Category Archives: AC

AC

From Cobra 427 AC to New

In 2014, Shelby announced to come out with a limited edition 50th anniversary Cobra 427 AC. There are very rare masterpieces from the convertible cars section that you would be proud to own as your collectible. This one certainly makes to the list of the convertible lovers. The majority of the petrol heads are well aware of the magical creation of Carroll Shelby’s big block Cobra that was launched in the year 1965. What’s more exciting was that the announcement that there will be 50 such iconic pieces.Cobra 427 AC

The Cobra 427-AC Then:

Many years ago, the British grand touring car manufacturers were able to build one of their best cars with an amazing mileage. It was known to accelerate from 0-100 mph. Furthermore, it braked completely in less than 25 seconds. People found it to be very impressive in the beginning. However, soon with the automotive development and major transformations in the velocity, the convertibles witnessed amazing shift.

It is indeed unbelievable that this convertible could brake at 14.5-seconds and could easily accelerate up to 100 miles per hour. In the meantime, Shelby made sure to keep up with the standards that the convertible had already set until he comes up with something plusher than Cobra. That meant beating some of the best cars that had high water mark when it came to performance.

For a long time, the 427 Cobra was known to accelerate and decelerate at godly rates. What was more magical was that this civilized car had a new and all-independent suspension system. In the post-war years, the leaf springs and lower wishbones were coupled with the flexible frame. This supported the suspension system even better.

The Cobra 427 AC Now:

Each of the 50 pieces of this roadster that were set out to sell was painted in Guardsmen Blue and Wimbledon White Stripes. They come equipped with a premium black leather for the interiors along with some other highlights. It made its debut in Scottsdale, Arizona at its major Barret-Jackson Auction in January 2015.

One thing is for sure the way the world looked at convertibles drastically changed with the big block Shelby’s Cobra. The people appreciated small block cars, however, Cobra was FE-powered and it simply took the convertibles to a new level. It was not just powerful in its performance but highly sophisticated in its look. Shelby’s dream to carve the first hypercar of the world actualized with Cobra.

The recent Cobras are a modern take on the big block Cobras. With a new coil spring independent suspension, it is known to give better comfort and a smooth drive. It comes with a larger passenger compartment for ergonomically leisurely seating. The upgraded brakes, fatter tires, and wider tracks simply ensured that there is nothing amiss in the new Cobra from the older Cobra

If you look at both the versions, you will find each in its own a purest expression. Shelby’s vision certainly transformed the regular convertible into a high-performance car. If you are planning to invest in this roadster, then do not lose a moment to think and get your limited edition Cobra 427 AC.

Cobra 260/289 AC: Into the History

DEVELOPMENT:

When you compare the Cobra 260/289-AC with the Ace or the Ace Bristol roadsters, it differed slightly in three areas. First is the basic chassis; second is the suspension; and third is its body design. Back then the supplies of the Bristol engines declined and Shelby approached AC to supply the engineless Aces.

Cobra 260:289 AC

Soon, the Ace was developed and the chassis was stiffened up. The overall pattern was similar to the Acecas model. It had a limited slip installed similar to the Salisbury final drive. Shelby did add some final and smaller grilled and broader wheel arches to support the wider tires. But he did not disturb the styling and let it be the same as Ace.

All the Shelby Cobras came with 4 wheel disc brakes. It was decided to have inboard rear brakes. But during production they opted for the outboard units. The Cobra 260/289-AC had a steering box was canted for the Ford engine. However, the suspension and steering geometry stayed the same with few changes here and there.

INSIDE OUT:

Shelby-Cobra-289-interior

The cars that arrived at the Shelby’s came in with the engines and gearboxes from California. It was the assembly that happened in the UK. This convertible was known for being lightweight engine and compact thinwall V-8. It was initially in the Ford’s Fairlane which was adopted in this one. Since the size of the original engine was 260 cubic inches, they could be fitted in the first 75 Cobras. There were additions of 4-speed Borg-Warner along with the engine.

The rest of the 51 cars had 289 cubic inch engine and fulfilled the FIA standards. It was pretty amazing that this model campaigned all through the Europe between 1964 and 1966. Interestingly, this model was successful in handling the expectations and racked up several victories and appreciations all over the continent.

