Since the Cobra has no drivetrain,...
Since the Cobra has no drivetrain, my brother Tom and I slipped in a four-cylinder 7.5 rear to make it mobile.
A low-mileage, Southern car...
A low-mileage, Southern car is a wonderful thing. Starting with such a clean ride will no doubt make bolting things up much easier, and it should take less time since I won't have to clean and detail everything.
Shoot me now, but the interior...
Shoot me now, but the interior honestly still smells new. I may never crack open the windows. The new-car scent lasted about 25,000 miles on my last new car, so I should probably stop driving it at around 20,000 to be safe. Screw that!
Yes, that is 1,331 miles....
Yes, that is 1,331 miles. The previous owner had installed the white-faced gauges, which oddly enough caused me to make an error in an SVT story I did a few years back ("The Fast and the Furious," Dec. '03).
Over the years, my wife's own '90 Mustang GT has been the subject of numerous modifications on these pages, and her knowledge of the Cobra's inherent value and rarity made it an easy decision for us. We agreed to do whatever we had to do to get the five large as it was too good a deal to pass up.
George purchased this '93 Cobra from its original owner back in January 1996. The car had logged a mere 776 miles, and George pulled it out of its bubble (yes, he stored it in an inflatable bubble) to drive it every now and then, adding just 600-or-so more miles before it broke a valvespring.
The motor was torn down and all of the valvespring pieces were found, but George had big plans for the car and began to disassemble it. Visions of a supercharged 408ci Windsor motor, a full race suspension, and bigger brakes would really put the bite into this snake.
Unfortunately, the teardown proceeded faster than the funding for the project could accrue, and the Cobra sat dormant in its bubble, stripped of its drivetrain and suspension.
The real kick in the pants is that George sold me the original 17-inch wheels for it, and while I told myself I should hang on to them because they were such a great deal and I liked them so much, they were eventually sold on one of the many LX Mustangs that passed through my stable. Try finding a set now at a reasonable price.
Thanks to the low-mileage and George's religious bubble upkeep, the Cobra looks brand-new and still smells new inside. The car's only modifications, aside from being stripped of its drivetrain, were white-faced gauges and some lengthening of the engine wiring harnesses to hide them in the fenderwells.
On the afternoon George called, I went home and put one of my other project cars up for sale to help offset the cost. It generated a bit of interest and someone offered to trade me some South African coins for it, but remarkably the next day a serious buyer called and showed up with truck, trailer, and a pocket full of cash.
I lost about $900 on it, but there was no love lost between the ailing project and myself, not to mention the purchase price accounted for nearly half the Cobra's cost and I was in need of a quick turnaround.
I borrowed the rest of the money and made the deal with a reluctant owner signing over the title to his pride and joy. Don't worry about him, though. George and his fiancee, Brandi, own an '04 Mystichrome Cobra convertible and he couldn't have given his '93 a better foster home.