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Lot 475: AC Cobra Replica MkIII

Collectors' Motorcars and Automobilia, Bonhams (3 June 2012)

It has often been said that imitation is the greatest form of flatteryand by that measure the AC Cobra must be one of the greatest cars ever produced. Introduced in 1962 and entering production in 1963, the Cobra was the brilliant marriage by Texas chicken farmer-cum-racecar driver-cum sportscar builder Carroll Shelby of a proven British chassis with a powerful American V8. Ford, looking to associate itself with a Corvette killer, signed on to provide engines. The Cobra initially came with the 260ci V8, but would later be offered with the 289ci V8 and finally the big-block 427ci V8. With any powerplant, the Cobra proved itself to be a force to be reckoned with on the racetrack, taking victories in the US and abroad. While genuine Cobra production ended in 1967, the thirst for the car never faded and a cottage industry of manufactures popped onto the scene to fulfill demand. Following much the same trajectory as the Lotus Seven, many of the offerings were sold in kit form in varying degrees of quality. One of the companies that emerged as a market leader in high quality kits was Factory Five. Producing a kit that was a dead ringer for an original Cobra and manufactured to a high standard, the hobby flocked toward the Factory Five kits, making them the best selling Cobra replica out there. This Factory Five MkIII was professionally built and only recently completed with fewer than 250 miles on the ticker. Fitted with a Ford 302ci V8 breathing through a Holly four-barrel carburetor, fired by Mallory electronic ignition, and spitting exhaust out of a stainless steel exhaust system, there should be no question about the tractability or swiftness of this snake. Power is funneled through a Tremic T-5 tranny to a FoMoCo 8.8" limited-slip differential with a 3.73 final drive ratio. At the corners are Bilstein coil overs in the front and Koni adjustable suspension at the rear, holding down the four Halibrand knock-off wheels containing front disc/rear drum brakes. Underneath the skin is a powder coated frame and rack-and-pinion steering. Simpson 4-point racing seat belts will do their best to keep the spirited motorist in place while putting the beast through its paces in the twisties. At a tenth the cost of a genuine Cobra, this roadster offers all of the driving thrill of the real thing without the cost, worry, or stress.

Lot Details
Auction Collectors' Motorcars and Automobilia
Bonhams, Greenwich, Connecticut
TypeCar
Lot Number475
Estimate$30000-$40000
Outcome SOLD
Hammer Price$24300
Hammer Price (inc premium)$28431
Year1964
Condition rating
Registration number
Mileage-
Chassis numberFSR1005836RD
Engine number
Engine capacity (cc)
Engine - cylinders
Number of doors2