THE NEW GENERATION:

Mark II, Shelby Cobras

Next to hit the roads were the Mark II, Shelby Cobras. They were built around 1963 and retained their original transverse spring Ace Chassis. This model had 289 engine but it featured the rack-and-pinion steering. This was a definite improvement that was appreciated by both the users and the critics. Precisely 528 cars were built and the old Ace chassis discontinued its production.

Initially it was decided that the Cobra was to be sold only for the U.S. however, it did not survive long. Around 1963 they had their first batch of right-hand-drive cars ready. But they only launched it towards the end 1964 in the British markets. Later they hit all over Europe and witnessed some success.

It was the 1965 that saw an end of Ace-chassis Cobra. Soon the company focused on producing the ferocious Cobra 427. It had an altogether new chassis and was dubbed as “Mark III.” But this small-block Cobra had only 27 like it and had to be terminated around 1968! Carroll Shelby produced his iconic 427 Cobra in the year 1967 and sold it in 1968.

AC COBRA MK IV: The stunning convertible with style and power

Cobra MKIV AC is considered to be one of the best sports cars and was later modified into a convertible. It had a muscular built that made it a legendary among the convertible cars. This was among those sports cars which was successful in winning hearts of many sports enthusiasts. Between 1962 and1967 there were around 1000 different types of Cobras built.

Who did it?

Carroll-Shelby-Cobras

Carroll Shelby was called a legend when he adopted the Ford motor to accommodate the small AC chassis. Somewhere around 60s, Cobra was able to perform with its massive American horsepower. Interestingly, the model had this charming and alluring European body. Various sports car critics and aficionados deemed it as the ‘ultimate’ car and till date it remains to be so.

Cobra MKIV-AC

Sadly in the 70’s, Cobra MKIV-AC had stopped offering servicing facilities. It was because their major mechanic had quit. Soon Brian Angliss stepped into his shoes and filled in the tall order. He formed a larger customer base and developed a better reputation for this model. Angliss contributed greatly in building the Ace and Cobra bodies.

The original MKIV-AC is lightweight and one of the 12 genuinely hand built cars. The aluminium body had started leaving a lasting impact on all the people who eagerly awaited the entries of the new cars in the convertibles family from sporting background.

Are there any restored Cobra MKIV-AC?

AC COBRA MK IV 5.0L

Indeed there are and several convertibles are up for grabs. One such restored MKIV is 1993 AC. It has ‘Nut and Bolt’ body with rolling chassis. The project of restoration for this model was taken up by AC specialists from UK. Every detail from the period color to riveted bonnet and flat dashboard was given importance during the restoration.

Another restored Cobra was the 1987 AC and it was sold at £61,600. It had exceedingly menacing looks, chrome bumpers, tobacco interiors, and extremely well built and quality engine. This was the model that spoke power with comfort. One did not see much of these models in Europe. Known for its ease and reliability, you would be looking out for this one .

Which one should you buy?

AC COBRA MK IV 5.0L ENGINE

You probably know the fact that classic cars are tough to get hold of and pretty expensive. It totally depends on the amount of money you are willing to spend. Vast majority of 1003 Cobras were built and sold in America alone.

Prices tend to fluctuate and keep rising due to the rarity and overall demand in the market. The suppliers and car critics predict that it would be rarest of the rare opportunity when you would find the Cobra MKIV-AC sold at a cheaper price.

AC Cobra mkiv interior

As a buyer, you should be keen on buying only the original masterpiece. You might come across hoax and fraudsters. It would be genuinely tough to trick any car lover, but there are some geniuses who are extremely good in replicating. Be alert and see that even if you buy kit based or replica Cobra, you pay its due value and not that of the classic beauty. Check for the performance and specs, model history, and price before you jump into the offer.

Ace Bristol AC: Where elegance meets performance!

Based on the racing car, the Ace-Bristol-AC was first designed by John Tojeiro. It was introduced in the London Motor show around 1953. Till date this car stays to be the signature product in the AC marquee models. What made the public interested was its super cool sleek bodywork. Just imagine the contemporary Ferrari Barchetta and compare it with this convertible cars model. Besides its independent suspension four-wheel system garnered ample praise from the magazine testers.

ac-ace-bristol-convertible-cars-back

Timeline of the Ace Bristol Convertible:

1956:

So, around this time the Ace-Bristol-AC upgraded its standards with its state-of-the-art power unit. In the beginning the unit used to produce 103 horsepower. The manufacturers pushed the limits to 125 horsepower. When one takes a close look at its D2 specification, he could easily trace the BMW’s pre-war 328 design origins to this model. This model actually was popular till 1960’s because it got the speed of a racing car.

