The Shelby Cobra has always been a prime example of what a muscle car could be. The combination of a lightweight chassis paired with a powerful V8 engine has drawn many hot rod owners into the fold. When engineered correctly, this combination can provide the agility supercars crave and the straight-line performance drag racers desire.
While some might see the Shelby Cobra as an over-exercise, to the trained eye the Shelby Cobra is a way to advance a vehicle with technology to make it lighter, faster and more desirable. The continuation series of Shelby Cobras has moved on further as Classic Recreations introduced their all new carbon fiber Shelby Cobra, named The Diamond. The Diamond is expected to be the pinnacle of weight savings and material opulence using a full autoclave-hardened carbon fiber body weighing just 88 pounds.
Once strictly reserved for the highest racing forms, carbon fiber has made its way into the aftermarket automotive industry. The stiffness and strength of carbon fiber allows it to be used on body panels, valve covers and even the wheels of the latest generation Shelby GT500. Although it is more prevalent in the automotive scene today, we rarely see a full body including floors, trunk, engine cover and doors made with it.
A lightweight body is only one end of the spectrum when Classic Recreations designed The Diamond. To match the build quality of the chassis, a Ford Performance Gen 3 Coyote 5.0 liter engine was purchased. Its power target and desired linear powerband compelled Classic Recreations to contact VMP Performance for its 2.65-inch Odin unit. The Diamond was built to counter supercars at the highest level of track racing, which is why full independent rear suspension was engineered. While owners like to shift through a TREMEC T56 Magnum, stopping will be centered around the four-corner-mounted Wilwood six-piston calipers.
“Carroll Shelby taught me the importance of pushing boundaries through innovation and passion,” says Jason Engel, founder and vice president of design and engineering at Classic Recreations. “A Carroll dream has always been to put the most powerful engine possible in the lightest, most agile car imaginable, and it is our honor to have taken on that challenge.”
Classic Recreations will present a limited run of The Diamond in honor of Shelby American’s 60th anniversary. These vehicles will cover the serial number range from CSX4521 to CSX4530 and will cost a pretty penny at $1.2 million. Although designed for the track, the price may exclude some owners from wanting to play with a track day. However, for anyone looking to take it to the Circuit of the Americas, I have my helmet ready anytime!