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1989 Dodge Shadow: Shelby Equipped


If a Ford Mustang wearing the Shelby badge is out of your price range, there are more affordable options that still wear a Shelby badge. As the Chrysler lineup in the 1980’s can attest, Carroll Shelby was no stranger to the brand’s upstart image, applying his name and thirst for power (and profits) onto many compact cars in the lineup. While the hot-rod Omni GLH Turbo gets much of the fame, the Shadow coupe also underwent a conversion at the hands of Shelby, with cars like this 1989 Shadow CSX here on craigslist in Oklahoma popping up as an affordable modern classic. These later CSXs are desirable for a few reasons, not the least of which include improved torque and reduced turbo lag. The seller is a CSX fanatic, so plenty of spares including a NIB front air dam and the factory alloys are included. Thanks to Dean H. for the find!


  1. Avatar photo grant


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  2. Avatar photo The Walrus

    It amazes me how quick the ignorant are to dismiss the Shelby Dodges. This car had a couple things that were not years, but decades ahead of their time.

    The first is alluded to in the write-up. The improved torque and reduced lag referred to came from the Variable Nozzle Turbo, or VNT. You read stories about how amazingly pioneering and innovative the Porsche Turbo over the last several years is. That is, in fact, just a VNT. Nothing new. Sure computer and materials technology have improved tremendously over the last 25 years, but the concept and application was first to market on the ’89 CSX-VNT.

    The other is the factory wheels. These were not ‘alloys’ as stated in the write-up (unfortunately the post is gone so I can’t see what it said, or a pic to confirm they are correct for an ’89 CSX). What the ’89 CSX VNT had were called ‘FiberRide’. They were in fact composite material and cut unsprung weight dramatically. Shelby Wheel won several industrial awards for the unique application of composite materials.

    Of all the true numbered Shelby Cars (86/87 GLHS, 87/88/89 CSX, 87 Lancer and 89 Dakota), only the 86 GLHS will, over the long haul, be considered more desirable.

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    • Avatar photo Bobsmyuncle

      Great info thanks!

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    • Avatar photo Jeff Staff

      You’re absolutely right, and it did have those wheels. From allpar.com:

      This was the first car ever built with a plastic wheel, called the Fiberide; the 15×6.5 wheel was much lighter than its aluminum counterparts. They were a gleaming gold color, and almost look like a hub cap. Tires were standard Goodyear 195x60R15 with optional 225x50r15 Gatorbacks.

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  3. Avatar photo shiro1303 Member

    Nissan used the VNT turbo on the VG20 series V6’s not sure if they were ever used in the states but my 85 Nissan Gloria had one so while this may have been its first use in a US model car it wasn’t the first mass produced use of one.

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  4. Avatar photo 64 bonneville

    When our oldest daughter graduated high school in 1990, we were going to buy her a car for graduation. She had picked an identical car to this in black at a local dealership. We had made arrangement with our bank to do the financing, and had to bring a sales contract back to pick up the check to take to the dealership. We, meaning I, had test drove it, and reached an agreeable price at around $2900, and went to get the check. Our bank was up from the dealership, about 3 blocks. When we got back to the dealership, I was told that the price was now $3995.00, since we didn’t pay for the car prior to leaving. We left and she ended up with an 86 Buick
    Somerset Coupe. Had the tire smokingest V-6 of anything I had driven.

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  5. Avatar photo PRA4SNW

    I bought an 86 GLH-T(urbo) new and had a blast surprising the hell out of the IROCs and GTs of the time. Lots of torque steer, for sure, but back then you couldn’t buy a car that was more fun than that for the price.

    I really wanted the Shelby GLH-S, but they were hard to find, and expensive.

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