Live Auctions

Real 1966 Shelby Cobra 427 On Craigslist!

UPDATE – When we first looked at the ad for this Cobra, the asking price was $145,000, which seemed way too good to be true. While it was still in early access for Supporting Members, it appears the asking price was updated. Obviously, a zero was omitted and we have updated the article with the corrected price. Can you imagine landing a million-dollar Cobra for just $145,000?

It’s amazing what pops up on craigslist, especially when looking for significant and valuable muscle cars. This 1966 Shelby Cobra is said to be the real deal, not a kit car, and listed at a price that should clue any skeptics in real fast. The Cobra is equipped with the 427 and the seller provides just a smattering of details about the car, and next to no details about its history – which is sort of important for a vehicle like this. It does have one repaint in its past and was originally silver. Find it here on craigslist for $1,450,000 and thanks to Barn Finds reader Matt R. for the find. 

The repaint is a bummer, but it also reminds us that at one time, this was a used muscle car. An exclusive one, sure, but not so special that the second or third owner wouldn’t think twice about changing the color if they didn’t like silver. The interior looks to be in nice, driver-quality condition, and the classic Cobra steering wheel is one of the best looking wheels ever made. There are blessedly simple cars, even with the mystique that surrounds them, so the interior isn’t a terribly complicated cabin to restore if you’re seeking perfection. The seats and dash reveal no obvious issues in the photos aside from some general wear. Spartan controls and a 427 – what a great combination!

The seller makes reference to the fact that the 427 is the one to get if you want the ultimate in white-knuckle excitement, while the 289 an engine you can drive sanely on a daily basis. Regardless, I personally feel that a car like an original Cobra and its blatant flirtation with excess at every corner of the body makes a 427 the sensible choice if you’re going to own a car like this. An interesting way to compare the two without driving them is to read any Cobra owners message board, where the universal consensus seems to be that the 427 is a riot but that the 289 cars always felt more composed when it came time to drive hard. If you wished to drive a 427 in anger, you’re spending most of your time just trying to keep it on the road, whereas a 289 gives you more rope before it snaps back on you.

The seller points out that the community’s adherence to keeping tabs on where original Cobras are anywhere in the world makes it easy to verify this one as original, and that’s another point about the caretakers of these cars: they refer to the VIN numbers like children and grandchildren, remembering when they owned CSX-whatever and who bought it from them, where they saw it a few years later and so on. With the VIN and accompanying paperwork, it’s not hard to form a sense of who owned the Cobra previously, and it may even shed some light on when the paint job occurred (hopefully, not due to an accident.) These will seemingly always be seen as an iconic muscle car that holds appeal across generations, but with a price tag like that, only a select few will enjoy owning it.


  1. sisuman Member

    $1,450,000 not $145,000.

    Like 8

    I was about to sell my house. In hindsight, good thing a 0 was omitted!

    Like 13
  3. Cadmanls Member

    Wants that, take it to Barrett Jackson, not leaving anything on the table.

    Like 7
  4. IkeyHeyman

    Yes, friends, for the discerning motor car enthusiast who wants only the very best and who qualifies for access to a venue which has built a reputation for showcasing the finest vehicles presently available, there’s one place to go, and that’s!

    Like 49
    • Sean

      Sure thing! Found my bride there! And a Lawn Boy mower! On the same day…go figure!

      Like 35
      • RayT Member

        It’s okay, as long as you can tell which is which!

        Like 19
      • JRHaelig

        What do you mean “which is which”?

        You make it sound like there’s 2 things mentioned.

        Like 14
      • Steve

        Sean, hopefully not from the same ad!

        Like 6
      • FrankY Member

        And if she can ride the lawn boy your set for life 🤭

        Like 10
      • Stan Marks

        What a deal…… Getting a Lawn Boy & a bride to mow it, the same day, is priceless.
        You’re the man….

        Like 1
    • JMB#7

      I just sold a car on craigslist. The standard procedure seems to be to offer the seller about 20% of the asking price simply by texting the number to him without any dollar sign or explanation. Possibly it is not a linear scale, and for million dollar vehicles, you should only offer 10%. By the way, the guy I ultimately sold it to offered 90% of my current asking price, or about 82% of the original posted price. Funny how that works.

      Like 8
      • Air Boss

        Big move from 10-20 to 82-90…

      • Jim22

        I sold a 70 Mach 1 at the end of last summer on Craigslist. First time I ever used it for anything. I am not kidding when I say, I sold it in twenty minutes. I couldn’t believe it. And the guy offered me my price. I thought it would take forever to sell, happy it didn’t.

