SHELBY MUSTANG ECONOMY?

QA-SHELBY-1

Q:

How many miles per gallon should someone expect from a ’68 Ford Shelby GT-500? Eric Wehner Goldbeach, OR

A:

The majority of ’68 Shelby GT-500s came equipped with 428ci engines, but some had 427-inch versions. Both of these engines were healthy, and fuel economy was not what they were designed to excel at. With the 428 engines boasting 10.6:1 compression ratios and either a Toploader 4-speed or C6 automatic transmission, the 3,445 lb Shelby could expect to get between 9-11 mpg. These figures are based on conservative driving styles and the standard rear axle gearing (3.25:1 with the manual transmission, and 3.50:1 with the automatic.) We doubt too many were ever driven conservatively when new, but a restored example should be able to match these fuel economy figures today. Mark Simpson Managing Editor
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15 Responses to “SHELBY MUSTANG ECONOMY?”

  1. Ed Palmer
    Ed Palmer

    What a silly question! Who cares??? It’s a Shelby. The sad thing is you show a picture of an Eleanor! It’s a freaking movie car! Not a real GT-500. Please show the original some respect!

    Reply
    • Matt Trummer
      Matt Trummer

      Eric I am a little late on this thread but my reaction was just the same. Then I noticed where he lives, treehugger land

      Reply
    • Larry Buckmiller
      Larry Buckmiller

      true….all true there is no use to try to equate any kind of numbers that are attached to this car in any way with this car you just step back and look at this car and wish you had one.

      Reply
  2. keith
    keith

    I owned one for several years 69-74.I always got 10 mpg, just like most vehicles back then.Gas was 50 cents a gallon or less.

    Reply
    • jordan
      jordan

      Knowing what typical gas milage to be expected out of an engine is a good way to diagnose a poorly functioning carb or slipping torque converter. Of course nobody buys this car for the gas milage. I have been wondering if 9 mpg on my stroker 440 6bbl 71 cuda is good with conservative driving. It is barely half of that when I put my foot in it a few times per tank. Great question. Thanks

      Reply
  3. Steve Switzer
    Steve Switzer

    A Shelby owner who needs to ask that question either 1. Can’t afford the car or 2. Doesn’t deserve the car. Regardless of which it is he should give the car to me.

    Reply
  4. EUGENE
    EUGENE

    YOUR FIGURES ON FUEL MILEAGE ARE VERY CLOSE TO WHAT I GET ON MY ORIGINAL 1967 SHELBY WITH 428 ENGINE WITH ORIGINAL PAIR OF 652 C.F.M. CARBS. ALSO HAS THE ORIGINAL 350 REAR AXLE AND ORIGINAL 4 SPEED TOP LOADER TRANSMISSION. AS MENTIONED THESE WERE NOT BUILT FOR ECONOMY. WITH THE 1 TO 1 RATIO IN FOURTH GEAR THE ENGINE REVS. AT CRUISING SPEED. IF A 5 OR 6 SPEED TRANS WITH THE OVERDRIVE GEARS WERE INSTALLED THE FUEL MILES AT CRUISING SPEED COULD PROBABLY BE DOUBLED BUT I AM KEEPING MINE ORIGINAL. I HAVE OWNED IT SINCE 1970 WHEN I COULD BUY SUNOCO 260 FOR ABOUT 36 CENTS A GALLON. I ALSO OWN A 1967 CORVETTE THAT I BOUGHT NEW AND I HAVE ACTUALLY GOT 20 MPH WITH IT WITH 3:70 REAR AXLE AND 4 SPEED. WITH BOTH CARS BEING STOCK MY CORVETTE RAN QUICKER IN THE 1/4 MILE

    Reply
  5. Raymond Stevens
    Raymond Stevens

    We have a 66 gt350 I’m trying to find a dash mount tach that matches the factory but works with aftermarket ignition. Can anybody here point me in the right direction?

    Reply
    • Customer Service
      Customer Service

      Hello Raymond,

      Great question! The ‘Ask an Expert’ section is currently for members of our online community. By becoming a member, you will have access to our expert’s knowledge. With your membership you will also receive discounts on products and hours of Premium video content.

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      Reply
  6. Matt Trummer
    Matt Trummer

    Mark while I am yet to own one I tend to agree with that MPG, on a heavy foot I would estimate 5-8 MPG

    Reply
  7. Wally F.
    Wally F.

    Agree with Ed P. , Matt T. et al… Who cares. I had a 67 GT 350 (“with factory air”) that had an appetite for Supper Shell or Sunoco 260 and gave me about 9 to 11 miles per gallon. The little high stung 289 should be rated in smiles per gallon. And yes…put a real deal photo up next time

    Reply
  8. Joe
    Joe

    Where did you find this guy? If you ever asked a salesman that question in 68” his answer would son, this car is definitely not for you , and walk away!

    Reply
  9. Kevan R Hurd
    Kevan R Hurd

    I owned a 68 Gt 500, 4 speed convertible, from 70 to78. It was truly an awesome car. Leaded premium was 17 cents a gallon and nobody cared about gas mileage! Cruising on Friday and Saturday nights, around Arlington Texas, you could literally see the gas gage go down, was not unusual to go through a whole tank. Probably averaged 8 to 9 mpg.

    Reply