This identification / buyers guide has been written for those interested in the 1965 Ford Mustang Shelby GT 350. The 1965 Shelby GT 350 represents one of Americas most desirable muscle cars, and being the first Shelby Mustang it is extremely rare, with very low production numbers. Many features of the GT 350 can however be easily replicated on a standard mustang fastback of the same year, and it is important that as a potential purchaser or restorer that you accurately identify the vehicle.
This guide provides a full scope of identification criteria for the Shelby GT 350, including external and interior features to look for, through to correct chassis and engine number details to review.
A few statistics for the GT 350 are outlined below:
Number Produced: 562 (3 prototypes, 515 street production cars, 35 competition models, 9 drag cars)
Period of Manufacture: 1965
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The following external features should be present on a genuine 1965 Shelby GT 350, and make a good starting point for identification of an original vehicle:
General Body Features:
Badging & Decals:
The 1965 Mustang Shelby GT 350 had the following original interior features as listed below:
The 1965 Shelby GT 350 was only available in one colour:
This colour came with blue GT 350 side stripes, and optional Le Mans stripes over the whole car. A few examples of the colour are given in the images.
The Ford Mustang Shelby G.T. 350 will have two relevant chassis numbers, one being a Shelby VIN, and one a Ford VIN. Their form and location are outlined below.
Shelby VIN/Serial/Chassis number:
The correct VIN for a 65 GT350 will be in the following format: SFM5SXXX
S = Shelby / F = Ford / M = Mustang / 5 =Model Year 1965 / S = Street / XXX= The consecutive production number.
Location of numbers on vehicle:
Note, door data plates were not installed in the Shelby GT350, as was the case with several other mustang models.
Ford VIN/Serial/Chassis number:
The correct Ford VIN for a 65 GT350 Fastback will be in the following format:5R09K XXXXXX
5 = Model year 1965 / R = Assembly Plant (San Jose) / 09 = Body Code (2-door fastback) or 09 (for convertible) / K = Engine Code (289/271hp) / XXXXXX = Individual Ford production number specific to that car.
Locations on body:
The Ford Mustang chassis number was also printed on the engine block of the car, making it particularly handy for those who want to confirm whether a car has its original engine.
The VIN stamping on the engine block is located on the passenger side of the block, at the front, beneath the front exhaust port. You will see the VIN stamped just near the edge of the block. See images for further details. As noted, if the engine is indeed original, the stamped number should match that of the Ford VIN per the stamping locations outlined in number 4 above.
As previously detailed above, the correct Ford VIN for a 1965 GT 350 will be in the following format: 5R09K XXXXXX
Note - 1966 model blue block is used in the images for example purposes only. The 1965 GT 350 cars had black engine blocks as standard.
An original GT 350 should have the following mechanical features: