One-Owner Project: 1993 Ford Mustang SVT Cobra

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Although some vehicle values have recently taken a beating in the classic market, the 1993 Ford Mustang SVT Cobra isn’t one of them. Like many of its Fox-Body brethren, prices continue heading north at an alarming rate. At least, the trend is alarming if you’re trying to buy one. However, if you have one in your garage, it is better than money in the bank. This ’93 Cobra is a confirmed one-owner survivor needing TLC. Harsh UV rays have taken a toll, but it could be a worthwhile and straightforward project if the bidding doesn’t stray too high. The seller listed the Cobra here on eBay in Katy, Texas. Bidding has raced to $22,700, although that figure is below the reserve.

It is common for vehicle manufacturers to have what is sometimes referred to as a “Skunk Works” division. Drawn colloquially from Lockheed Martin’s Advanced Development Programs, it is a small enterprise that usually designs and builds high-performance or limited-edition versions of production models. For Mercedes-Benz, it is AMG. For Ford in 1993, it was the Special Vehicle Team, commonly called SVT. It developed an updated version of Ford’s 1993 Mustang, adding mechanical and cosmetic enhancements that signaled Ford was back in the high-performance game. Cosmetically, the SVT Cobra received the usual aerodynamic upgrades, including spoilers, side skirts, and distinctive 17″ wheels. This car spent its life in Texas and is confirmed as a one-owner survivor. The location makes its rust-free status unsurprising, although its Black paint is heavily baked. The Cobra would benefit from a repaint, but there are no significant bumps or defects for the buyer to address beyond some light hail damage before undertaking the task. The wheels look excellent, as does the glass. Therefore, whipping this classic’s exterior into shape shouldn’t break the bank.

The SVT Cobra was more than a pretty face, with its engine bay housing a 5.0-liter V8 producing impressive power. SVT dug deeply into Ford’s parts bin to fit GT40 heads and an upgraded camshaft, intake, injectors, exhaust, and other minor components. The result was an “official” power output of 230hp, although many believe the figure is significantly higher. The ponies feed the Traction-Lok rear end via a five-speed manual transmission, while upgraded springs and Tokico shocks should keep the wheels in touch with Planet Earth. If any car signaled the end of The Malaise Era for the great V8, the ’93 SVT Cobra might hold that honor. It could blitz the ¼-mile in 14.5 seconds, while the company claimed a top speed of 150mph. That last figure has been the subject of conjecture because contemporary testing revealed aero drag saw the car fall short by a couple of miles per hour. The seller indicates this SVT is in sound mechanical health, with no modifications or changes. It runs and drives well, but a lack of recent use prompts them to suggest a fluid change, service, and tune-up might be wise before hitting the road. They include the original Owner’s Manual and Title with the car, as well as the Window Sticker and other documentation.

Ford and SVT produced 4,993 examples of the 1993 Cobra, with 1,079 buyers doing what this car’s original owner did by teaming a Black interior with Opal Gray leather trim. The seller admits this classic spent time parked in the sun, but its interior condition is surprising considering the UV exposure. The driver’s seat sports splits and seam separations, meaning the buyer will probably invest $1,000 in new front covers. The leather on the wheel is shrinking, but careful conditioning and stretching might reverse that problem. The plastic and dash look surprisingly good, as does the carpet. It might not be highly equipped by modern standards, but it had all the bells and whistles in a 1993 context. The buyer receives air conditioning, power windows, power locks, a four-way power driver’s seat, power mirrors, a rear defroster, genuine Cobra front floor mats, a tilt wheel, and an AM/FM radio and cassette player.

If this 1993 Mustang SVT Cobra had no significant paint or trim issues, I would expect it to pass $50,000 before threatening the reserve. However, its cosmetic needs undermine that figure, so I won’t be surprised if it clears that hurdle well before hitting $30,000. Its unmolested state, lack of rust, ownership history, and documentation are all favorable factors that would add to its growing value once the paint and interior shortcomings are addressed. If the new owner completes the work to a high standard, a price of $60,000 could be possible. It is worth remembering that those figures are current, and the extraordinary increases experienced by this model may tell a different story in the future. Conversely, with the classic market being volatile, it is possible that the worm could turn, and values may drop unexpectedly. Are you willing to roll the dice and drop a bid on this promising project?

