Custom Shelby Cobra Packs Massive 444 CI Stroker Engine

By - 1965 Shelby Cobra Replica

One-off tribute to the classic Shelby Cobra features a massive engine, side pipes, and carbon fiber accents.

There are some pairings that just sound right. For instance, spaghetti and meatballs. There’s also rest and relaxation. A small car and big power is one of our favorites; this 1965 “Backdraft” Shelby Cobra GT4Four4 one-off from Vintage Motorsports (VMS) is a great example of the combo.

As a tribute to the Cobra, it sports many of the visual cues of the yesteryear car that inspired it. The compact curvaceous, muscular shape is there, albeit topped with a removable roof. Ditto for the knock-off-style wheels, side pipes, and manual transmission. Even the open-ring interior upholstery is a nod to a bygone era.

The Backdraft Cobra also has plenty of modern design and performance touches. Those Halibrand-style wheels are wrapped in Nitto rubber. Inside, the custom gauges sit inside of a carbon fiber dashboard. The Hurst shifter is topped by a knob made out of even more of the lightweight material. 1965 Shelby Cobra Replica

As well as it combines the past and present, the Backdraft Cobra does an even better job of combining its small outer dimensions with huge power under its hood. Vintage Motorsports shoehorned an absolutely monstrous, naturally aspirated 444-cubic-inch (7.3-liter) stroker motor with Cross Ram fuel injection into the engine bay; output is 600 horsepower. That giant is connected to headers, a Tremec six-speed manual gearbox, and a limited-slip rear end with 3.73 gears. A VMS Stage 2 suspension helps the Backdraft Cobra stick to the road; Wilwood brakes help keep it in one piece.

Look for this crazy-powerful creation to cross the auction block in Monterey later this week as part of Monterey Car Week. Mecum Auctions expects a bid between $115,000 and $125,000 will take this black and white beast home.

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Derek Shiekhi contributes to a variety of Internet Brands’ Auto sites, including J-K Forum , Jaguar Forums, and 5 Series. He's also a member of the Texas Auto Writers Association.

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