RDLA is a close knit group of designers, writers, photographers and illustrators who share a passion for vintage American racing culture. We come from various backgrounds, cultures and countries, but all of us share the common language of design, and an avid interest in automotive marketing and history. We specialize in branding, corporate and interactive design, multimedia marketing and content, photography, illustration and apparel. Through our deep knowledge and inside research, everything we produce reflects pure authenticity and uncompromising attention to detail.
RDLA is based in El Segundo, the former home of Shelby American and Brock Racing Enterprises. Our design studio is a 1960s racing garage, previously owned by legendary Shelby and BRE driver and CanAm builder John Morton.
From this historic location, we operate a full in-house design studio, and showcase our vintage collection. Because our studio is a working garage, we also store and maintain our GT40 in the original service bay, and work on Shelby classics in our spare time. At RDLA, we don’t just sell American racing culture. We live and celebrate it every day.
616 E FRANKLIN AVE.
EL SEGUNDO, CALIF
We consider vintage automobiles true works of art, and not just in their exterior design. From engines and components to moments that shaped racing history, an artist's canvas can provide a bold new perspective, and transform a passion for a specific model into a pure object of desire.
RDLA is pleased to have London-based fine artist Hans Sures as our collaborator for an exclusive series of original works. Part of the RDLA team since its inception, Hans combines his deep expertise in vintage racing with artistic vision to create outstanding images — each meticulously crafted from blueprints, diagrams, photos and archive material, and personally approved by Carroll Shelby. Prints are available on museum canvas or fine art paper.
New to the RDLA collection is London based photographer Nigel Harniman's Goodwood Daytona's. Available through RDLA, printed on museum grade fine art paper.
To commemorate the 50th anniversary of Carroll Shelby's legendary FIA Championship victory, luxury Swiss watch manufacturer Baume et Mercier joined with Shelby International to develop an exclusive line of limited-edition chronographs. Recruited to assist Baume's internal teams with Shelby design and heritage cues, RDLA soon become a full strategic and creative partner, responsible for all marketing and communications copy, producing fine art for packaging, point of sale and charity auction, designing print collateral, and advising on launch events, narratives and themes.
RDLA also designed and manufactured a special edition Shelby/Baume et Mercier jacket for VIP press attendees at the 2015 international launch in Las Vegas.
Originally designed for the 1965 Shelby American Le Mans team, this fully authentic re-creation is available exclusively from Racing Division LA. Patterned after Allen Grant's personal jacket, our jacket is manufactured in Los Angeles to exact detail, with a limited initial production run of only 200 jackets.
True to the original in every detail, our jacket features a Wimbledon white quilted nylon outer, with a guardsman blue liner and arm strips. Per the original, the jacket also includes a nylon hood that hides beneath the collar. Patches are made to original specifications on 100% cotton twill.
With just over 130 built from 1964-69, the GT40 is not only one of the world's most iconic cars, but also one of the most elusive. Due to this, many drivers who desire a GT turn to a small number of replica manufacturers. Although nearly as rare, high quality replica GTs offer an equally thrilling experience, for less expense than acquiring an original.
RDLA is the proud owner of a replica GT40 entirely restored in house. Built on an all-aluminum monocoque chassis, the body, paint and interior trim closely matches the GTs that rolled out from the Shelby race shop in El Segundo. Power is provided by an original K-Code full race hipo 289, taken from the prototype Shelby street GT350 (serial number 5S003), which is the first Shelby Mustang. As our tribute to a very special chapter in Shelby history, our GT regularly appears at marketing and track events throughout the West.
The R-Model is considered the holy grail of Shelby Mustangs. With only 36 ever made, it's easy to see why. When Ford tapped Carroll Shelby to turn their secretary's docile car into a champion racer, Shelby American went to work. To meet homologation rules that required the production of at least 100 "street" cars, Shelby American made all the modifications necessary for street production. From this, SA implemented further changes to their street GT350 — including engine, interior, fuel and body — to create the R-Model GT350.
Starting with a standard 1966 Mustang Fastback, RDLA designed the world's first and only nut and bolt exact replica of this iconic race car. The 3-year restoration resulted in the most accurate R Model replica ever created, as stated by Carroll Shelby and Rick Kopec, former president of the Shelby American Automobile Club.
Racing Division has a long history of identifying co-branding opportunities, (The Shelby Felt Bicycle and the Shelby Harley Davidson collection) the Vans & Shelby collaboration is no exception.
Our intent was to develop a new category in Vans’ co-branded line, via a design and marketing collaboration between two legendary SoCal brands that grew up together: Vans and Shelby American.
The goal is to combine their similar heritage, style and California DNA to create a new range of casual shoes for the automotive enthusiast, with possible extensions to apparel, pro-level driving shoes and special editions.
What Vans and Shelby have in common go beyond a shared design ethos. Their history, attitude and fan base are remarkably similar, which will make for a more natural and inventive partnership. It also makes Vans the one shoe/apparel brand able to understand Shelby from the inside out.
RDLA had the honor of creating the official book for the Petersen Automotive Museum tribute to Carroll Shelby, which served as our final gift to Carroll after so many years of partnership and camaraderie.
To celebrate his life, we chose a collection of quotes from Carroll himself, each defining a unique period in his storied career. This was matched to large scale photography to create an elegant book of remembrance for those who knew and admired him most.