        Like 11
      • stillrunners stillrunners Member

        I mentioned it else where – we have a price in mind for our cars but have some adjustment in that price. Say I was asking $5000 for a car that’s worth that – that I had $4000 in. Yes most will offer half of that – over the phone or in a text/reply. When the first guy actually shows up….likes it – and then comes close to my asking – say $4800 – and he counts it off right there – I most times knock a little off that – say $4700….he’s happy and I’m happy. I do that a lot.

        Like 4
  5. Air Boss

    Loose change on the trans tunnel included?

    Like 2
    • David Hatch

      Loose Change, they want $1,450,000 Million and can’t even Detail the Outside, nor the Inside and your Selling a RARE COBRA, on Craigslist, when a there are a Huge Amount of High End Auctions they could see and touch (with owners permission) and they’d feel safer about winning an Auction, at least I would..

  6. steve

    In todays market it about $500000 too expensive

    Like 5
  7. CJinSD

    105 of the 260 “427 Cobras” sold for street use actually had the cheaper 428 ci engine installed. Does anyone know how to tell which one this has? Not having a real 427 might be a reason to avoid the most knowledgeable audiences for the sale.

    Like 7
    • Grumpy

      I looked at the engine pictures, and I am far from an expert, but my 428scj had a way different head/intake setup. You had to remove the rocker covers to remove the intake on it. The intake went into the cover area to meet the head.
      I know there were low/medium/ high riser heads on different FE blocks. Maybe someone with more insight can tell if it looks like a 427 setup.

      Like 2
      • Rob

        All FE’s had the intake manifolds meet the head under the valve cover. The car for sale has a 427 “Sidewinder” intake which places the carb to the left (driver’s side) of the engine centerline. I think it was an aftermarket piece. I have one on my 428 CJ Torino.

    • scottymac

      Easiest way to tell the difference is to crawl underneath and see if the block has the cross bolted mains. 427 would have a row of three bolts just above the oil pan rail. Not completely foolproof, I knew a fellow that restored old Ford NASCAR racers; he’d take a die grinder to 390 blocks, wallow out the indention in the block, and epoxy bolt heads to mimic a 427 block. Depending when Shelby sourced his engines, they would likely be side oilers, with the noticeable oil passage cast in the left side of the block.

      Believe these also used the Ford sidewinder intake manifold, Edelbrock’s inspiration for their Performer intake?

      Like 1
    • William Penland

      The 427 has main bearing cross bolts, three bolts on both sides of block just above the oil pan

      Like 1
      • Rob

        I think the screw-in freeze plugs were also 427 specific. I know my 428 CJ has pressed in freeze plugs.

        Like 1
    • George Soffa

      A REAL 427 side Oiler will have cross bolted main bearings, and you can crawl under to see the heads of three bolts, right above the oil pan , on the side of the block! I built one in 1969, for my ‘67 Fairlane , and I regularly wound it to 7500 rpm, with never any trouble !! 428s don’t have them !!

      Like 2
  8. David Harris

    A million dollar car with a poor man’s fuel line

    Like 10
  9. Mountainwoodie

    While is hard to believe I know a guy who bought a 427, not 428, way back when it was a couple of years old in 1968 0r 9. Bought it back , the same car (!) in the eighties and it sits today in the basement of his house. If you saw the house you would be hard pressed to believe a real Cobra sat below. But it does and he’s a heck of a nice normal guy. The car obviously means something to him more than the ever escalating money value. A real car guy.

    Like 12

    This is about as close as a guy can get to just sitting on the back of a big block and going for a ride. No weight to these and if I ain’t mistaken they still hold the record for fast from 0-100mph and back to 0, and it was build long before ABS or traction control, and with bias ply tires. What a car. Oh and I’d take the 428 over the 427 any day, TORQUE! we tend to by horse power but love and drive torque. But most people associate that suck you in your seat kick you in the gut acceleration with horse power.

    Like 7
    • Matt R Member

      I recall that 0-100 back to 0 stat on these cars and I read it years ago. 10 seconds flat. Amazing.

      Like 5
      • DR Member

        It was 13.8 seconds. Set by Ken Miles.

        Like 8
      • Matt R Member

        Ah my memory sucks DR. Still amazing!

