. Cobra Ranch Historical Automotive Blog: Featuring Wally Wyss

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Saturday, March 3, 2012

Rare Prototype Cobra Print

Question: What unbelievably rare Cobra, one that would be worth a million at any auction, is out there right now, but not with the body it became famous in?  Answer?  The Turd, AKA CSX2166. 
It showed up for the 1964 Sebring 12-hrs. in April with a 427 engine under the hood, and onlookers wondering if the extra "D-shaped" air intake vents, shaped suspiciously like 250GTO air intakes, were purposely put there just to bug Enzo.  As a rudimentary test car developed by Ken Miles using the leaf sprung suspension, it was built on a car that had previously been in an accident.  Miles smacked the car into a tree in practice and spent all night hammering it out. He started the race the next day, but his ribs hurt (he either cracked them or broke them the day before), so he turned over the wheel to John Morton who was in the car when it blew its engine.  It was later rebuilt with another body, but accounts differ so we're checking on that and will add to the story at a later date. 
CSX2166 in its 1964 guise has been the subject of a portrait by Wallace Wyss.
"I tried to stick to the historical look of the car, even though the temptation was there to make the car more complete," says Wyss.
"I figure in the rush to repair it overnight they left out some things like the side 'gills' on the front fender--the body was pretty wrinkled when it went into the race but you don't see that from this angle at this distance."
The print is now available in size 12" x 18" on heavyweight watercolour paper. Each one is signed by the artist and numbered serially.

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