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*Please note that this vehicle is titled 1965. Online bidding is not available for this vehicle.
Exceptional Restoration by Dave Wagner | Black-Plate California Car in Original Color SchemeEdward Hyland, San Francisco, California (acquired new via Coventry Motors in 1964)Ken Comstock, Los Angeles, California (acquired from the estate of the above in 1989)Dan Dumphy, Kent, Washington (acquired from the above in 1993)Frederick Paul Shafer, Tacoma, Washington (acquired by 1997)Dave Lennartz, Seattle, Washington (acquired from the above in November 1997)Current Owner (acquired from the above in 1999)
The story of this magnificent 289 Cobra begins on December 11, 1963, when AC Cars Ltd. shipped chassis CSX2246 aboard the SS Ebre to Shelby American Inc. in Los Angeles.
Upon its arrival at Shelby’s new workshop at the Los Angeles International Airport, CSX2246 began its transformation from a partially assembled AC sports car into a proper 289 Cobra. Consistent with its early 1964 build date, this car was originally equipped with several noteworthy, late-production features such as rack and pinion steering, Ford electronics, and American-made Stewart Warner instruments. CSX2246 was originally finished in Princess Blue over red, a popular choice for the 289 Cobra; 11% of the model’s total production was finished in this attractive metallic blue color.
To further enhance the Cobra’s appearance, Shelby supplied a selection of Class “A” accessories including aluminum rocker covers, chrome air cleaner, bumper guards, adjustable wind wings, tinted sun visors, Smiths heater, and white sidewall tires. On February 27, 1964, CSX2246 was invoiced to Coventry Motors in Walnut Creek, California, for a total price of $5,195.
The Shelby’s first owner was Edward Hyland of San Francisco. He registered the Cobra on California black and yellow license plates reading “MJC 442” and drove it regularly, accumulating some 31,000 miles during his first three years of ownership. Mr. Hyland eventually moved to Los Angeles and, in 1973, retired the Cobra from the road. The car remained in storage until his death in 1988.
Around 1989, Mr. Hyland’s widow sold the unrestored Cobra to Ken Comstock, a firefighter living in Los Angeles. Mr. Comstock then embarked on a complete restoration to show standards, carrying out the project in his home garage. The remarkable story of his discovery and subsequent restoration of CSX2246 were detailed in the October 1991 issue of Guide to Muscle Cars, and the Cobra made its post-restoration debut at that year’s Palm Springs Vintage Race Concours.
In 1993, the Cobra was sold to Dan Dumphy of Kent, Washington, who registered it on vanity plates reading “ITSREL2.” After a few years in his care, CSX2246 was sold to Frederick Paul Shafer of Tacoma, Washington. In November 1997, the Cobra was put up for auction and Dave Lennartz of Seattle was the successful bidder.
Shortly after his purchase, Mr. Lennartz commissioned Bliss Performance Enterprises of Spanaway, Washington, to build a more powerful spare engine for the Cobra based on a proper date-coded 289 Hi-Po block. Included in the car’s file are the engine’s dyno test results noting 334.9 hp at 5,600 rpm and 355 lbs./ft. of torque at 4,300 rpm. This project was completed in 1999, and the car and spare engine were sold to the consignor, a collector who has owned a variety of important Shelby models.
Upon acquiring the Cobra, the current owner removed the car’s original engine and installed the more powerful spare. The matching-numbers engine – stamped 3304, which corresponds to the stamped footbox tag and original wax markings on the block – was set aside and accompanies the car at auction.
During the consignor’s two decades with CSX2246, he has successfully completed three Cobra 1000 Invitational Tours, an annual 1,000-mile rally organized by Tom Cotter and Jim Maxwell. More recently, the Cobra was entrusted to model authority Dave Wagner, who completed a comprehensive restoration, which included a bare-metal repaint in the original Princess Blue, new red upholstery and carpeting, and mechanical attention as needed. Since this work was completed in late 2017, the car has been driven approximately 50 miles and presents in superb, show-quality condition. At the time of cataloguing, the odometer showed 50,834 miles, a figure that the consignor believes represents the original mileage.
In keeping with its meticulous presentation, the Cobra is offered with important documentation, including the original California license plates, Mr. Comstock’s album of restoration photos, magazine articles, as well as copies of the original AC Cars and Shelby American invoices. Also included with the sale are a tool kit, jack, grease gun, and full-weather equipment.
Possessing a fascinating provenance, offered with its original matching-numbers engine, and faithfully restored in its lovely factory color scheme by a leading model expert, CSX2246 is certainly among the finest examples of the classic 289 Cobra. For the collector who has been waiting for the ideal Cobra to become available, we encourage serious consideration of this outstanding car.