5k: 1987 Shelby Lancer #388

The Shelby Lancer was based on Dodge’s compact Lancer 5 door hatchback (yes a Chrysler K-platform car!!) but assembled by Carroll Shelby’s technicians in his Whittier, CA plant.  Please don’t confuse it with the later Lancer Shelby – which was built the following year by Chrysler in its Sterling Heights, MI Dodge plant, because this is the real deal complete with a plaque containing the late great Texan’s embossed signature.  This 1987 Shelby Lancer is #388 of 800 built, sports a manual gearbox and is for sale for $1400 via the Roverclassics.com website (thanks to tip from DT reader IgnatiusReilly).

That’ll buff right out.  Seriously, I know this guy, he’s got an incredible set of buffers and polishes and cutting compound and nano-technology butter creme brulee based waxes…and there is not a damn thing anyone can do about this paint because it is shot.  Done.  Deader than Jerry Sandusky’s in-home daycare permit application.

The standard Lancer was a horribly slow car – but Shelby did his usual magic, this time by adding a turbo and intercooler – boosting the 2.2 liter inline 4 to 175 horsepower and 175 ft-lbs of torque.  It won’t make the front wheel drive car a Ferrari-killer, but it does sharpen the tip of the Lance. 

Mr Shelby also included his own custom steering wheel as a constant reminder that you are driving something he deemed acceptable to brand with his logo and charge you twice the standard car MSRP – but if you are buying this used for $1400 – you are getting all that sweet Shelby love for next to nothing!  Similar to the exterior – the interior of this car needs a thorough cleaning, de-scuzzing and probably new seats/carpet/dash.  The standard Lancer bits should fit right in – but most K-platform cars were crushed years ago due to their abysmal reliability records, so finding one in the junkyard may be tricky.

Seriously – nothing you will do can bring this paint back to life; it is deader than Mel Gibson’s acting career.  It spent just one too many days baking in the hot sun or screaming into its ex-baby-momma’s answering machine.  And if you intend to repaint this classic – you’d better pick the stock Graphic Red or else face the wrath of angry Shelby fans at the next Shelby & Shotguns event because they only ever came in this one color.  Personally, we’d be tempted to just leave the paint as-is and fix the mechanicals/interior and use this is a daily driver.

See another Shelby wreck for sale?  email us here:  tips@dailyturismo.com