Shelby American and Shelby Legendary Cars will offer a limited number of Shelby Cobra Daytona Coupes and FIA roadsters honoring world champion driver Bob Bondurant. The continuation series will be introduced at the Barrett-Jackson Auction in Scottsdale, Arizona, from Jan. 12-21. Based on Cobras raced by Bob Bondurant, only 50 total cars will be built and each will bear a CSX2000 Shelby serial number. Owners of the new Shelby Cobra roadsters and Daytona’s will also receive driver training at the Bondurant Racing School.
“The small-block Shelby Cobra roadsters and Daytona Coupes crushed Ferrari to win the FIA sportscar world championship in 1965,” said Gary Patterson, president of Shelby American. “That achievement has never been matched by another American carmaker. This glorious history is one of the many reasons that Shelby still offers the iconic Cobras and Daytonas today. Our Cobras are extremely fast, very engaging to drive and retain classic good looks that still turn heads 50 years after winning it all. Given their rarity, the Shelby’s offer instant collectability.”
Carroll Shelby planned to race the Cobra from the beginning. Powered by a small-block Ford engine, the cars dominated sports car racing from 1963 to 1966. The competition model versions were piloted by legends including Dan Gurney, Phil Hill, Dave MacDonald, Ken Miles, Allen Grant and Bondurant.
“Bob Bondurant was a fierce competitor in just about every form of road racing, winning in cars from Shelby American, Ferrari, Chevrolet and many other top sports car companies,” said Lance Stander, CEO of Shelby Legendary Cars. “He was one of the first and most successful Shelby American drivers during the 1960s. Bob helped America win its first and only FIA Sports Car World Championship and we felt it appropriate to honor that important achievement as he prepares to celebrate the 50th anniversary of his world-famous driving school.”
In 1963, Bondurant joined Carroll Shelby’s racing team for the final three races of the season. He won all of them in a 289 Cobra roadster, including the LA Times Grand Prix pre-race; he could not qualify in time for the grid, so he started last and still came in 8th overall against the prototypes. Bondurant then went to Europe in 1964 to win the GT class at Le Mans with teammate Dan Gurney in a Shelby Cobra Daytona Coupe. He drove both Shelby Cobra roadsters and Daytona Coupes during 1965, winning seven out of 10 total FIA World Championship races. His incredible feat secured the FIA GT Championship title for Ford and Shelby.
“I’m very proud to have been behind the wheel when we won the FIA World Championship on July 4, 1965,” said Bondurant. “That victory was for everyone in America. I loved driving any version of the Shelby Cobra, from taking a roadster up a tough hill climb to hitting close to 200 mph in a Coupe on one of the high-speed tracks. The Shelby American team was incredible as they made the Shelby Cobra a dominating race car.”
The Bondurant edition Shelby FIA Cobra roadsters and Daytona Coupes will bear a CSX2000-series serial number and will be supplied as a turnkey car, minus the engine and transmission.
The FIA Shelby Cobra continuation roadster is based on CSX2345, which competed in seven FIA events, more than any other convertible. CSX2345 had five first-place wins and is the only Cobra to compete in both the 1964 and 1965 racing seasons in Europe; it also was the only roadster on the team in 1965.
The Bondurant edition Shelby 289 FIA Cobra roadster in fiberglass will start at US$149,995 and the aluminum version will begin at $249,995. A roadster set up to HTTP FIA specifications and for track use only starts at $289,995. The aluminum Shelby Cobra Daytona Coupe will start at $394,995. Each will be built to order and delivered with a Shelby American serial number for documentation in the Shelby American Worldwide Registry. Orders are now being accepted.