Shelby door panels: It’s all about being period correct

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Update by Tim Suddard to the Ford Mustang Fastback project car
Jan 4, 2023 | Ford, Mustang, HSR, Historic Sportscar Racing, Vintage Race Car, Cobra Automotive

Vintage racing seems more bound by traditions than rules. For example, HSR’s rule book didn’t list any set rules regarding the interior prep of our Ford Mustang vintage racer, but the general consensus in the paddock is that cars from the ’60s should have their interiors largely in place.

And in the case of the Mustang, there were some precedents set as the race-ready, R-Model Shelbys sported lightweight aluminum door panels instead of the factory pieces.

Cobra Automotive now offers laser-cut aluminum inner door panels (part No. 273-DP1 in its catalog) for $399.99 per pair. They fit well and saved us hours of measuring, drilling and cutting our own.

While we did install much of the rear trim, we took the time to cut out the heavy rear seat mounting tabs as well as the exceedingly heavy rear quarter panel air vent hardware and trim. We also removed the dome lights from the rear quarter trim panels and sold them at a local swap meet.

Early Shelbys also replaced the rear seat area with a panel. Our car came with this rear panel, so we trimmed it to fit around our greatly expanded roll cage before reinstalling it.

We were quite pleased with how this all turned out as the interior now looks period correct while saving a few pounds, too.

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David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
1/4/23 9:50 a.m.

Love how these incoprorate some of the original trim, too. I have seen these IRL, and they're much cooler than the usual full-tin look. 

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