While you can certainly get convertible supercars like the DBS Superleggera these days, the Porsche 911 Speedster isn’t your typical convertible. And its reputation looms large enough to have inspired several kit cars and fan recreations. But Shelby American wants Mustang owners to get in on the fun, too. Which is why it just announced the Shelby Super Snake Speedster.
Shelby is giving the 2021 Super Snake Mustang the Speedster treatment
The Super Snake name should be familiar to Shelby fans. It first appeared on a supercharged 1966 427 Cobra; Shelby made two, and only one still exists. And since then, the beloved tuning company has put it on its most extreme builds, from Mustangs to high-power F-150s. But it’s never appeared on a Mustang convertible, the Detroit Free Press reports, until now.
Mechanically, the 2021 Shelby Super Snake Speedster is the same as the coupe, Road & Track reports. Under its hood is a supercharged version of the Mustang GT’s 5.0-liter V8, which normally makes 460 hp, Autoblog reports. But thanks to the supercharger, a Borla exhaust, and an upgraded cooling system, it now makes 825 hp on 93-octane fuel.
That’s 65 more horsepower than the Shelby Mustang GT500 makes. And it all goes to the rear wheels via either Ford’s six-speed manual or 10-speed automatic. Plus, it gives the Speedster a 0-60 mph time of 3.5 seconds, Roadshow reports.
To help control the extra horsepower, the Shelby Super Snake Speedster and coupe have performance half-shafts, upgraded Brembo brakes with a dedicated duct cooling system, and Ford Performance’s Track Handling Pack. The latter gives the Speedster lowered and sportier springs and shocks, upgraded suspension components, jounce bumpers, and stiffer sway bars.
Shelby adds “performance-spec” tires on top of that, along with transmission-specific upgrades. Automatic Super Snake Speedsters get an additional transmission oil cooler, while manual ones get a one-piece driveshaft and a short-throw shifter. And besides the tonneau cover, the Speedster also comes with sportier seats, new gauges, and both a rear spoiler and a rear diffuser.
It’s a limited-edition model that’s going to cost you
The 2021 Shelby Super Snake Speedster and coupe come on what would’ve been Carroll Shelby’s 98th birthday, Motor1 reports. In honor of that, the company is only making 98 examples of each. And while the Speedster retains the Ford factory warranty, and Shelby provides its own 3-year/36,000-mile one, the car isn’t cheap.
Shelby can convert any 2018 or newer Mustang GT convertible into a Super Snake Speedster, R&T reports. Assuming you’re starting with a brand-new one, the total cost is $133,785; the conversion alone costs $79,995. And Shelby also offers a $4995 options package that includes a widebody kit, Penske track suspension, a rear-seat delete with a harness bar, and painted stripes.
How does the Shelby Super Snake Speedster compare to the latest Porsche 911 Speedster?
Interestingly, the 2021 Shelby Super Snake Speedster will be rarer than the most recent Porsche 911 Speedster. And more powerful.
Porsche has never made the 911 Speedster in large quantities. The German automaker made just 356 examples of the 997-gen 2010 model, Automobile reports. And it only made 1948 examples of the 2019 991-gen Speedster, MotorTrend reports.
As far as power, the 2019 Porsche 911 Speedster is essentially an open-roof version of the contemporary GT3, MT reports. Its rear-mounted 4.0-liter flat-six makes ‘just’ 502 hp and 346 lb-ft. However, it redlines at 9000 RPM.
But because the 2019 911 Speedster weighs less than 3400 pounds, it goes 0-60 mph in 3.7 seconds, Car and Driver reports. And despite having a power disadvantage, the 991-gen 911 Carrera S beat the Shelby GT350 Mustang’s time around Laguna Seca, MT reports.
However, not only will the 2021 Shelby Super Snake Speedster be rarer than Porsche’s Speedster, it’s actually going to be cheaper. The 2019 car stickered at just over $284k, Car and Driver reports. And 2010 models trade on Bring a Trailer for around $225k.
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