Besides finding bargains, auctions offer opportunities to own some truly rare cars. That means everything from hypercars like the Koenigsegg Regera to a US-market Unimog. And it also includes special variants of already iconic classics. One such opportunity is coming up this March: the only remaining Shelby Cobra 427 Super Snake.
The Shelby Cobra 427 Super Snake is the rarest and most insane Cobra
Even today, the Shelby Cobra 427 is an impressively fast car. With a 485-hp 7.0-liter Ford V8 under its hood, the 2529-pound roadster goes 0-60 mph in 4.3 seconds, Car and Driver reports. It was so much faster and more powerful than the earlier Cobras that Carroll Shelby had to give it a longer chassis, wider wheels and tires, upgraded suspension, and four-wheel disc brakes. And all of that’s for the road-going cars; in-period, the Cobra 427 racers had 620 hp, The Drive reports.
But Shelby wanted to push the Cobra formula even further. Supposedly, because he kept being beaten on the way to the lake by a friend’s Ferrari, The Drive reports. Luckily, there was a street-converted Cobra 427 Competition car available at the shop. The result was the 1966 Shelby Cobra 427 Super Snake, the “‘Cobra to end all Cobras,'” Hagerty reports.
The 1966 Shelby Cobra 427 Super Snake still has a 7.0-liter (427 cubic inch) V8. Only it has a three-speed automatic instead of a manual. Oh, and it has two Paxton superchargers, too. So, instead of 485 hp, it makes a claimed 800 hp, Car and Driver reports. And it requires a total of three fuel pumps—one mechanical, two electric—to work.
Work, though, it did. Sort of. Testers clocked the Shelby Cobra 427 Super Snake’s 0-60 mph time at under three seconds, Car and Driver reports. It ran the ¼-mile in around 11 seconds, Hagerty reports, and was a genuine 200-mph car, Hemmings reports. And keep in mind, this was the late 1960s.
Carroll Shelby owned the last remaining Cobra 427 Super Snake—and now you can, too
Unfortunately, the Shelby Cobra 427 Super Snake was more than a bit too fast. While Carroll Shelby kept the original car, a second one was made and given to comedian Bill Cosby. Who, after driving it, was too terrified to keep it, Automobile reports. And the second car’s next owner, Tony Maxey, drove it off a cliff after the throttle jammed, Hagerty reports.
As a result, Carroll Shelby’s car is the only original Cobra 427 Super Snake left on the planet. And in March 2021, it’s going up for sale via Barrett-Jackson. Road & Track notes the roadster is in excellent condition, complete with its original headers, block, limited-slip differential, and oil cooler. It even has the original exhaust and racing brake calipers, Car and Driver reports.
Interestingly, this isn’t the first time Barrett-Jackson is auctioning off this car; it’s actually the third, Top Gear reports. The 1966 Shelby Cobra 427 Super Snake was first sold in 2007, and again in 2015. And it’s likely to be just as expensive the third time around.
But getting it won’t be cheap
This 1966 Shelby Cobra 427 Super Snake is one of the most expensive American cars ever sold at auction. Back in 2017, it sold for $5.115 million, R&T reports. Which is actually less than what it sold for in 2007: $5.7 million, Autoblog reports. But because of the recent hype surrounding Ford v. Ferrari, the Super Snake might go for even more, the Detroit Free Press reports.
And even if it doesn’t, it’s well above the typical asking price for a pristine original Shelby Cobra 427, Hagerty reports. It’s also much more than the auction price set by another Super Snake, the 1-of-1 Shelby GT500 Mustang Super Snake, R&T reports.
Still, for someone, the sting of the superchargers might be worth the sting in their wallet.
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