January 16, 2002

California museum hosts 40th anniversary Shelby Cobra display

Los Angeles, California – To honour the Shelby Cobra’s 40th birthday, founder and automotive entrepreneur Carroll Shelby and the Petersen Automotive Museum will collaborate to create a historical display featuring a number of landmark Cobra models. Brought together for the first time will be significant examples, including Carroll’s own famous Cobra Daytona Coupe. The six original Daytona Coupes won the World Manufacturers’ Championship in 1965 and still hold title as the only American marque to grab the crown.

The special commemorative exhibit is scheduled to open to the public on Saturday, February 2, 2002 – 40 years to the day of the actual delivery of the first Shelby Cobra prototype, and run through the end of February. A VIP party honouring Carroll Shelby on the evening of February 1, for VIPs and invited guests will precede the public unveiling.

“When I first met Carroll Shelby over 40 years ago he was a chicken farmer doing some racing,” said Robert. E. Petersen. “We wrote a story about him in Motor Trend and all of sudden, he wasn’t a chicken farmer anymore. He’s my friend and I am proud to be here with him today. It’s been a great run.”

The Shelby Cobra bested the world’s racing elite and made its creator — racing driver, car builder, constructor and entrepreneur Carroll Shelby, a household name over the last four decades. Below is a brief timeline of a few events that make him the legend he is.

  • 1962 – Shelby creates the original Cobra Roadster, the fastest production car ever made at that time; 0-60 in 3.9 seconds

  • 1965 – Shelby Cobra Daytona Coupe, only American car ever to win the FIA World Manufacturer’s Championship for GT cars, beating Europe’s best; Porsche, Ferrari, Jaguar, Aston Martin
  • 1989 – Shelby produces Cobra 427S/C Completion Cars. Shelby builds the first Viper chassis prototype
  • 1991 – Shelby launches Carroll Shelby Children’s Foundation that finds heart transplants for indigent children. Shelby inducted into International MotorSports Hall of Fame
  • 1992 – Shelby inducted into the MotorSports Hall of Fame of America, Michigan

For more information on the 40th anniversary of the Cobra go to www.40th-cobra.com.

Connect with Autos.ca