1957:

Bristol-powered Aces made amazing performances in the competition. In fact this model won 3 successive championships around 1957 to 1959. It even won 2 D-Production championships in the following years 1960 and 1961. There were several other competitions like Le Mans Championship that this model left a lasting impression on the people.

ac-ace-bristol-convertible-interior

1960:

This model had notable racing provenance. The most like part of this convertible was its rare curved windscreen. There were front disc brakes for perfect grip and safety. When it came to general audience they were more than joyous to experience the engine that was once only exclusive to the sporting cars but now was in the regular convertible.

From 1956 there were around 220 cars manufactured with the definitive Bristol engine of 120 horsepower. As per the nature of the use and demand around 1957, gave serious competition to Jaguar XK 120, Porsche 356 Speedster, Austin Healey etc.

It was in the 1961, AC charged the engine once again and remodeled it 2553cc Zepher unit. There were only 46 models that were built with this frame.

What made this Ace- Bristol-AC popular?

ac-ace-bristol-convertible-cars

The power-plant in the Ace-Bristol was light. Most importantly it had tubular chasis under its elegant body that was specifically handcrafted for it. After winning several race championships, it firmly stepped into the markets for the mass use. First distinctive step was to offer 2.0 Litre, six-cylinder engine.

ac-ace-bristol-convertible-cars-engine

Gradual improvements in the designs and the engines were incorporated after studying the buyer preferences. Due to its lightweight and amazing horsepower, this car became a huge hit amongst the people.

The most interesting part was that all of this models were built keeping mind the British market. While the classic design stayed almost on the same lines throughout, there were changes in wheels, tyres, engine etc. When one talks of performance and appearance in the world of convertibles, it has to be the Ace-Bristol-AC.

ac-ace-bristol-convertible

If you have to get hold of this classic model, in a world of over-restored Ace-Bristols, you will be indeed lucky.

The Magic of 2 Liter DHC/Buckland AC Convertible!

Every man is sentimentally attached to his first car and all the more if it is a 2-liter DH-Buckland AC convertible. These convertible cars were like a landmark in the journey of any man from boyhood to manhood. Buckland AC 2-liter was no ordinary car but a special one like the first kiss. It was around the 30’s that AC cars gained a good reputation and success in the market. People loved especially the ones from the sporting background. This how the idea for the Buckland sparked!

First launch:

2-liter DH-Buckland AC convertible

The first convertible of its kind was launched around the 1947. Entire styling of this model was modern especially the design. But it had a beautiful and traditionally charming constructed saloon or the drophead coachwork. This gave the Buckland AC a character that every man identified with.

The Inside Job:

50_AC_2-Litre-DV-14-interior

When one looks at the engine, he will find a pure mechanical genius. There was no confusion as to what the maker was looking out for. It came with a strikingly simple yet modern design as the exterior with a straight forward six engine 1991cc its interior. Ever since the Buckland – AC 2 liter became famous, there on there were several models with slight variations were released.

The Variations:

2-liter DH-Buckland AC

1950:

There were several changes made in the model to accommodate the tastes and requirements of the public. For instance in the 1950, the model that was launched replaced the Girling lever-arm rear dampers with the tubular units. For this the manufacturer had to add a sub-frame so that the lever arm could be easily mounted.

50_AC_2-Litre-DV-14-RMH-01

1952:

If you Google the images for the Buckland AC 2-Liter model 1952, you might think of it as an old time farm drive. But don’t be fooled, it is just pretty on the roads as the old classics by David Bowie. The luxurious seating and plush exterior with 4-door saloons were a major hit back then. Amongst all the models by Buckland the drophead coupes were the best.

1953:

These coupes came geared with an aluminum-paneled body which rested on the wood frame. Such intricate arrangements were made to fit the conventional steel chassis along with its rigid axle. You will find that this was indeed a one of a kind model with semi-elliptic leaf springs on an AC car.

AC_2-Litre-Inside

There were gradual changes in its long 10 year production but they were amazing and well received. Right from the hybrid braking system at the front with a cable at its rear to the wheel size, only the ones who bought and drove it felt the slight variations. You would be surprised to know that in the span of 10 years around 84 cars were built. The real magic and the driving force of these cars was its engine. All of these Buckland-AC 2-Liter models could outlive only because of their engine!