Even before he started racing professionally and won the 24 Hours of Le Mans, Carroll Shelby had a dream of building sports cars under his own name. In 1961, he got the news that AC Cars from England would stop production of their AC Ace model since the Bristol six-cylinder engines weren’t available anymore. True entrepreneur at heart, Shelby realized that the light and nimble British roadster could be a perfect match for a powerful American V8 engine and that this could be the chance of becoming a constructor, and not just a retired racing car driver. He contacted AC Cars and they sent him an engine-less body to his shop in California. With some help from Ford Motor Company and a small team of mechanics, the first Shelby Cobra was introduced in 1962. It was powered by Ford’s 260ci V8 engine, and later with a venerable 289ci V8, and it pretty soon took the sports car world by a storm. The combination of lightweight body, small dimensions and brute US power proved to be revolutionary and the car did extremely well in competition all around the world.
With plenty of reproduction companies each touting their attributes for their “kit” cars there is lots of non-originals floating around with various configurations, and packages. What there are very few of are original documented non kit cars which we refer to as actual originals. For consignment is a documented original Shelby Cobra…and the room goes silent!
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