    • bog

      Rattlehead – no, Cobra no longer holds that record. There are a number of exotics that have broken it, although for it’s time it was legendary and the record stood for years. My memory (a tad rusty) says that even the Bugatti Veyron beat it. Now I’ve gotta look it up..could be a Hennesy (sp) at this point. The big difference is that these were “relatively” attainable then, and the superstars now sell for this cars asking price and more, but they’re NEW..

  11. Gaspumpchas

    Hmm. Smells fishy. From word one. Like Ikey says- nothing says genuine like craigslist.. The fuel line. ugly cooler up top. No info to at least entice someone that might be interested, but says the history is available. And the big nut- Is It real? The real ones used a transverse front leaf spring, and I know there are kit cars now that use this setup, but that would be a possible clue. CJinSD, great point about the engine. You could make a 352 look like a 427, better make sure its the correct one. The whole thing is nuts. Who would pony up and million and a half for this? Like steve said the bubble has broken or at least lost air on these. Interesting to see what happens. Guy says he’s seller of discriminating motor cars. Oy Vey.


    Like 6
    • Solosolo ken tillyUK Member

      I was once advised that the easiest way to tell an original from a replica is to look at the chassis/frame. The original is manufactured from round tube and the replica’s use square tube. Don’t know if that’s absolutely correct but that’s how it was explained to me by a replica owner.

      Like 3
    • Ikey Heyman

      Hey, Gaspump, they don’t even list the car on their website. Maybe it’s one of those “honey I tried to sell it” deals.

      Like 3
    • RayT Member

      GPC — no leaf springs on the 427s. They received a new chassis, designed by a Ford engineer with a computer, and had proper wishbones and coil springs. Only the 289s had leaf springs.

      Not sure this is fake as it would be very easy to smoke out a phony. I’d want to look it over carefully and refer to an expert to make sure all the details are correct, though.

      Like 3
      • Gaspumpchas

        Thanks for that info, Ray T! Had a friend who had 5 originals, plus a Daytona. Rich guy that owned a ford dealership in NY state.

        Like 1
      • DR Member

        It’s CSX 3351. It’s right there in the ad. 3351 is in the Cobra Registry as being delivered 12/1966. It’s a real Cobra. Is the ad real? Dunno.

        Like 6
  12. bobk

    Good thing that they found that missing zero. My broker was about to get very concerned.

    “What, you want $145,000? What for?”

    Like 4
  13. Todd Zuercher

    427 Cobra VINs were between CSX 3101 and 3200. This one is out of that range so I’d say it’s not one of the originals.

    Like 1
    • Steve

      Wrong : 427 VIN numbers were from CSX 3000 to CSX 3360
      The first 50 were Competition & SC models

      Like 2
      • Todd Zuercher

        I stand corrected!

        Like 1
  14. ccrvtt

    Having used CL to try and sell a car I had better luck with a sign in the window. It would seem that if a legitimate Cobra owner wanted to sell he would merely pick up the phone and call any one of his well-heeled friends.

    I never realized how few of these cars were ever built – 655 260-289 cars and 260 of the 427s. Carroll Shelby was right – he could have retired if he just had a dollar (or two) from all the imitations that have been built.

    Real or fake they’re still desirable. Probably not $1,450,000 desirable, though.

    Like 1
  15. Del

    Cobra on Craigslist ?


    Like 3
  16. Gaspumpchas

    Yes JimS, its the luck of the draw with CL, since you have a world wide audience, the exposure is there good and bad. Its like the wild west, no policing and fraud. I have sold stuff, been stood up by someone who absolutely had to have the item, and have been called by know it alls who have no intention of buying the item but wanted to show you how smart they were. Also- have sold items that had been on a month or so. Go figure. You just need to be careful if you go someplace to look at something, that its not a setup to rob you.
    Sorry this is OT. Be careful out there.

    Like 4
  17. mtshootist1

    In defense of Craigslist, I bought a 2014 FJ Cruiser, with 5K on the speedometer, for 30K, in 2014, its still worth 30K now, I just happened to be the first one to email the guy at midnight. Bought a Harley Softail on Craigslist, a 1995 Harley sidecar in Butte for 1500 bucks, and a few other things. Advertised rental property on Craigslist, but I am like everyone else here, I look to see what the background is in the photos, if it doesn’t look like it belongs in Montana, like palm trees in the background, it is surely a scammer. Especially if they give you some song and dance about the title being somewhere in another state. In my opinion nobody advertising a real Cobra is going to make a mistake and forget a zero.

