AC has relaunched the iconic Cobra sports car. However, the original’s Ford Shelby V8 has been ditched in favour of either a 350bhp 2.3-litre Ford EcoBoost engine or a new, all-electric powertrain.
Production of the all-electric model will be limited to just 58 units – to honour the number of years since the launch of the first AC Cobra – with each carrying a price-tag of £138,000. First deliveries are expected to arrive at the end of the year.
It’s designed to look like the original Series 1 AC Cobra – and it will share a similar ladder frame chassis, albeit with a range of upgrades to allow it to accept an electric powertrain. AC has also replaced the car’s original braking, steering and suspension systems with modern alternatives, to comply with 21st Century safety regulations.
The Cobra’s new electric motor has an output of 308bhp and 500Nm of torque, which offers a 0–62mph time of 6.7 seconds. It’s powered by a 54kWh battery pack, which AC says will provide a maximum range of 150 miles.
The reborn combustion-engined version of the Cobra uses the turbocharged 2.3-litre four-cylinder petrol engine found in today’s Ford Mustang. It’ll also be built in a limited production run of just 58 units – although it’s a little cheaper, with a starting price of £85,000.
The EcoBoost engine has an output of 350bhp and 440Nm of torque, which AC says is enough for a 0–62mph time of around six seconds and a top speed of 120mph. Power is sent through a manual gearbox to the rear wheels – and the petrol-engined model will share the same chassis upgrades as the all-electric variant.
The bodies of both cars will be made from composite plastic and both will feature a set of yesteryear wire-spoke wheels. Buyers of the electric model will be offered a choice of four paint finishes (blue, black, white or green), while the petrol variant has a broader range of 10 body colours.
Both cars’ interiors will also feature a host of period-correct details, such as narrow-backed bucket seats, white-on-black dials, a leather-trimmed aluminium steering wheel and traditional toggle and organ-stop switchgear.
What do you make of the reborn AC Cobra? Let us know in the comments section below…