I don't want to p*ss on Shelby's fireworks but.........
So, the first Cobra; who what and when ?
Sorry to everyone who thought the day ol' Carroll stuffed a V8 into an Ace was the birth of the Cobra, but here is another that appeared a few years before.
Nat Buchanan of Sydney was already producing glassfibre bodied cars in the fifties based on the usual Ford or Triumph mechanicals, including the bodies for the good looking Buckle coupe that deserved a better fate. By 1958 they had a new sportscar designed around Standard 10 running gear (far sexier than a Maserati any day) and with claims to an outrageous 80 MPH were advertising it in the national motoring mag's as the;
COBRA ! ! ! !
Yep, they beat ya to it !
I cannot believe that you will find many people to agree with you, anyone can put a name on a product but that does not give it that iconic status that Carroll Shelby achieved for the Cobra/AC .Firstly the AC Ace was a very successful sports car in its own right long before CS took it to higher regions of fame and fortune. The AC Aceca ( bristol) was the first car that I genuinely achieved 120mph (indicated) in the UK back in 1958 on the dual carriage between Stourport and Kidderminster (no NSL then) As regards a name , just think how many cars have been called a "Hornet" over the years , but only the BMC Mini thingy registers with most people. Therefore the brand "Cobra" only belongs in its rightful place on genuine AC products. Back in 1958 there were a whole host of fibre-glass kit-cars on sale in the UK on which we incorrectly displayed all sorts of badges, mainly "Maserati and Alfa-Romeo because in those days they were more important than Ferrari and no one cared what you called your car, Back then lawyers were used for funerals,births and weddings not to tell you what you could call your automobile !! I am of the opinion that without the adventures of C S your Mr Buchanon would have been lost to history .
Here is an example of a couple of fibre-glass kits available in 1958 similar to your aussie edition, we used to adorn these with all sorts of badges.
I cannot believe that you will find many people to agree with you, anyone can put a name on a product but that does not give it that iconic status that Carroll Shelby achieved for the Cobra/AC .Firstly the AC Ace was a very successful sports car in its own right long before CS took it to higher regions of fame and fortune.
Easy Tiger, I was only stirring the pot!
Of course the better known Cobra deserves it's recognition, and the fact that the earlier Buchanan version failed to make any impression consigns it to the forgotten bin. Some companies did register names and take legal protection, so the Daimler Dart became the SP250 thanks to Dodge, but obviously Wolseley never took Hudson to task over the Hornet. Can't see Hyundai launching a Cortina any time soon either, but it is a shame in a way that all the good names have been used, so now we have anonymous far eastern blobmobiles called either random alphanumeric things like the i40, or else those Scrabble accident make up names like Elantra. And while I am on the subject, how did a Nissan 4WD get to be named after a small island near Venice famous for glass making?