Factory Five Shelby Cobra: What it’s like to build one

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When you ride one of these, you're like a rock star. People always wave at you, your thumbs up. People recognize them just like me. They recognize them from the & # 39; 60 when they were super popular, and Carroll Shelby raced with them, and they had several movie stars. I mean, there are songs about them.

My name is Paul Borror. This is my Factory Five Mk4 Roadster Cobra replica.

I had always been interested in working on cars, even though I don't have much experience with it, and I had already tried some restorations and it was not something I particularly enjoyed. So the idea of ​​building a kit car, if you want, was something that seemed interesting. When looking around, this Factory Five seemed to be one of the big manufacturers that existed, and the Cobra Replica is a car that I knew very well from my childhood. So we looked around and even found one that was partly started by someone, so that was a good start for me as a beginner.

We have driven it for a few years. We really enjoyed driving it, but I really missed the build part. I built another one, sold it and then I retired and got the urge to do another. So this is it. Number three.

It is a replica of a 1965 427 S / C, of ​​which there are, I think, about 300 and a few originals of this specific body style. This specific car was purchased at Factory Five in 2015 and it was about a year and a half to build. It was labeled as an assembled vehicle in Michigan in 2017. Not very glamorous, but that's what they call it.

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Factory Five is located in Wareham, Massachusetts. It was started by two brothers. Their vision was to build a Cobra replica based on a Mustang donor. So, about 22, 23 years ago was when they started doing that. Their idea was that you bought a Mustang, you bought their set and merged the two, and you ended up at the Cobra. It has changed a lot since then. The specific Mustangs, the Fox-body Mustang they use, are not many anymore, and to be honest, I think the builds have gone much more expensive. Those cars were very basic in the beginning, had donor suspensions and donor engines, and they even took the meters and cut them out and stuck them behind the dashboard. It was fairly rudimentary.

This car has a Ford Coyote. It is their 5.0-liter overhead camera. It is the engine that is actually in a Mustang GT. They were introduced in 2011. This is actually a 2015, so it's what they call their Generation II Coyote. Ford sells them like a crate motor. They sell it for people like this on the performance market.

You certainly get frustrated. There are always challenges. One of the good parts of the Factory Five kit is that they make the place where they accept almost any combination of powertrain and brakes and suspension and all that is a good thing, but it's also a bad thing because they are based on your combination of parts, you'll probably face a number of challenges along the way. It is definitely a modified car. There are people who buy these kits and think that it is like a module for a module together, and it is not. It is definitely a custom car that you make the way you want.

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There are several beautiful highlights along the way when you build it. One of the big ones they call the first start, so you come to the point that the engine is ready to start and that is always a big problem, the fact that it comes to life. This specific car, because of the box engine, was no drama at all.

I literally never drove a Factory Five Cobra replica until my first one was finished. I didn't know what to expect. I found the car actually quite easy to drive. In 2015, Factory Five released a 20 Special Edition because it was their 20th birthday, so this is a 20-year anniversary model. There were 20 of them. This is serial number three. They have introduced a number of new functions. This has a brand new designed independent rear suspension that they introduced with this model. The most important thing that I have adapted to this car is the interior.

The 20-year anniversary came with leather seats, so I decided to expand that theme and did all the leather interior. So the dashboard, the center console, the door cards, everything comes from a single hide.

Finished with number three, did it and of course had to think about another one. Retiring, I definitely have the time, and I absolutely enjoy the build. Thought about doing another Cobra Roadster, but Factory Five introduced a new version of the Daytona Coupe. It is actually the same car under the skin, but it is a coupe with a pointed nose, cut back, and they won the 1965 world championship with that car. So that's what I'm working on now. I have been working on the build for about a year.

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I discovered that there was a local club, the Great Lakes Cobra Club. We have become really good friends with a number of people. We do all kinds of events throughout the year and the social aspect that we really didn't expect. There is also a lot of activity on the internet, various forums and blogs and so on. I am very active in some of them and I am very interested in sharing my experiences with other people and I have even had a number of build buddies that have followed the path I have followed. I have been able to share some of the things I have learned and have also met some of those people in person. So that was something I never really expected.