Auctions Ending Soon


  1. Bob_in_TN Bob_in_TNMember

    Kind of an interesting proposition here. A highly desirable 1993 Cobra, not excessive miles, but in “worn” condition. Would be okay as a driver, but quite a ways from a show car. So it would take five figures (paint, interior) to bring it up the scale? Realizing most of us here are hobbyists not investors, is that a wise thing to do? Would that place the car more mainstream with respect to the continual increase in prices for nice Fox Bodies? Could this be a trend: something that looks more like a restoration of a later-year Fox Body?

    Like 3
  2. Mark

    I’m sorry but this is crazy money. For me, I’m putting my money on the 2012-2013 Boss 302 Mustang for the the same money or less for a car that is 10x the car these cobra were. Granted some like foxbodys period. But overall value PRICE and production figures the ‘12 and ‘13 boss 302 with it’s totally Forged RoadRunner 5.0 Are claimed to be the BEST handling Live axle Mustangs ever made by todays Standards. That’s were my money is, and if you find a Grabber Blue 2013, don’t hesitate, rarest color of the bunch which is what I own. Just Sayn’

    Like 9
  3. Keith Hagerty

    I agree an interesting proposition. It’s not low miles like the examples going through the auctions for $100k, but a good paint job, engine compartment detail, and seat cover replacements and it would look like new. If it goes for under $30 and you are willing to hold on to it for a while after the restoration there’s likely money to be made or miles of smiles.

    Like 0
  4. Harleyslawn

    This is one of my bucket list cars. This one is an interesting case. I can not remember when these cars were not special. It is interesting to me to have a car like this not have it garaged. I understand life changes and you have to roll with it but do not let your car rot like this, please sell it. I had a 97 GT 20 years ago but I had kids and the car seat would fit in the back so I sold it instead of letting it sit in the backyard to the elements. The best of luck to the seller.

    Like 0
  5. Big C

    I’m hoping the Fox Body craze rolls over into the SN95 and SN97’s! Keep talking $60g’s and up! I’m counting on you, speculator’s!

    Like 3
  6. Ray

    The wheels aren’t unique…they were from the Thunderbirds of the same era. A cheap way to fit a bigger wheel by using in house parts.

    Like 0
    • Steven

      You’re wrong sir they are not T-bird Wheels FYI T-bird wheels for 16 inch not 17s the cobras are directional

      Like 0
    • Arthell64

      The t-bird wheels only came in 15 inch while the 93 cobra came in 17inch. The wheels were unique to 93 cobras.

      Like 3
  7. Bill

    I bought a 2008 shelby convertible for 32k Canadian with 40,000 km on it and not a mark on it with a new clutch installed by the dealer I bought it from before purchase. This seems high.

    Like 0

    I’ve said it before- I absolutely love foxbody Mustangs, they were my first love as far as high performance cars are concerned. But as Mark said- $60k for a foxbody is utterly absurd, no matter the model or year. These cars are nowhere near as good compared to even the SN95 era. It amazes me that people have enough money to pay the prices these are going for these days. The SN95 and New Edge cars are leaps and bounds better in every way, and the only ones that are going for comparable prices to the 93 Cobra is the 03-04 Terminator. I can’t say it enough- I love foxbody’s and always will, but I’d never spend more than $15-$20k for one, Cobra, notchback or whatever. They’re just not that good for the prices they’re going for these days, and Ford built hundreds of thousands of them. Even the Cobra at over 5,000 built aren’t THAT rare.

    Having said all that, the GT40 kit, meaning heads, intake manifold and cam were supposed to be good for at least 40 horsepower, that’s where the “40” in the nomenclature comes from. So they made significantly more than the 230-235 they were rated for on the Cobra. All of the research I’ve done says they made at least 270, which the acceleration tests from the era confirmed. The 1993 SVT Cobra was the ultimate expression of the OG foxbody Mustang, so they’re definitely collectible and cool cars. I’d love to have one, but there’s no way I’d pay more than $25k for one in excellent condition. But I’m not rich, and I don’t buy fast cars for their investment potential or poser value, I buy fast cars to drive them exactly how they were designed and engineered to be driven. I’d much rather spend similar money on a Terminator, Boss 302 or even the 96-98 4 valve Cobra. They’re better cars, in acceleration, handling and even ride quality. It blows my mind that folks are spending $30k+ for the 93 Cobra in not even good condition.

    Like 3
  9. Rick Kersey

    As someone who bought several new fox body Mustangs back then, these prices are shocking. I remember well the flaws of the hatch back shuddering over bumps and the rear end stepping out when hitting a bump when turning..
    But they certainly were a lot of fun back then. Especially compared to what was being built from around 73 until then.

    Like 0

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