Shelby Cobras are well known for their endeavors in road racing, but a select few were modified with a Shelby-developed drag racing package. We’ve found one of these rare drag racers — a 1963 Shelby Cobra DragonSnake — heading up for auction early next year and bring it to you as our Potential Purchase of the Week.
Although the drag racing package was developed by Shelby itself and offered as an option, very few buyers actually checked the box for the so-called DragonSnake Cobra. The drag racing package provided some serious modifications to ensure optimum traction off the line. Both the front and rear shocks were replaced with Cure-Ride shocks specially designed for drag racing and the front and rear springs were lengthened to provide better control and traction under hard acceleration.
These cars were powered by Ford’s 289-cubic-inch V-8 with four different available power outputs. This car here uses the third most powerful option package with eight single-barrel Weber carburetors helping it put out 325 horsepower. That power was transmitted to the ground through a four-speed manual transmission. In total, only eight of these cars were equipped with these modifications.
This combination however, proved to be nearly unbeatable as the car dominated the NHRA A, AA, B, and C drag racing classes in 1964. In 1965 it set all new records, winning the NHRA Spring Nationals, Winter Nationals, and U.S. Indy Nationals. This Cobra continued to dominate, winning no less than eight NHRA World Championships, making it the winningest competition Cobra in the car’s history. It was so successful in fact, that Shelby withdrew its factory supported drag teams.
The Shelby Cobra DragonSnake offered here has been inspected and authenticated by the Antique Automobile Club of America as an original and comes with a fully documented history.
Why would I want one?
A whole number of reasons including its rarity, history, and certification. It’s truly a piece of automotive history that has been accurately restored to better condition than when it left the factory.
Head over to Mecum Auctions’ Web site to see the monster Cobra for yourself.
Source: Mecum Auctions