Cobra bites into market
Don’t expect to get the FPV heroes cheaply, writes NEIL McDONALD
FORD Performance Vehicles’ V8 Cobras have turned into an instant classic. Buyers are paying $30,000 above the recommended retail price for the used versions of the cars, which had a recommended retail price of $65,110 for the GT sedan and $61,200 for the ute.
One website has two Cobra sedans for sale, one with 10,000km on the clock listed for $80,000 and the other with just 500km for $95,000.
Another buyer has a $109,000 asking price on a Cobra that has done just 29km. Another has $84,990 for an example that has travelled 1500km. Yet another buyer has his XC Cobra listed with his BF Mk II Cobra for ‘‘best offer over $200,000’’. It is the same story with the Cobra Pursuit utes, with prices varying from $74,000 to $87,000.
FPV general manager Rod Barrett says he could have built more Cobras if Ford had let him.
‘‘We were restricted. I would have liked to have built more. In 40 years, though, those 500 cars will still be classics,’’ he says.
Last year FPV built 400 sedans and 100 utes with a Cobra badge.
All 500 cars were snapped up by dealers, but a handful remain, with some FPV dealers holding back on stock to maintain interest.
Cashed-up buyers are clearly keen to spend what it takes to secure a piece of Ford history, Barrett says.
And he says FPV had to field some negativity for recreating a commemorative Cobra from the 1970s.
‘‘We copped a bit of criticism for recreating the Cobra, but it’s an icon worth remembering.’’
The latest Cobra sedan and ute is powered by a Boss 302 engine developing 302kW/ 540Nm, and is equipped with FPV stainlesssteel fabricated exhaust manifolds and a highflow dual-exhaust system.
For motoring buffs, 302 was the capacity in cubic inches of Ford’s small-block V8 engine and is also exactly double the 151kW output of the 1978 Cobra’s 4.9-litre V8 engine.
The GT Cobra has a limited slip differential and is available as a close-ratio six-speed manual transmission with a high torque clutch or the ZF six-speed automatic transmission.
The latest Cobra came about to mark last year’s 30th anniversary of Ford’s one-two win with drivers Allan Moffat and Colin Bond at the famed Bathurst endurance race.
To commemorate that win, Ford Australia released 400 Falcon XC Cobra coupes in July 1978. Those cars are now highly collectable, with one 220,000km example recently priced at $71,500.
Cashed up and convicted: enthusiasts are paying way above market prices to get a Cobra sedan (above) or ute into their garage.