April 1, a street-legal version of the 428 cid V8 CJ "Cobra Jet" drag car debuts as the Shelby GT-500KR. Inspired by Rhode Island dealer/race car builder Bob Tasca, the "King of the Road" is rumored to produce 400 horsepower. A Ram Air induction setup was installed, as noted by the hood scoop and black hood stripe. The transmission options were a 4-speed manual or six-speed automatic. There was an initial run of 50 units inspired by Ford dealer and Mustang racer Bob Tasca's efforts, but eventually 2,253 CJ Fastbacks and 564 CJ coupes were produced. Note the new, functional C-pillar vents.
Forty years ago, at the 1967 New York Auto Show, Ford introduced the most powerful Shelby Mustang ever. The 1968 Shelby Cobra GT500KR was a mid-year introduction, based on the 1968 Shelby GT500. Ford added ‘Cobra’ to the Shelby’s moniker to help usher in the beginning of a new performance era at the company. The Cobra name referred to the new 428 Cobra Jet V-8 that was planted under the KR’s custom fiberglass hood. It was the engine that would once again vault the Mustang to the head of the pack.
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