehicle’s wheels. Other upgrades saw the car equipped with Baer six-piston calipers, and the addition of the Ford Racing handling package, which saw dynamic adjustable dampers and stabilizer bars.
This model also saw itself turned into the 2012 Ford Mustang Shelby 50th Anniversary GT500 Super Snake, but this variant of the car was only produced 50 units.
2011/2012 Shelby American Shelby 1000
The 2012 Shelby American Shelby 1000 was created in part as the realization of Carroll Shelby’s dream to produce a car that could exceed 1,000 horsepower, and with the help of Ford, the world was introduced to Shelby 1000.
The Shelby 1000 was created as an upgrade to the 2012 Shelby GT500 and came in two versions, one which reached 950 horsepower and one that outputted 1,100. The car was upgraded with a hand-built engine and an improved cooling system, along with other notable additions under the hood. Such upgrades were Shelby performance fuel injectors and Shelby blower grind camshafts.
Unfortunately, the stock GT500 was not capable of withstanding these upgrades so the chassis had to be reinforced to match the new performance. This included frame rails to prevent stress failure, reinforcement to the transmission tunnel, and a Currie rear-axle.
2013/2014 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500
The 2013 Ford Shelby GT500 was created with several upgrades compared to the 2012 GT500, which includes the loss of the grill due to the amount of cooling needed by the car. As for performance, the new 2013 version featured twin fuel pumps, larger fuel injectors, Brembo front disc brakes, and aero changes to help the car reach 200 mph without issue.
An optional performance package was available, which included Bilstein dampers and a Torsen limited-slip rear differential. The 2014 version of the car saw no major changes but did see changes to color customization.
2013/2014 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 Super Snake
Shelby American introduced the 2013 GT500 Super Snake to the world during the Barrett-Jackson auction in 2012, and the new vehicle came in two supercharged engine packages, one of which outputted 662 horsepower, while the other gave 850. As for the engine, the vehicle was fitted with a 5.8-liter Supercharged V8 that allowed the car to go from 0-60 mph in 3.7 seconds. The GT500 Super Snake also did away with the standard Alcoa wheels, and instead used forged aluminum wheels, which were then used on other GT500 variants that were made into Super Snakes.
Notably, the 2013 GT500 Super Snake offered a new option for a Wide Body program, which featured a 13” rear wheel kit to increase the aggressive look of the car. There were no major changes to the 2014 model.
2013/2014 Shelby 1000 AND 1000 S/C
Not being satisfied with the 2012 Shelby 1000, Shelby American was hard at work to manufacture an even more powerful car, the redesigned Shelby 1000 S/C. The 2013 Shelby 1000 S/C was equipped with a 5.8-liter V8 powerplant, which was given several Shelby modifications. The engine’s block featured all forged internals, DOHC cylinder heads, and Shelby/Borla 3-inch pipes attached to the cylinder heads.
A large part of the Shelby 1000 S/C was a 3.6-liter Kenne Bell supercharger, which allowed the car to reach an impressive 1,200 horsepower in its track-ready S/C form. The engine also made use of an upgraded fuel system, which used 72 lb/hr fuel injectors to ensure that the best combustion efficiency was reached.
The increase in performance needed to be matched by an equal increase to the chassis strength, so it was reinforced by driveshaft tunnel braces and aluminum supports. These reinforcements also extended to the suspension and steering systems by adding a Shelby American suspension package.
Finally, the upgraded version of the 2014 Mustang GT500, the 2014 Shelby 1000 saw little change compared to the S/C version. A Wide Body option was also offered for the Shelby 1000.
SVT Shelby Mustang (2nd Gen) Fast Facts
- The production of the 2010 GT500 was limited to 2000 units.
- The 2011 Shelby GT500 offered an optional glass roof.
- The 2011-12 GT500 Super Snake included "Super Snake" vehicle badges and an official Shelby CSM interior plate.
- The 2012 50th Anniversary Edition prototype was sold in 2015.
- The starting price for the 2013 Shelby 1000 S/C is $209,990.
Legacy of the SVT Shelby Mustang (2nd Gen)
The legacy of the SVT Shelby Mustang’s 2nd generation is the 3rd generation, which continued to produce powerful cars in the form of the GT350. The 3rd generation created its success by building off what the GT500 achieved and ultimately ended in the production of the 2020 Shelby GT350SE, which celebrated 55 years since the first Shelby Mustang was made.