A 1967 Shelby Cobra 427: The Legendary Car with Monstrous Power

The 1967 Shelby Cobra 427 is an iconic car that holds a special place in automotive history. Known for its unparalleled power and timeless design, this legendary vehicle has captivated car enthusiasts for decades. In this article, we will delve into the fascinating world of the Shelby Cobra 427, exploring its history, specifications, and the exhilarating experience of driving this beast on wheels.

The Thrill of Driving the Shelby Cobra 427

“The 427 is just monstrous to drive,” says Jim Taylor, a proud owner of this remarkable machine. Among the cars in his collection, the Cobra holds a special status, reserved for those with exceptional driving skills. While Jim is open to letting his friends experience his other cars, the Cobra is a different story. Its power can make it “squirrely” and challenging to handle without the necessary driving or racing experience.

Jim acquired his 1967 Shelby Cobra 427 at an RM Auction in Boca Raton, FL, in 2005. With only 5,504 miles on the odometer, this Cobra was in pristine condition, sporting its original components with the exception of a fresh paint job. As the third owner, Jim recognizes the rarity and significance of his prized possession.

The First AC Cobra, Mark I

The journey of the Shelby Cobra began in 1962 when the very first AC Cobra, known as CSX 2000, was shipped to the Shelby shop in Los Angeles. This prototype started as a British AC Ace sports car, which Carroll Shelby outfitted with a Ford 260 ci V-8 engine. The lightweight and incredibly fast CSX 2000 showcased its potential on both the road and the track.

The initial production of the Cobra Mark I saw the first 75 cars equipped with the 260 ci Ford V-8 engines. The subsequent 51 cars featured a more potent 289 ci engine. Carroll Shelby succinctly summarized his philosophy with the Cobra, stating, “Little car, big engine, it’s as simple as that.” This formula set the stage for the Cobra’s unrivaled performance.

Mark II: Enhancing Performance and Handling

In November 1964, the Shelby Cobra Mark II made its debut with a newly designed front end, specifically engineered to accommodate rack-and-pinion steering. A total of 528 Mark II Cobras were produced and shipped to the United States. These cars arrived at their destination fully painted and trimmed, with Shelby responsible for the final installation of engines and transmissions.

Mark III: Unleashing the Power of the Big-Block V-8

In collaboration with Ford in Detroit, a new Cobra model was designed to house a powerful big-block V-8 engine. The Cobra Mark III boasted larger chassis tubes, coil spring suspension on all corners, an enlarged radiator opening, and wider fenders to accommodate the mighty big-block engine. Production of the Mark III spanned from 1965 to 1967.

Two variants of the Mark III were available: the production model and the competition model. Jim Taylor’s Cobra belongs to the production model, boasting 355 bhp and a top speed of 164 mph. On the other hand, the competition model delivered a staggering 485 bhp and could reach speeds of up to 185 mph. The production models were equipped with either a 427 ci or a 428 ci engine, with the 3100 and 3300 series featuring the 427 ci engine and the 3200 series housing the 428 ci engine.


The 1967 Shelby Cobra 427 represents the epitome of automotive excellence. Its rarity, raw power, and iconic design make it a true legend on the road. From the initial AC Cobra to the Mark III iterations, each model holds a special place in automotive history. Owning and driving a Cobra is a testament to the passion and appreciation for remarkable engineering and automotive artistry.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1: How many Shelby Cobra 427 cars were produced in 1967?

A1: The exact number of Shelby Cobra 427 cars produced in 1967 is not readily available. However, their limited production and rarity contribute to their desirability among collectors and enthusiasts.

Q2: What makes the Cobra 427 so special?

A2: The Cobra 427 stands out due to its powerful big-block V-8 engine, aggressive design, and remarkable performance capabilities. Its exceptional rarity and historical significance add to its allure.

Q3: Can you drive a Shelby Cobra 427 on the street?

A3: Yes, the Shelby Cobra 427 was intended for street use. However, its extraordinary power and performance require a skilled driver to handle the car safely.

Q4: What is the top speed of a Shelby Cobra 427?

A4: The top speed of a Shelby Cobra 427 varies depending on the model and engine specifications. The production model of the Mark III Cobra with a 427 ci engine had a top speed of 164 mph.

Q5: Are there any replicas or continuation cars of the Shelby Cobra 427 available today?

A5: Yes, there are replica and continuation cars available today that closely resemble the original Shelby Cobra 427. These cars are often built by authorized manufacturers and provide enthusiasts with the opportunity to own a piece of automotive history.


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