1965 AC Cobra 289


Details and Story:

Chassis, number CSX 2421 was, according to the SAAC World Registry, shipped to Los Angeles aboard the SS Dintledyk, and it was invoiced on November 6, 1964, to Jerry Watson Ford, of Fort Wayne, Indiana. That invoice was then voided, and the car returned to Los Angeles, for sale by Carroll Shelby’s own dealership, Hi-Performance Motors, from which it soon sold.

From 1965 to 1973 not much is known about this car’s whereabouts but the Cobra made its way to Pennsylvania, into the hands of its first documented owners, Bill and Kathy Armstrong. The Armstrongs had moved up to Pennsylvania after finishing their stint at Fort Bragg here in North Carolina. They enjoyed showing their Cobra in various Eastern and Midwestern events, even winning an award at the New Hope Auto Show in 1977 (INSERT picture) and taking the Best Cobra award at the first annual SAAC meet in Brown County, Indiana, in 1978.

In 1978 Mr. Armstrong was once again called upon to serve his country abroad for several years. His wife Kathy accompanied him, and they put their cars into storage, where they apparently intended to retrieve them upon their return in the 1980s. For reasons unknown at the time (must have been kids!), that never happened. The Cobra just sat for many years until about 1990.

Enter Gary “Bubba” Carter into the story. Bubba answered a newspaper ad for the car, called  Eddie O’Brian, inspected it, and bought it.

After purchasing the car Bubba shipped it Eddie in Colorado for a thorough inspection and a light refreshing. They went further. The car was stripped to the bare metal revealing only a slight bump on the lower front nose. The car, with that paint and interior that was renewed for Bubba in the 1990s, was said to have survived in “remarkably fine condition” in RM’s Amelia Island catalog in 2014. An inspection of the body and chassis reveals no evidence of the car having ever been damaged or undergone significant repairs.

To ensure that the body and chassis remained in such fine condition, the car was send to Colour restorations to be refreshed under the watchful eye of Glenn Watts. Glenn worked under renowned Cobra restorer Bill Murray for more than 20 years and is simply one of the best. The current owner reports that much of the trim and hardware present on the car is original, and each piece still bears the correct 2421 number. In addition, this Shelby is still equipped with its original, charmingly yellowed Stewart-Warner gauges, with the odometer reading 41,000 miles. When the car was restored, a new top and side curtain assembly was made but its original top and side curtains also remain with the car.

For decades, since the beginning of the Cobra’s status as a true “collectible,” CSX 2421 has been sought by many and acquired by so few.  Today, it is offered as one of the very few remaining Cobras, expertly refinished with the great attention to retain its original numbered pieces. Its truly the best offered, both in condition and provenance, and it is ready to live the next chapter of its life for an owner who may drive it, show it, and enjoy it as Carroll Shelby intend.