The Shelby Coupes
Designation: "EXP 500"


updated 1/11/19

By Craig Jackson, Jason Billups, Paul Newitt and Peter Disher
Assistance provided by the Shelby American Automobile Club

The Green Hornet
Designation: "EXP 500"

I will be the first to admit, I have had questions about the second Shelby coupe. After becoming involved with the second restoration of the car, those questions were answered. Paul Newitt is the person most responsible for recognizing the historical significance of the car and his work should be recognized. This car would also be used as a model for the California Special. Martin Euler originally restored the car and did an excellent job preserving the history.

Unlike Little Red, the Green Hornet would not receive a Shelby serial number. There is no doubt that the car was a Shelby. Serial number 8F01S104288 would be one of the first cars to recieve a 428 Cobra Jet engine. The car was also equipped with Conelec fuel injection system.

The original build sheet for the car that would become the Green Hornet. Like Little Red, before the Green Hornet was also updated during its time in the Engineering department.

This photo first appeared in the Shelby American magazine. The car appears with a light paint job and the "EXP 500" stripes. You can also see the later style reflectors on the rear quarter panels. Although this an early built car, the quarter panels were "updated" to bring the car inline with mid year changes to the bodystyle.

Martin Euler restored the Green Hornet more than 30 years ago. He did an excellent job based on the information available at the time. The independent rear suspension was recreated. The original Conelec fuel injection systems were obsolete and would not be found until many years after his restoration.

This paper shows Fred Goodell, Shelby's Chief Engineer was still using the car in 1970. This was after the Shelby program shut down.

Here is one of the more interesting discoveries made during the second restoration of the Green Hornet. The original green color. The color included several coats of candy. The candy color actually darkens the paint and adds the metallic flakes.

The car debuted at the 2018 Muscle Car and Corvette Nationals in Chicago. This is one of the biggest shows of the year. The car now sports an accurate metallic green, candy paint job. This color was actually found underneath previous repaints. You will also notice the two colored rocker stripes have changed. No evidence for these could be documented. This car has a spray on vinyl top just like the earlier coupe.

One of things that really persuaded me was much of the original interior remains intact. Original seats and headliner remained in the car.

All of the people that restored this car strived for accuracy. When you have a car that was constantly changing at the factory, it's hard to determine what is "correct". This engine is unbelievable. The car retains its original Cobra Jet heads. An experimental "XE" cast iron intake manifold and a pair of "XE" exhaust manifolds were also used. You would not be able to duplicate this collection of rare parts. The car has working AC and a complete Thermactor emissions system.

Once the Conelec Electronic fuel Injection was installed, the engine actually made more horsepower and produced more torque. Although gas mileage is not a concern, it too is most likely better.

A small display case with some very rare, Conelec EFI parts was also at the show. Currently, there are only three cars running the original EFI system.

The Green Hornet and Little Red are both ready to represent the most unique time in muscle car history. Please feel free to contact me if you have any information on these cars!