Car Culture & Entertainment

The Reader-Voted Top 10 Cars of the 1960s: #6 – Everyone’s Favorite Car Named After a Woman

 
1967 Ford Mustang GT500 Eleanor

(Image/Classiccarlabs.com)

Editor’s Note: The decade of the 1960s is considered by many to be the greatest in American automotive history. There’s little mystery why. The 1960s gave birth to the “muscle car wars” and game-changing performance pony cars. Legends like the Pontiac GTO, Ford Mustang, Chevy Camaro, HEMI-powered Mopars, and several others. How does one choose which is best? Controversially, we’re guessing. That’s why you’re taking some of the heat, too. We sync’d up with our friends on Summit Racing’s social media team to put the question out to their Facebook and Instagram audiences: What is the top car of the 1960s? The countdown to #1 continues.

 

You wouldn’t think necessarily that a movie remake from the year 2000 starring Nic Cage could redefine an automotive legend, but that’s exactly what Gone in Sixty Seconds did.

Eleanor.

There might be a person or two who can’t instantly recall the gorgeous silver 1967 Shelby GT500 fastback that very realistically jumped an obscene number of cars during the climactic final driving scene toward the end of the movie, but you’re probably not friends with them.

The 1967 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 was already among the most exquisitely shaped motor vehicles in existence. Becoming Eleanor made it mythical.

The 1967 Mustang redesign wasn’t radically dissimilar from the original 1964½ model, but certain styling upgrades implemented by Carroll Shelby for the GT500—such as the hood scoop, separate high-beam headlamps in the grille, a thin chrome front bumper, new horizontal taillights, an integrated rear spoiler, and rear brake-cooling scoops—created a distinctive look that makes even the most stubborn Chevy fan think: “I want one.”

The 1967 GT500 is the first-ever GT500. The car was powered by a 428 cubic-inch (7.0L) Ford Cobra V8 engine with two Holley four-barrels perched up top.

Shelby Automotive Inc. produced 2,048 GT500s in 1967, and we own zero of them.

But maybe someday.

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