This Shelby Cobra 289 Is a "Very Rare Ford Motor Company Demonstrator"

22 April 2020 - autoevolution

This Shelby Cobra 289 Is a "Very Rare Ford Motor Company Demonstrator"

There’s little between the Shelby Cobra 289 and Mazda MX-5 Miata SkyActiv-G 2.0 in terms of curb weight, but there’s also a significant difference in terms of suck-squeeze-bang-blow.

271 horsepower from 4.7 liters of displacement doesn't sound like a lot, but in the Cobra, it's plenty enough and scary as well beyond the 2,500-rpm sweet spot.

Moving up to the 427 is madness, more so if we're talking about the Super Snake. CSX 3303 scared Bill Cosby so much that the comedian's seventh stand-up comedy album – 200 MPH – attests how much of a monster the Shelby Cobra to rule all Cobras is. 3303 was the end of the subsequent owner - Tony Maxey - who drove it off a cliff.

Turning our attention back to the 289 short-block V8, CSX 2195 is one of the most original examples of the breed thanks to caring owners and an extensive history record. One of the extremely few Cobras ordered by Ford for demonstration and exhibition purposes, the car in the photo gallery was special-ordered with extruded rear wings that accepted wider tires, the Class 1 accessories package that includes the chrome rocker covers, a luggage rack, as well as WSW rubber boots and a black interior.

And boy, what an interior! The shorty shifter, wood-rimmed steering wheel, and a few gauges make this lightweight roadster look austere as opposed to modern sports cars such as the Mazda MX-5, but then again, what did you expect from a '60s design?

Restored over the course of 12 years - from 2006 to 2018 - CSX 2195 is the main attraction of the Indy 2020 auction. Finished in the original color of Guardsman Blue, this fellow here is "one of only 580 built between 1963 and 1965" according to Mecum Auctions. RM Sotheby's tried to auction off the old-school brawler last year in Arizona, but with a highest bid of $675,000, the reserve wasn't met.

Mecum doesn't give an estimate for the blue-painted roadster at Indy 2020, but it's more than obvious that we'll be dealing with $750,000 for the lower bid and probably $1 million for the highest bid. In addition to the car, the seller also offers "an event program signed by the late Carroll Shelby who added Chassis CSX 2195 to his signature."