Last Call: Then and Now Edition

It’s hard to picture just how small the original Shelby Cobra is without some sort of contextual comparison. Here’s a slab-side Cobra sitting next to one of the smallest sports cars of the modern era, a second generation Mazda MX-5 Miata. Compare and contrast.
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24 responses to “Last Call: Then and Now Edition”

  1. Rover 1 Avatar
    Rover 1

    Both of those cars are the originals, pure and balanced.
    But we also like the later V8 conversions because more motor = more power.

  2. Batshitbox Avatar

    AC Ace, for comparison. Note lack of fender flares, ‘steps’ under headlights, taller grille.

    1. outback_ute Avatar

      They kept building the Ace concurrently with the Cobra and later Aces look the same as Cobras.

      1. Batshitbox Avatar

        That seems to be what I’m discovering. The early ’60s nose was a progression from the late ’50s Ace, and not much special other than the slabby flares was handed over to Shelby for the Cobras. (Bodywork-wise.)
        (Can I just say, from typing all this I’ve noticed there’s the A-C-A-C-E, and then there’s the typographically convoluted AC Aceca, or A-C-A-C-E-C-A. They’re just taking the Mickey, aren’t they?)

        1. outback_ute Avatar

          And then just to change things up, the other model at the time was the Greyhound!

      1. Wayne Moyer Avatar
        Wayne Moyer

        That’s the perfect picture. Since the Elan was what the Miata team was obviously using as inspiration. You know except for the bit where it started every time.

        1. crank_case Avatar

          The Miata isn’t as exotically constructed as the original Elan, being steel, but you can see similarities under the skin, even though it’s technically a steel monocoque, there’s a similar backbone linking front and rear subframes. Biased I know, and everyone is sick of hearing how miatas are great, but the more time you spend with one, the more little well thought out things you find.

  3. Gianni Burrows Avatar
    Gianni Burrows

    I passed a Honda Z600 headed in the opposite direction today. I remember them as being small back in the day, but in the context of today’s vehicles, it was absolutely tiny.

  4. P161911 Avatar

    Had some friends stuck in the aftermath of this the other day. Yes, those are train wheels. The truck driver was not seriously injured.

    1. Batshitbox Avatar

      Yo Dawg, I herd you like trucks, so I put three trucks in your cab so you can train while you drive!

    2. nanoop Avatar

      “Stuck” is a gruesome word in this context, I hope everybody walked away.
      There are educational videos from insurance companies on how to fix load properly, based on real-life accident reports. My favorite statement: “The load was so heavy, I still wonder how it could move!”

      1. theskitter Avatar

        That is much scarier than most of the things we are scared of.
        For example: Bears.
        I have experience being scared of bears.
        Saw one sitting up in a tree, ready to drop on me like a ninja for all I was concerned.
        Nevertheless, bears can be contained by wire fences.
        Bears might go away if you yell at them.
        When it comes to flying train axles that do not care, I have no plan.

        1. Sjalabais Avatar

          That’s why I stopped watching Russian dash cam videos. I saw impending doom everywhere, while traveling through tranquil, save environments.

        2. nanoop Avatar

          Indeed. Maybe the bear up in the tree was dodging low flying axles?

  5. Mason Avatar

    On this date in automotive history: “Mario Andretti, whose name will become synonymous with American auto racing, is born in Montona, Italy, on February 28, 1940.

    1. JayP Avatar

      Or is that Aldo??

      1. Mason Avatar

        What is that supposed to mean?

        1. Fred Talmadge Avatar
          Fred Talmadge

          The real answer is both

          1. Mason Avatar

            Just looked it up thanks

        2. JayP Avatar

          Mario’s twin brother.
          Aldo posed as Mario at least once…

    2. NapoleonSolo Avatar

      It’s true that Mario was born in Montona, Italy, but you have to travel to Motovun, Croatia to visit his birthplace.