No Reserve 1993 Ford Mustang Cobra

As the sun set on the venerated Fox body Mustang, Ford could have simply pulled the Fade lever and let the 1992 Mustang run on another year with few changes. Instead, the snake-charmers at Ford summoned up the the 1993 Mustang Cobra, the hottest regular production Fox to date. Ford only made 5100, and many were modified, abused, and generally treated like other Fox Mustangs. A handful were treated like instant classics and turn up occasionally with ridiculously low miles on the odometer, veritable Matchbox cars that were never enjoyed. All of that makes this 1993 Ford Mustang Cobra in Suffolk, Virginia more interesting. Most of its 136,087 miles came under the command of it first owner. Completely stock except for one muffler, it’s no time-capsule, but it’s definitely a survivor that “runs great.” The listing here on eBay has attracted at least six bidders, lifting the market value above $14,500. That right front fender was “respected” years ago, according to the listing, which suggests it was either “resprayed” or “replaced” (though that would refute the original-except-one-muffler claim). The Cobra also wears the Fox series’ first 17-inch wheels, the snappy turbines shown here. Engine parts gave it more power as well.

A virtual duplicate of my ’89 LX 5.0 engine compartment, this one retains many parts that typically go missing before the 100,000 mile mark, including the sleeve on the upper radiator hose, the coil cover behind the battery, the distributor cover, and the air cleaner box. But enough about originality; what makes it go? A GT-40 upper and lower intake manifold and heads, plus some other changes add 10 HP on paper over the normal 1993 5.0’s 225 HP. If you’re thinking “big whoop,” take some solace in the motor1 dynamometer test showing nearly that number at the wheels, suggesting engine horsepower of 260 or more.

Unlike the LX 5.0 wing, the Cobra rear wing is functional, and certainly unique. The “Controlled Compliance” suspension grew from tuning by racing legend Jackie Stewart. The Cobra uses softer softer rear springs and smaller front anti-sway bar to keep its tires on the road for more real-world grip and better ride, at the expense of body roll. Some have called the Cobra “BMW-like.” Having owned both a non-Cobra Fox and several BMWs, I’d gladly replace my original 242k Mustang suspension with Cobra-spec parts.

Most of the interior looks great, but that leather upholstery shows the full 136,087 miles. My ’02 Buick Regal GS leather interior looked practically new at 292,000 miles, but your results may vary. Replacement parts are available for nearly everything on this car. Tidy up this Cobra as much as you like, drive it as much as you like, and you’ll barely diminish its value. Keep those original parts and it will always be worth more than a ragged out and /or modified specimen. How does this Cobra compare to your favorite Mustang?

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Comments

  1. Howard A Member

    Got to love the writers,,,”unmolested”? Yeah, right, people bought these for one reason, to molest them, and molest they did. I had an ’88 LX 5.0, and aside from straight line performance ( it was no 440 Challenger, btw) I didn’t care for the car one bit.

    Like 4
    • Dan Palmer

      I loved my 87 LX 5.0, although it did ride like a covered wagon.

    • stu

      Well, I can clearly see the seat is molested! Poor thing…does anyone know the A-s that tore a strip off the seat!

  2. Gremlin X

    Seems like a lot of bonamanzeros for one in this type of condition. I’d pay a few bucks more for the 20k mile ’87.

    Like 3
  3. Bill

    I have a 92 GT convertible with the
    5.0 with a 5 speed. Restored in 2005. Still looks good and runs great. Estimated value on it is only $10,500 Canadian. Values on these cars are all over the place in Ontario.

    Like 1
    • joshua s gigliotti

      The fact that it is a cobra makes it automatically worth a while lot more than any other fox body mustang. As far as mustangs go the cobra was made in way smaller numbers.

  4. Motorsport Whse

    Would be a fun car to restore, and kept as original as possible. Being a VA car though, and no pics of underneath worry more then anything else.
    And not all these cars were “bought to race” as another commenter so put it. It was the 90s, alot of owners had grown up by then and were more mature.

    Like 2
  5. Blakehasasoul

    High price! The January ’21 collector cars issue did a one page write up on these. It needs to be low milage and pristine for this kind of moolah. This poor pony was ridden hard and put up wet, with bad shoes, to boot (pun intended) I’m sure the driver has saddle sores (another bad intended pun) article 196 page 44-45

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