The classic sports car has been revived with 21st-century tech.
A few months back, specialist British automaker, AC Cars, introduced its first-ever electric-version of the renowned Cobra Series 1 to the world. Unlike the Shelby Cobra of old, this vintage track-car forgoes any semblance of V8 gasoline propulsion and instead utilizes a 308-horsepower electric motor and a 54-kWh battery pack. AC cars knew that 308 hp wouldn't be enough, however, and saw fit to dial up outputs and improve efficiency with its newest addition to the electric Cobra range, the AC Cobra Series 4.
AC Cars has partnered with Derby-based company, Falcon Electric, for the range-topping model to provide a viable electric alternative to other classic sports cars like the Caterham Seven 420.
While retaining the 54-kWh battery pack used in the Series 1, a more powerful electric motor with 617 hp and 728 lb-ft on tap improves overall performance phenomenally. This dialed-up powertrain enables the Series 4 to blitz from 0-62 mph in a far more impressive time of just 3.8 seconds. The enhancements, along with weight-saving measures, mean the electric Cobra can now travel up to 200 miles on a single charge, 50 miles more than the Series 1's 150-mile cap. Though it's unclear where the weight reduction strategies have been implemented, the Series 4 weighs in at around 132 lbs lighter than the Series 1, tipping the scales at 2,624 pounds.
Unsurprisingly, with the significant performance advancements over the AC Cobra Series 1, comes a hefty escalation in price; the AC Cobra Series 1 debuted with a £138,000 sticker price ($183,780 at the current exchange rate). The Series 4, however, comes in at an eye-watering £168,000 ($223,852). The AC Cobra 140 Charter Edition and the 378 Superblower Mk IV - the combustion alternatives from AC Cars - are both considerably more affordable. The former carries an £85,000 MSRP ($113,264) and the latter a £129,500 MSRP ($172,561).
"The march of the outstandingly efficient electric AC Cobras is gathering pace now", said Alan Lubinsky, owner of AC Cars. "Eliminating excess weight brings with it positive benefits for the car's owner. Lower overall weight reduces energy consumption, allowing the batteries to deliver a longer range and the ability to drive the car to AC's traditionally high standards for speed and acceleration which the marque has achieved over many years".