Found: A Mod Motor, Factory-Built 1995 Mustang Cobra?

Should this car even exist? The 1995 SVT Mustang Cobra came from the factory with the famed 5.0-liter Windsor V8, yet this one features the new-for-1996 4.6-liter DOHC V8.

From the eBay Motors listing:

The story goes that car #3629 of the 4,005 1995 Ford Mustang SVT Cobras was plucked off the assembly line and chosen for a very special assignment. It was the first Mustang Cobra to receive the 4.6-liter DOHC V8.”

This Cobra, the listing continues, was used as a test bed and show car. After its duties were fulfilled, it was rescued from the crusher and eventually landed in the hands of 12-time SCCA Solo Champ John Ames.

How much for this piece of Mustang lore? The price on eBay Motors is $18,995.

How to find the next one like this? Check out the new eBay Motors app

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Comments
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David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
4/30/20 11:27 a.m.

These look so good in Cobra trim: white paint, Cobra wheels, etc. 

Also, I just remembered something: I was at the press intro for the Mod Motor Mustang. It was at Road America. Got to drive a Mystic one, too.

pres589 (djronnebaum)
pres589 (djronnebaum) PowerDork
4/30/20 11:38 a.m.

Odd that it got the 1996's tail lights.  Also no CD player in what should be the top spec car? 

hartmandm
hartmandm
4/30/20 12:35 p.m.

In reply to pres589 (djronnebaum) :

Similarly, the 1995 Cobra rear bumper cover had "MUSTANG" letters embedded, not "COBRA".

Dieselboss15
Dieselboss15 New Reader
4/30/20 12:36 p.m.

Looks great! I'd like to know the VIN on that to confirm the numbers.

Javelin (Forum Supporter)
Javelin (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
4/30/20 1:00 p.m.

In reply to hartmandm :

It also has a Cobra R hood. Something smells fishy...

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
4/30/20 1:07 p.m.

In reply to Dieselboss15 :

From the eBay listing: 1FALP42D3SF219265

alfadriver (Forum Supporter)
alfadriver (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
4/30/20 1:13 p.m.
Dieselboss15 said:

Looks great! I'd like to know the VIN on that to confirm the numbers.

I'd run the VIN number to see if it's even a legit car.  Most prototypes have numbers that ID it as non legal cars for normal road use (which is why all of them have special exemption stickers, pointing out that they must be crushed).

Javelin (Forum Supporter)
Javelin (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
4/30/20 1:17 p.m.

In reply to David S. Wallens :

VIN check code shows 5.0. All the info online is the same article from the current seller. Fishy...

slowbird
slowbird Dork
4/30/20 1:18 p.m.

It also said something about it being used as a race car, I think. I suspect that even if this *is* really a prototype mod motor car, that it was not externally different from any other 1995 Cobra, and that someone "restomodded" it to look like a Cobra R after its supposed racing career ended.

AngryCorvair
AngryCorvair MegaDork
4/30/20 1:21 p.m.

quoting the original news post:

“The story goes that car #3629 of the 4,005 1995 Ford Mustang SVT Cobras was plucked off the assembly line and chosen for a very special assignment. It was the first Mustang Cobra to receive the 4.6-liter DOHC V8.”

since it was a serial production car and not a specific prototype build, it should have a regular VIN (which it does, per DSW's comment above).

also, it was built relatively late in the 1995 model year, around the time that engineers would get to run PTRs (Production Trial Runs) for upcoming changes.  The more closely-controlled the vehicle's future is (ie was it going to be kept Ford-internal for development work, as this one appears to be), the more radical the deviations from current-production could be.  in this case, the '96 taillights and the Cobra R hood are totally unsurprising to me.

i'm only surprised that it made it out into the wild.

Floating Doc (Forum Supporter)
Floating Doc (Forum Supporter) UltraDork
4/30/20 1:22 p.m.

That's a lot of money for a car with a questionable provenance.

glueguy (Forum Supporter)
glueguy (Forum Supporter) Dork
4/30/20 1:25 p.m.
Javelin (Forum Supporter) said:

In reply to David S. Wallens :

VIN check code shows 5.0. All the info online is the same article from the current seller. Fishy...

88 T-Bird Turbo Coupe / 00 Boxster S - CS AX / 08 Mazda 5 / 11 Audi A4 Quattro / 13 Ford Flex EcoBoost

It's at Streetside Classics.  This is a classic car sales showroom.  I believe that owners still own the car and they take a cut to try to sell it.  Since Streetside does the marketing, they wrote the copy and then also placed the eBay ad.  

By 1996 the car collector hobby was very mature.  Any car that was really unique, someone should have known to document it to the moon.  The body updates - hood and taillights - easily could have been done for press photos, etc to make it look more like a current year car, or later by an enthusiast - which would make it much less valuable since they are post-adds and original parts are then lost.  Someone looking to sell for a premium based on being unique should at least have letters from the owners to describe condition, mods and history.

 

ebelements
ebelements Reader
4/30/20 1:26 p.m.

I'm not as up on my smallblock fords, but from what I remember hearing, wasn't the 5.0 the better/more desirable motor in this generation? 

