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Written by independent automotive journalist Steve Statham

Carroll Shelby’s Cobra 427 Super Snake CSX 4404

 

Carroll Shelby was a larger-than-life figure who built some larger-than-life cars. But even when sifting through the legends of the various racing machines and tire smoking muscle cars his company built, some of Carroll’s projects really stand out. The tale of the Super Snake Cobra is undoubtedly one of most outrageous episodes of Shelby’s long career.

Seeking to one-up himself, not to mention certain European sports car makers, Shelby tasked his crew with the creation of a pair of 427 Cobras — already one of the most brutally powerful sports cars ever built — fitted with twin Paxton superchargers. After much custom fabrication, they succeeded magnificently. Power output was well into race car territory, and the cars were visually striking as well, with unique, oversize hood scoops necessary to provide room for the pair of superchargers.

One of the cars (CSX 3015) was owned by Carroll himself for a while before passing through the hands of a series of high-profile owners. In more recent times, that car has crossed the block at Barrett-Jackson on more than one occasion, generating headline-making sales. The other original Super Snake was wrecked in the 1960s and unsalvageable.

The story doesn’t quite end there, however.

Decades later, in the mid-1990s, Shelby began producing a series of 427 S/C “continuation Cobras” that incorporated a few modern updates but were otherwise a complete revival of the originals. Available with either fiberglass or hand-formed aluminum bodies, these Cobras delivered the looks, feel and raw performance that earned the Cobra its fame in the 1960s. The 427 S/C continuation Cobras were given CSX 4000 and, later, CSX 6000 designations by Shelby American.

It was inevitable that somebody would figure out this development was a great opportunity to build a continuation Super Snake Cobra.

And so it came to pass. The Cobra featured here, Shelby Cobra 427 Super Snake CSX 4404, scheduled to cross the block at the 2022 Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale Auction with No Reserve, is one of three authorized continuation Super Snakes known to exist. It rolled off the assembly line and was delivered to its owner at the time of Carroll’s passing in May 2012.

In substance, the aluminum-bodied CSX 4404 is a very close cousin to CSX 3015. It is powered by a 427 cubic-inch V8 boosted by two Paxton superchargers that feed a pair of 4-barrel Holley carburetors mounted on a cross-ram intake manifold. That engine sings a throaty song through black side pipes. Like all the best vintage Ford performance cars, the engine is teamed with a Toploader 4-speed manual transmission.

The Guardsman Blue Cobra incorporates all the 1960s-era detailing that made the 427 Cobra so special, like the chrome roll bar behind the driver. Like the 1960s Cobra Super Snakes, it has the special hood with cavernous scoop that makes room for the twin Paxtons.

The interior likewise follows the classic Cobra script, with black leather bucket seats, wood-rimmed Cobra steering wheel and S/C gauges with additional instruments to monitor boost and fuel pressure. The dashboard carries Carroll’s signature.

The car’s provenance is as locked down as any 1960s Cobra. It has had only one owner and has been driven less than 20 miles from new. Documentation includes the original Build Sheet and the original Shelby Automobiles, Inc., MSO signed by Carroll himself. This is one Cobra that has all the tools to achieve greatness, just waiting for a new owner to start blazing trails that will become part of tomorrow’s Shelby lore.

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By: Barrett-Jackson
Title: SUPER ONCE MORE: Shelby Cobra 427 Super Snake CSX 4404 shows what happens when a great idea makes an encore
Sourced From: www.barrett-jackson.com/Media/Home/Reader/shelby-cobra-427-super-snake-csx-4404/
Published Date: Fri, 05 Nov 2021 20:49:35 +0000

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