Like the coupe, the convertible will have a supercharged 5.4-liter V8 that generates 475 horsepower and an estimated 475 lb. ft. of torque. The Cobra comes with a six-speed manual transmission, front Brembo disc brakes, and rear discs. It is, of course, a rear-wheel drive beast. Other similarities are in the suspension setup, where the both coupe and convertible get a retuned MacPherson strut independent front and solid axle rear system with a Panhard rod. Ford says that the suspension has been validated on the track, courtesy of the Mustang FR500C, which recently won the championship in the Grand-Am Cup Series. Wheels are 18 inches, and are fitted with P255/45ZR high-performance tires. Also like the coupe, the convertible will carry the traditional Shelby rocker stripe, and will feature Cobras just about everywhere – including, for the first time, one on the front grille.
The interior has been tweaked to appeal to driving enthusiasts, with the speedometer and tachometer swapped, and a new choice of color scheme: Charcoal Black of Charcoal Black and Crimson Red. Differences between coupe and convertible, besides open air in one, seem to be limited to weight: in building the Cobra convertible, the Shelby/SVT collaboration added more than 125 lbs. of weight, mostly from structural reinforcements. We’ll see if there’s a performance difference later on during the year.
Photos by Ron Perry