2017 SHELBY SUPER SNAKE

This 750-horsepower convertible was carefully customised in Melbourne for proud Tauranga owner, Sharlene.

So, what exactly is this car? 
It’s an NZ-new Mustang convertible that has been completely rebuilt as a 50th Anniversary Shelby Super Snake. That makes it unique in New Zealand. The Whipple supercharger kit boosts the V8 to 750 horsepower and many of the body components are Shelby-specific. The wheels are polished 20-inch Vision Super Snake alloys. 

The main reasons you bought this car?
I always wanted a Shelby Mustang, and I also wanted a convertible. When the new Mustang convertible came out on the Australasian market in RHD, I bought one from a Christchurch dealer and had it shipped directly to Mustang Motorsport in Melbourne for the transformation. 

When did you buy it?
The wait time from ordering the base car in June 2016 to receiving the completed car in Tauranga was 521 days and I made two trips to Melbourne to direct the customisation. 

Any stand-out features you particularly like?
I had to choose between 650 and 750 horsepower, and I went for 750. It sounds better(!) and everyday driveability is fine. 

How often do you use it?
If it’s dry, I use it all the time. I don’t drive it in the wet, mainly because I’m worried about what other drivers are doing on the roads, and a lot of people get up close to have a good look. 

Your longest trip in this car to date?
The drive from Tauranga to Napier for this weekend. Other than that, Tauranga to Lake Tarawera. 

Who carries out the servicing?
My local Ford dealer, although I’m very specific about who drives the car while it’s there. It’s only done 5,500km but has just had its first 15k annual service. 

What feedback have you had from other car enthusiasts?
I have a lot of carpark conversations. Most are with middle-aged and older guys who recognise it as a Shelby and are surprised that it’s RHD – and that a woman’s driving it. Some people have misconceptions about a car that has so much power, expecting you to be constantly working to keep it under control. It’s not like that at all. 

Have you previously owned other special-interest vehicles?
My first car was a Triumph Spitfire, and that was followed by a Mazda MX-5. 

What was the first car you drove, and where did you drive it?
My father taught me to drive in his 1976 Mustang in Mangere, on back roads out by the airport when the area was undeveloped.

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