2015 will be the 50th anniversary of Shelby American's historic victory at the FIA World Sportscar Championship. It was a success that not only restored America's racing prestige, but realized Shelby's dream to conquer European racing, especially the untouchable Ferrari team.
To set the stage for a series of tributes, including a partnership with Goodwood, Shelby asked RDLA to create a book that captures the true significance of the 1965 season. By going beyond the statistics to highlight the drivers, teams and moments of courage, Spirit of '65 serves as the perfect guide to one of the greatest racing victories of all time.
As agency of record for Carroll Shelby Licensing since 2006, RDLA has enjoyed responsibility for creating the design and style guides that unify the Shelby brand. This included an assignment by Shelby American to document every model built at its Las Vegas location, for which RDLA provided art direction, photography, layout and design.
Currently, RDLA is at the core of Shelby in both its modern and vintage marketing channels. Projects have included logo development, new product concepts, cross-media design and branding, co-branding and partnership initiatives, and six websites to date. RDLA also created the first Shelby TV commercial.
During our work on the Shelby style guides, RDLA was asked to take on the historic task of recreating all of the original Shelby logos in a modern digital format. Working from old photos, and even scraps of paper found in the Shelby archives, our team hand rendered each logo to exact detail, then undertook a conversation to high resolution eps format.
To give licensees direction for correct logo usage, RDLA was then asked to develop a style guide that combined visual specifications with the accurate story of each logo's heritage and meaning. This guide became the primary tool for ensuring honest, integrated storytelling in all channels, and is used to educate new licensees about Shelby heritage.
Created for the 50th anniversary celebration of Shelby American, Speed Merchants of Venice is an exclusive photographic exhibition and companion book to compliment a major Cobra event held at the NHRA museum in Pomona, California.
To create a fully integrated concept, RDLA designed the exhibition and book to tell a specific chapter in Shelby history: the legendary cars built at Shelby American's Venice facility, which provided the foundation for the Speed Merchants of Venice title. All images were taken from original negatives, many never before published, with text edited by John Morton. Today, the book continues to be a popular guide to early Shelby history, with proceeds continuing to benefit the Carroll Shelby Foundation.
The Goodwood Revival is a three-day festival held each September at Goodwood Circuit since 1998 for the types of road racing cars and motorcycle that would have competed during the circuit's original period—1948–1966. Most people dress in period clothes. It is one of the world's most popular motor race meetings and the only UK event which recreates the golden era of motor sport from the 1950s and 1960s.
The festival acts as a showcase for exceptional wheel-to-wheel racing around a classic circuit, untouched by the modern world and relives the glory days of Goodwood Motor Racing Circuit, which ranked alongside Silverstone as Britain’s leading racing venue throughout its active years. Between 1948 and 1966 Goodwood hosted contemporary racing of all kinds, including Formula One, the famous Goodwood Nine Hours race and the celebrated Tourist Trophy sports car race.
The festival includes Grand Prix cars from the Fifties and Sixties, sports and GT cars, as well as historic saloon cars and little-seen Formula Juniors. Many of these important historic racing cars are driven by famous names from motor sport past and present. Famous drivers who have taken part include: Sir Stirling Moss, John Surtees, Sir Jack Brabham, Phil Hill, Derek Bell,David Coulthard, Damon Hill, Gerhard Berger, Martin Brundle, Bobby Rahal, Johnny Herbert, Wayne Gardner, Giacomo Agostini, Rowan Atkinson (as Mr. Bean), and the late Barry Sheene and Peter Brock.
The restored circuit is unchanged from its heyday and many visitors wear appropriate period clothing and no modern vehicles are allowed within the circuit perimeter throughout the weekend (except modern race fire and rescue vehicles). There are also theatrical sets that bring the past back to life including many historic aircraft.
Design and branding exploration to investigate the possibilities of a Shelby/Harley-Davidson relationship. Commissioned by Shelby Licensing, RDLA recommended that Shelby and Harley go beyond merchandising to combine the two American icons in a way that would truly open each brand to the audience of the other. The result was a transformation of Harley's existing product line via modifications based on Shelby's heritage, and our own deep knowledge of vintage motorcycle racing. Use of existing Shelby elements would allow Harley to modify the bikes in house, or via mod shops experienced at turning Mustangs into performance-tuned Shelby cars. The branding was then extended to exterior colors, materials, riding gear, apparel, helmets and gloves. All illustrations were created by RDLA's in-house artist, Hans Sures.
This project was the brainchild of RDLA's Michael Holmes. After examining a uniquely branded Hurley bicycle, RDLA approached Carroll Shelby Licensing to create a bike specific to the Shelby brand. Upon approval, RDLA reached out to Felt to see if they were interested in manufacturing. RDLA was commissioned for all aspects of the concept and design, and 500 units quickly sold out on a worldwide basis at a starting price of $999. Currently, these bikes are selling on the collector market for $5,000.
When RDLA set out to create the world's most accurate replica of the Shelby R-Model GT350, our team performed an exhaustive search of the car's design and style attributes. The result was the most comprehensive guide to the R-Model ever assembled, drawn from a range of historic and archive sources to inform our work to precise detail. To share this exclusive resource with Shelby American and private owners, RDLA created a limited edition style guide that also serves to celebrate this rare American racing classic.
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