Lady and the Beast

The Lady: Scottsdale’s Lynn Smith.

The Beast: A Shelby Daytona Coupe from John Panfil’s Anthem Motors.

Smith and husband Barry accepted delivery last October of the super-car from Panfils’s north Phoenix company.

The continuation car is a natural for a woman who has loved horsepower since she was a child in North Carolina. A horse rider, she had her pilot’s license by the time she was 25. She’s also parachuted 99 times out of airplanes — two jumps with malfunctions.

“My love for cars began when I was 16,” she recalls. “My dad used to take me on obstacle courses and I learned to drive defensively — as well as a little dare devilish.” Then, in 1970, she drove her first Shelby Cobra: “It rose off the ground.” A former marketing professional with Warner Brothers, she met Barry in Maryland, and they’ve been married for 13 years.

Lynn’s Daytona is based on the 1965 racing legend, of which only six were produced — all to beat Enzo Ferrari on the great tracks of Europe. Completed in July 2007, the continuation rolling chassis vehicle (minus engine and transmission) is from American Legends, a Shelby/ Superformance dealer. Anthem Motors installs the engine and transmission at its shop and showroom, 21242 N Black Canyon Highway in north Phoenix.

Panfil’s six-year-old company builds and services a wide variety of high-performance and exotic vehicles: continuations, resto mod classic muscle cars, modern sportscars and the Roush family of performance engines and parts. For the Daytona and other models, Superformance provides the Carroll Shelby-approved chasses from its Elizabeth, South Africa, factory and ships them to American Legends. Only about 120 of the Coupes have been built.

A Hot Lady in One Hot Ride

Meticulously serviced and maintained, Lynn’s new Daytona has just 1,600 miles, although with her driving is often less than ladylike. Obeying all applicable laws, of course, she drives it the way a horsepower beast was meant to be driven: fashionable flats to the metal and all six forward speeds tested to jewel-like potential.

Featuring a glovebox signed by Shelby, the interior is equipped with climate control, including air conditioning, Shelby insignia, front and rear cargo carpets, Simpson platinum seat restraints, thick-rimmed and leather-trimmed steering wheel, an integrated roll bar and a fire extinguisher with a hatchback that has plenty of room for those aggressive shopping days.

Anthem Motors also installed a Porsche cupholder for her water bottles before and after her gym work-outs as well as a world-class CD audio system. The company also installed a push-button entry so that the car can be manually, as well as remotely, opened. “It feels safe,” she says, “and makes the car more practical.”

For front-end rock chip protection, a 3M clearbra has been installed, and underneath, Anthem has fitted Second Skin noise and heat-control material, which quiets the interior and insulates it from the excess heat this car can produce — especially in the hot desert.

Lynn’s Daytona is only one of five painted in Amulet Red. The custom interior has black leather seats with tan inserts and red piping. The headliner and dashboard are in racy black Alcantara, the sidepipes are black and the headlights are trimmed in black.

“I didn’t want any racing stripes,” Lynn notes, with a smile. “They cut the car in half.” After all, a lady, albeit a speed-loving one, still needs to make the correct mobile fashion statement.

She and Barry also have a 550 Porsche Spyder; an ’05 Porsche Boxster; and an Infiniti SUV in which Lynn the mom takes daughter Whitney to school, ice-skating, dance lessons and other events.

Last year, The Smiths took possession of a one-of-a-kind-in-the-world Sport Speciale Spyder (featured in the January issue of “Highline”) inspired by the ‘59–‘66 Ferrari Testa Rossa. The car was built ground up by Creative Workshop of Dania Beach, Fla., with fine-tuning and maintenance by Anthem Motors. “If I have ever seen a $1.4 million-plus car, this is it,” John says. “We service all of the Smiths’ cars, but for them to trust us with this very special car is the highest of compliments regarding the quality of work we do at Anthem Motors.”

When Lynn the racer wants to skate along the asphalt in her Daytona, she’s got a fuel-injected Roush 427R to call on — a proven street monster. Top speed is 220 mph. “This motor uses a NASCAR- style block with cylinder bump-outs that enable the block wall to retain its thickness around the cylinder, thus preventing heat damage,” John explains.

Automotive eye-candy, a polished “8-stack” sits on top of the powerplant — enabling fuel injection with eight throttle bodies. The thundering result: 550 horses and 535 pound feet of torque at 6200 rpm. “The rumble this motor produces out of the dual inset black side pipes is truly music to an enthusiast’s ears,” he says.

The transmission is the robust T56 6-speed, allowing Lynn to civilly cruise on the highway and have, as John notes, “tons of fun in the twisties.” Bilstein coil-over shocks conduce to superior handling, and the brakes are large four-wheel discs that employ a brake vacuum pump.

The assembly was to usual Anthem Motors standards: “We build cars here with a great attention to detail,” he explains. “We use safety wire on all key components (headers, wheel knockoffs, etc.), install scatter shields over the clutch housing and mark all nuts and bolts after they have been torqued down correctly.”

Making Ferrari Sorry

Don’t get a Ford overheated.

That’s the story behind the Daytona Coupe. In the early ‘60s, Henry Ford II approached Enzo Ferrari to buy the company, offering the car legend oodles of lira for the already legendary marque. After consideration, Ferrari said “No, grazie” and sent Ford II on his way back to his father’s home country.

Miffed, Ford turned to Carroll Shelby for help and revenge. Shelby in turn asked Peter Brock to design the original coupe. Shelby had been racing with the muscular Cobras, but they weren’t meeting the demands of European endurance racing such as LeMans, the coveted long-distance jewel.

Brock, along with a team that included the late Bob Negstad, designed and built only six coupes to compete at the 24 hours of LeMans — in just six months. The Daytonas competed very successfully against Ferrari — doing well at Lemans and winning the prestigious World Manufacturers’ Championship in 1965.

Satisfied with the showings, Ford went in other racing directions, and the six cars themselves scattered. All of these originals are in collections today — and priceless.

Fortunately, about eight years ago, Superformance hired Peter Brock to redesign the coupe as a street vehicle. Even Carroll Shelby, who’s often had to fight to preserve his legendary name against other manufacturers intent on riding it to profits, signed on, satisfied that the continuation vehicle at least equaled the potent original.

“Pete took this opportunity with Carroll Shelby & Superformance on board to correct a number of design flaws that were unavoidable due to the impossibly short time frame available to design the original car,” John explains. This time he designed the car right. He designed the car he really wanted to build — and now it’s available to any passionate enthusiast to enjoy.”

For instance, the body has been stretched three inches, and the car is also higher and wider than the original. It’s a light but tough fiberglass body on a lightweight alloy frame: Curb weight is about 3,000 pounds. Negstad, who also helped with the famed GT-40 and 427 Cobra suspensions, offered the tight suspension design.

“It’s got a great transmission, lots of storage and it’s very smooth with an unbelievable sound,” says Lynn, who will be showing it at the Arizona Women’s Expo, April 19 and 20, at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale.

That’s also what she tells her ogling girlfriends who think it’s too much of a monster man-car — even for tough professional gals. “It’s as easy as the SUV to drive, I tell them — and a lot more fun.”