(fully anticipating being wrong)

Javelin (Forum Supporter)
Javelin (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
4/30/20 1:35 p.m.
David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
4/30/20 1:39 p.m.

In reply to Javelin (Forum Supporter) :

So now what is it worth? 

Javelin (Forum Supporter)
Javelin (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
4/30/20 1:43 p.m.

 

Guys, I worked at Ford for 32 years and I remember this car because I was the Manager of the EEC Design group at the time, and we often got involved when such cars were built to get the new engine's wiring sorted and the vehicle running on the new EEC module. The 1996 Cobra engine had a unique new EEC module, and this car was originally built as a 5.0L car, so a lot of wiring had to be changed to get the new 4.6L DOHC Cobra engine to run. Now, that said, Ford SVT may have updated the car once Production intent engines were available, and/or Environ may have pulled the original 4.6L Cobra engine and shipped a completely different engine to John Ames. (The car came to John disassembled.)



It was a Ford SVT car, it was in their fleet, but it was never a 1P or a 4P car as those are built by either the Pilot plant or DAP itself and they are built using the proper wiring harnesses. This car was built way before an 1P or 4P units 1996 Cobra units were built.
Javelin (Forum Supporter)
Javelin (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
4/30/20 1:47 p.m.

Here is an article from when the current sellers tried listing it for $22k four years ago with bogus graphics all over it after de-modding all the stuff the kid owner did:

https://www.yahoo.com/news/ebay-1995-ford-mustang-svt-cobra-prototype-rarer-140005914.html

 

Javelin (Forum Supporter)
Javelin (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
4/30/20 1:50 p.m.
David S. Wallens said:

In reply to Javelin (Forum Supporter) :

So now what is it worth? 

Take this for what it's worth, which is nothing, but in my opinion it's worth as much as any other heavily modified, rebuilt, and beaten Cobra is. I sold my 96 CAM car last year for $6000 which was strong money for what it was. This car was absolutely never a 1P prototype. It was built as a 5.0 and modified later. It's had the hood, wheels, and paint changed more than once. It's a story, and not a very believable one from my cheap seats.

Javelin (Forum Supporter)
Javelin (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
4/30/20 2:04 p.m.

Sweet mother, it had a "100 shot" on it when the kid bought it!

https://www.svtperformance.com/threads/what-kind-of-times-with-96-cobra-and-100-shot.51457/

alfadriver (Forum Supporter)
alfadriver (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
4/30/20 2:39 p.m.
Javelin (Forum Supporter) said:

 

Guys, I worked at Ford for 32 years and I remember this car because I was the Manager of the EEC Design group at the time, and we often got involved when such cars were built to get the new engine's wiring sorted and the vehicle running on the new EEC module. The 1996 Cobra engine had a unique new EEC module, and this car was originally built as a 5.0L car, so a lot of wiring had to be changed to get the new 4.6L DOHC Cobra engine to run. Now, that said, Ford SVT may have updated the car once Production intent engines were available, and/or Environ may have pulled the original 4.6L Cobra engine and shipped a completely different engine to John Ames. (The car came to John disassembled.)



It was a Ford SVT car, it was in their fleet, but it was never a 1P or a 4P car as those are built by either the Pilot plant or DAP itself and they are built using the proper wiring harnesses. This car was built way before an 1P or 4P units 1996 Cobra units were built.

All that tells me is that one curious State Secretary would question the VIN number, and boom- the car has to be crushed.

I would NEVER buy a modern prototype car.  Especially if it's an actual prototype build, and not one assembled with production tooling and whatnot (which the 4PP cars tend to be).

AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter)
AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter) Dork
4/30/20 7:43 p.m.

It's a cool car.  If I could get photos of it being worked on at SVT and John Colletti provided authentication docs, I'd be all over this.  But now it's just a 96k mile modded Cobra so a neat clean $5-$8 k car like Javelin said.

 

dean1484
dean1484 MegaDork
5/1/20 1:09 p.m.

That could have been a car with a great story.   Now not so much. .. 

Ford knew what they knew the 4.6 was coming when they originally designed this iteration of the mustang.  Remember OBD2 was mandated in either 95 or 96 but the 94 mustangs have OBD2 as well.  I am betting that the 4.6 was planed in response to the upcoming OBD2 regs.

AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter)
AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter) Dork
5/1/20 3:16 p.m.

In reply to dean1484 :

I still think it's a neat car with a cool story.  It just lacks authentication of said story.  That makes it just another modded SN95 albeit a tastefully done one.  I'd gladly scrounge up 18k if there were proof SVT at Ford made this creation.

pres589 (djronnebaum)
pres589 (djronnebaum) PowerDork
5/1/20 7:31 p.m.

My '95 Mustang GT did not have OBD2.  I believe the V6's were OBD2 for all years of this body style but not the V8's.

 

b13990
b13990 Reader
5/4/20 9:09 a.m.

In reply to ebelements :

I think most people would take the 5.0 over the original 2V 4.6, but the 4V 4.6 is a different animal. It's a tougher, lighter motor with more power from the factory. The only case where I'd take the 5.0 over a 4V 4.6 would be if I were planning to modify the engine pretty heavily. Under those circumstances you will save some money going with the 5.0... though this is probably less true than it was 10 or 15 years ago.

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