    Like 3
    • David Hatch

      I agree 100% with everything you said, and they said it’s not on there lot?

      Like 2
    • SMDA

      The owner could be some rich old senile dude. //// I really doubt that anyone buying a car north of a million bucks is going to get scammed. Maybe if they tried to rush it thinking they are pulling a fast one on a seller out of his depth, but then, they could sorely pay the price for that. Just wish the prices of things were more reasonable so people wouldn’t have to worry about this. Oh well, you are far better off buying a brand new replica anyway, better engineered, more fun to drive, a tiny percentage of the price. Real car men could care less about originality, they drive for the experience. All others are posers..

      Like 6
      • mtshootist1

        don’t forget that there are people out there like Bernie Madoff who scam millions out of people all the time. I will freely admit that I know absolute nothing about Cobras, seen a few, mostly going down the road. but I can smell a scam artist a mile down the road.

        Like 2
    • Matt R Member

      I had a similar experience selling a car on Craigslist. It sold in less than a day. The test drive was straight to the bank. This week I can’t even sell a bike for $50. Go figure.

      Like 1
  18. Ralph

    Make sure you meet bring cash and offer to meet the buyer at a local abandoned shopping mall for extra security……

    Like 4
  19. Knyte

    Wonder how many messages he’s getting from people wanting him to ship it to their “brother” overseas.

    Why Craigslist of all places to sell something of that rarity and price?

  20. Fastcat

    The speedo shows a cw movement . I thought the originals had Smith’s gages with the speedo having ccw movement .

    Like 1
    • moosie moosie

      I thought the same thing as you did about the speedo rotation, I tried researching it and found that it could be either as well as Stewart-Warner gauges were used as well as Smiths. At any rate I’m pretty sure that anyone willing to spend over a million bucks on a car will thoroughly investigate its heritage.

  21. Cheapr2keepr

    I got a Harley for my wife on Craigslist! Best trade ever!!! 😁

    Like 10
  22. Mark H

    They seem to have some pretty nice inventory and serve an international market.

    I don’t think they are “babes in the woods” or senile old guys.

    Like 1
    • Marvin

      Thank you. I own Sonoma Classic Motorcars in Healdsburg California. The Cobra is not on our showroom floor and is overseas. We do have an international presence and was put in contact with the owner by an associate of mine in Italy. Craigslist is just another form of advertising, I use many. We currently have an offer on the Cobra, it has been accepted and we are going through the verification process.

      Like 1
  23. Scuderia

    Undoubtedly a super cool car. Personally I find the 289’s infinitely better looking but that’s just personal taste. You have to really have your ego in check with owning a real cobra as 99% of the folks out there are going to be convinced it’s a $50K kit car.

  24. R2D-Bag

    If Im able to buy a 1.45 million dollar car Craigslist is NOT the first place I would look

    Like 1
  25. Comet

    A million plus dollar car with rubber fuel lines and hose clamps that close to the distributor? Don’t get me wrong, I’m as careless as the next guy but this seller is a real gambler.

    Like 1
  26. stillrunners stillrunners Member

    Still ok with CL….but there was a 1962 red fuelie Corvette with pictures of the motor with the FI and all just last night – he had it down for $24,000 or obo….after looking at it a coupe times I flagged it… maybe it’s back for $240,000 but I thought it was a scam.

  27. Russell

    Well it may not be a bargain, but if I had the money I’d rather buy it instead of a $330,000 240Z!

    Like 2
  28. Rob

    Scottymac – You are right and I knew that but incorrectly used the word “aftermarket” instead of the phrase “over-the-counter Ford”. Thanks for the clarification.

  29. Alford H Pouse Member

    And then the guy taking cash to seal the deal gets stopped by the police and has all the cash confiscated. Since 60 to 90 per cent of the paper money in the states is contaminated with drug residue.

  30. Jeffrey Bickel

    And I sold my 1966 Sunbeam Tiger in 1977.

  31. PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

    It took about 5 minutes to reveal a bunch of questions about this car.

    The ad says it is being sold by Sonoma Classic Motorcars, yet the car is not featured on their website.
    Also, the ad says to call a different number than is listed for that company on it’s website.

    I’ve mentioned here before: I easily sold the 2 vehicles that I advertised on Craigslist. Nice, honest descriptions and maximum pictures will do the trick. In both cases, I got close to asking price, which wasn’t give-away.

  32. Steve

    It’s a well known car that’s been out of the country for a long time. The car is sold!

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