Cars & Racing | 21 September 2015Shelby Cobra: The Revolution Begins Share article facebook twitter google pinterest The Shelby Cobra is an iconic car. Created by Carroll Shelby, a chicken farmer turned race car driver, this car is truly made for automobile lovers. Colin Comer‘s book, Shelby Cobra: The Snake that Conquered the World, offers a detailed look into the ultra high-quality sports cars manufactured by the confident and determined Shelby. The following images and commentary is excerpted from the start of the chapter in Shelby Cobra entitled, “The Revolution Begins.” Revolution Begins: Shelby launches Full-Scale attack, code name “Cobra” Even Carroll Shelby couldn’t have known what he was starting when that first Ford 221-cubic-inch engine was dropped into an AC Ace. after all, he’d taken Ford’s new, unproven, small V-8 made for the company’s economy car, flown it halfway across the world to Thames-ditton England, and dropped it into an AC Ace sports car, along-in-tooth 10-year-old design teetering on the brink of extinction.hell, neither the engine nor the transplant recipient were Shelby’s first choice. This was a case of Shelby wanting to build his own sports car and taking cookies when cookies were passed. little did any of the players know what they were doing was literally going to change the sports car world forever. Actually, change might not be the right word. Revolutionize is more accurate. The September 1962 issue of Road & Track magazine featured a full road test of Shelby’s new Cobra. It just happened to be CSX2000,by this time wearing a blinding coat of pearlescent yellow paint. An original factory Dragonsnake Cobra, CSX2357 was the second one completed. It is shown here “dumping the laundry” as they say in drag racing. By June 1963, Road & Track’s cover story was that of the new Cobras infiltrating the ranks of the previously dominant Corvettes. This appears to be Riverside 1963, with CSX2008 and CSX2002 running up front. Car Life magazine got in on the Cobra vs. Corvette battle in its August 1964 issue, featuring a street Cobra and a new Corvette Sting Ray road test shootout. Shelby’s advertising was always clever, and tongue in cheek, pointing out, for example, the difference between a street Cobra and a race Cobra was merely how hard you depressed your right foot. By 1964 Shelby’s advertising was picking things up a notch, and the car was now simply the “Cobra.” This very early 1963 showroom sales brochure shows that the car had not yet become the Shelby Cobra, and it was still referred to as the “Shelby AC Cobra.” Shelby Cobra: The Snake that Conquered the World Author: Colin Comer Foreword by: Carroll Shelby In 2011, Shelby enthusiast Colin Comer wrote Shelby Cobra 50 Years; the book met with rave reviews, including Esquire magazine naming it “the greatest car book of all time.” Shortly after its publication, Carroll Shelby and Phil Remington–the two most important men behind the Shelby Cobra–passed away. In the wake of this loss comes this special collector’s edition of Shelby Cobra 50 Years, Shelby Cobra: The Snake That Conquered the World. The book recalls the early 1960s when Carroll Shelby, a Texas chicken farmer turned champion race driver, had the audacity to think he could start his own car manufacturing company. To further emphasize the gargantuan proportions of his confidence, Shelby decided his company would manufacture nothing but ultra-high-performance sports cars, beginning with the landmark Cobra, introduced in 1962. To the amazement of everyone, except Ol’ Shel’ himself, Shelby Automobiles succeeded beyond anyone’s wildest expectations, building cars that would provide benchmarks for performance that stand to this day and winning world championships in the process. Shelby Cobra: The Snake That Conquered the World is a complete history of Shelby’s Cobra sports cars and firsthand accounts from the people who made the car the legend it is today. It begins with the events that led up to Shelby’s decision to build a high-performance sports car, continues with the story of the production Cobra street cars and racecars, and wraps up with Shelby’s continuation cars and an all new chapter with tributes to Carroll Shelby from Chuck Cantwell, John Morton, Henry Ford III, Kati Remington-Blackledge, and others, as well as new and updated material. This special collector’s edition includes stunning poster-sized gatefolds featuring artwork by Hector Cadamartori and is an officially licensed Carroll Shelby product. Buy from an Online Retailer US: UK: Share article facebook twitter google pinterest If you have any comments on this article please contact us or get in touch via social media.