We look back on the classic muscle car era with rose-colored glasses. Oh sure, there were hulking V8 engines, leaded gas, and smoking tires, but that doesn't mean the cars were as quick as we might remember. Today, there are mid-size family sedans that are quicker to 60 than muscle-car royalty. But one might think that at the very least, a muscle car could beat a combine harvester, especially when that muscle car is a famed Shelby GT350.
One is a track-ready coupe, complete with a mean set of stripes and a 302-cubic-inch V8 engine. The other is a piece of farm equipment. This one, though, just happens to have a 500-ci, 500-horsepower V8. No, this 1967 Fahr M44 is not entirely stock.
Petri Plosila, a crazy Finn, swiped the engine from a 1976 Cadillac Eldorado, fit it to a combine, and then sold his creation to a Norwegian. That man, Harald Bore, describes himself as “a little drunk” at the time of purchase, which is a fair excuse for purchasing a 4,000-pound combine that has a top speed of 95 miles per hour. Akevitt does funny things to a person, after all.
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We can only presume that Norway's preferred spirit was on the table when Barcroft Cars decided to match up the modified Fahr with a 1968 Shelby Mustang for a race. The fastback Shelby needs no introduction, but we'll give it one anyway. One of the most iconic cars from the heyday of American muscle, the 1968 GT350 marked a significant change from the 1967. Ford replaced its 289-ci plant and Holley four-barrel carburetor in favor of a 302-ci V8/four-barrel… which was less powerful. The old 289 packed 306 hp, but the 302 was down to around 250 hp.
We won't spoil the results of the race (you can probably guess the outcome), but there's something comical about the Highland Green Mustang running down the strip next to the front-wheel-drive harvester, Plosila mounted high and up front at the near-horizontal tiller. Check out the video to see what we mean.