1966 Shelby Cobra $42,995
What could be cooler than the world's best-looking 2-seat roadster, filled with a fuel injected 5.0-liter V8, a capable suspension, and paint that makes people stop and stare? If you're a real car guy, you've probably already contemplated building your own Cobra replica, but the smart money's on buying someone else's finished car like this amazing Factory Five roadster.
Cobras always look best with stripes and with the explosion of awesome replicas running around, this one stands out in a big way. Pepper Gray never looked so good, with a hint of metallic and professional-grade finishing, the body fits together extremely well (the Factory Five kits are famous for their quality fiberglass work). It isn't perfect, but it's very close, and the paint lays down over some expertly massaged panels and you can't deny the awesomeness of that shape. The body is devoid of any stripes, giving this Factory Five snake a bit of an updated look without changing the recipe too dramatically. This is likely how most of them looked back when they were still just regular cars, and it gets pretty easy to imagine the fun you could be having with this in your garage. Proper jacking stubs, blacked-out side pipes, and correct Lucas-style taillights add interest to a traditional look, and those dual chrome roll hoops are probably the best-looking safety device ever invented. This roadster looks fast even when it's standing still.
The interior sticks to the original recipe, too, which means no modern buckets, no fat steering wheel and plenty of black upholstery. There's an original-style wooden steering wheel which reminds you of the Cobra's English origins and they went the extra mile by using Auto Meter gauges that replicate the original Smiths pieces, right down to their staggered orientation. A toggle panel under the dash is a unique touch to the interior of this Cobra, something you rarely see in these usually spartan interiors. You can forget a radio or heater (this is a Cobra, not your mom's car) and they even managed to make the shifter look like the original Cobra piece, which was a reverse-mounted Mustang unit. Cobras aren't famous for storage space, but this one has an unfinished aluminum trunk that shows off just how well-built these Factory Five replicas really are. And don't worry, there is no top (who cares?).
The beauty of the Factory Five kit is that all the Mustang 5.0 components bolt right on, although this one remains almost entirely stock. There's no sense in trying to make it look authentic, the big aluminum intake manifold has been ported and polished for smoother air flow, and looks familiar enough sitting on top of the 5.0, and thanks to properly tuned fuel injection, it runs like a factory-built Mustang. It's been built well, with Jegs aluminum heads, oversized valves, rocker arms, and beehive springs. Take it easy on the throttle and it's docile and friendly. But if you nail it, be prepared for things to get crazy in a big hurry even in stock spec. The pipes wail, the car lunges forward, and you've got to remember to shift before you run out of revs in about 1.2 seconds. BBK long-tube headers channel into flat black side pipes look (and sound) awesome while the cooling system is a massive aluminum radiator with electric fans. The frame is a Factory Five tubular steel space frame, the suspension is coilovers all around, and a Ford 8.8-inch lock limited slip differential is in back so it's equipped for the power. The Tremec T5 5-speed gearbox spins a set of reasonable 3.55 gears, because you just don't need tall cogs with this much torque available. 5-spoke chrome wheels are the perfect finishing touch, carrying big 245/45/17 (front) and 275/40/17 performance radials.
We've said it before and it applies here: it's always faster and cheaper to buy a finished Cobra, and with the features on this one, that should be an easy decision because this one is exactly how you'd build it yourself. Call today!