Wednesday, October 04, 2017

Grandma drove this GT 350 “until ’77, when it got kind of run down. She stuck it in the garage and said ‘I’ll work on it later.’ 28 years later: ‘You know that car that Grandma has in the garage?’ and the grandson’s like, ‘Oh, the one with all the cardboard boxes and carpet on it?’” That's when the GT350 got a 2nd life and sympathetic exterior restoration

A father and son headed to Los Angeles to watch cars like theirs in action.

 Prior to the event, on the advice of restorer Jeff Dunn, he excavated the car, removed the glovebox door and took it with him for ­Carroll Shelby to sign.

 “I have a photo of me and my 12-year-old son with Carroll Shelby as he signed the glovebox, with Carroll shaking my son’s hand. After that weekend, I was like: ‘That’s it.’

“It was a month after that that we pulled the car out of the garage, took it to Dunn’s shop and began the 18-month restoration. But that’s what got me started: going down to the SAAC event, watching all the guys with their cars and saying, ‘Well, I have one of these, but it’s not ready to drive.’”

6S289 didn’t receive your typical overrestoration. “We went through it and took it right down to the metal. If you look at it today, the thing is super straight … there are no dimples or dings anywhere on the car.” But, Lopez notes: “The interior is original. In the back, it’s got the hump I sat on when I was 7 years old on that test drive. It has patina; the driver’s seat has a little split in it. I wanted the car to look like it’s in showroom condition when you walk up to it, but I wanted to keep some of the history, too. That’s why I left the interior intact—the way it was.”

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