Currently reading: Reborn AC Cobra enters production in EV and 2.3-litre forms
UK’s longest-surviving car brand takes its classic roadster into the modern age with two new special variants

Specialist British brand AC Cars has begun production of two limited-edition versions of the iconic Cobra roadster - including its first-ever battery-powered version. 

Joining the recent trend of electrifying classic models for the new age, the AC Cobra Series 1 electric is visually identical to the 1962 original. Just 58 will be made (a reference to the number of years since the original's launch) at a price of £138,000 plus on the road fees. Reservations can be made with a fully refundable £2500 fee. 

It’s powered by a 308bhp front-mounted electric motor mated to a 54kWh battery pack. AC Cars says a range of around 150 miles is possible, with a 0-60mph time of 6.7sec and a 120mph top speed also claimed. Despite the substantial weight this system adds, the car is claimed to tip the scales at under 1250kg, partly thanks to its composite body.

The traditional ladder-frame chassis remains, albeit adapted to fit the new drivetrain. AC has also uprated the steering and brakes to “provide ultimate 2020 standards of ride and handling which do not compromise the 1962 style and appeal”. The interior will retain “traditional” features, and four colours are available. Deliveries will start at the end of the year. 

Also available is the AC Cobra 140 Charter Edition. Again, it looks almost exactly like the original, but uses a Ford Mustang-derived 2.3-litre turbo four-cylinder engine putting out 350bhp.This translates to a 0-60mph of 6.0sec and a 120mph top speed. 

The Charter Edition is, unsurprisingly, far cheaper than the EV version, with a retail price of £85,000. Again, just 58 versions will be produced, though a wider suite of colours is offered. 

A new V8-powered version of the revived sports car has also recently been revealed. Taking its power from a 6.2-litre supercharged Chevrolet engine, as found in the C7-generation Corvette ZO6, the Cobra 378 Superblower MkIV is now on sale from £129,500.


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Peter Cavellini 7 August 2020

All mod cons?

 Maybe it's the idea that you can have the look of a handmade car,and, have the never lift the Bonnet car of today powering it?, hand building a car would be considered today very labour intensive, very costly, also, unlike modern cars, you couldn't just take it to any old Garage and get it fettled or if you bump it, where and how long to get it fixed?, I'd like to think the prices for the cars included that.

HiPo 289 6 July 2020

Composite body?

The hand-made alloy body of the original Cobras is one aspect of what differentiates them from the replicas. So if the new AC is composite, that will be lost.Perhaps more troubling is the low power of the electric version. You could build a replica with a Tesla motor and batteries that would be much faster than this version and in fact faster than the original!But, having said all that, the original 260/289 Cobra is beautiful and the EV version, in any form, does future-proof it. 

FRI2 1 July 2020

Thats a beut at any angle...

Thats a beut at any angle....timeless...