This is an extremely well-preserved, all-original 1993 Ford Mustang Cobra. This outstanding car comes with extensive documentation including multiple 100-point judging sheets from the Mustang Club of America, the original window sticker, registration history back to 1994, and Ford SVT vehicle certification with build date of 5/14/1993. It was number 3,162 of 4,993 Cobras built that year. It also comes with both the short and long 1993 Ford Mustang Cobra vehicle brochures in as-new condition.

Presented in Teal Metallic clear-coat paint with an Opal Gray cloth/vinyl interior, this car appears exactly as it did when new and is original all the way down to its Goodyear Eagle ZR45 tires. In fact, the only thing that is not original on this car is its brand-new Ford Motorcraft battery.

SCM Analysis


Vehicle:1993 Ford Mustang SVT Cobra
Years Produced:1993
Number Produced:4,993
Original List Price:$18,505
SCM Valuation:Median to date, $15,000; high sale, $43,200
Tune Up Cost:$200
Distributor Caps:$22
Chassis Number Location:Door tag, driver’s door; plate at base of windshield on driver’s side
Engine Number Location:Partial VIN stamped on rear of block, behind intake manifold
Club Info:SVT Cobra Mustang Club (SCMC)
Alternatives:1989 Chevrolet Camaro 1LE, 1989 Pontiac Trans Am Turbo 20th Anniversary, 1994 Ford Mustang Cobra
Investment Grade:C

This car, Lot 385, sold for $27,500, including buyer’s premium, at Barrett-Jackson’s flagship auction in Scottsdale, AZ, on January 27, 2016.

Almost all generations of the Mustang have successfully captured the hearts and imagination of the youth of America. Globally, the Mustang is as American as apple pie and baseball. When it turned the automotive world on its ear in 1964 as a gussied-up Falcon, it was heralded as the best thing since square cheese.

As the Mustang continued to grow physically, so did the displacement, and by 1973, our beloved federal government (and arguably the insurance lobby) became the cops at the front door of the muscle-car kegger. In 1974, Ford reskinned the Pinto and called it the Mustang II. These were dark days for sure, but surprisingly, sales did not suffer too badly. It was a new world of fuel economy and emissions regulation, and Ford did what it had to do to keep the brand alive.

That Foxy 5.0

By 1979, Ford knew it had to bring some magic back to the Mustang. The Fox chassis had already been in use in the Fairmont, which eventually morphed into the LTD II. That car’s benign design could be loved only by a humorless government official, and according to Ford, the chassis was the perfect platform for a new Mustang.

Also introduced in 1979 was the “5.0” badge on the front fender. It then went away for two years, reappeared on the 1982 GT, and announced metric displacement until 1993, when it quietly disappeared on the 1994 redesign. That small detail was iconic in and of itself — the Fox Mustang became known as the “5-point-oh Mustang” to a generation hungry for performance.

Many trim packages were introduced in the 14-year run to keep buyers coming back. The 1979 Pace Car was the initial standout, and the 1984 GT350 gave a nod back to the glory days of Shelby. By the mid-1980s, the SVO (Special Vehicle Operations) with a turbo 4-cylinder was designed to go up against European offerings such as the Porsche 944. The model was certainly unique but failed to gain real traction. It was discontinued after 1986.

The return of the Cobra

By 1993, Ford knew the Fox–body Mustang was getting old, and they decided to inject some last-hurrah testosterone into the model by introducing the Cobra. The Special Vehicle Team (SVT — no longer SVO) was charged with its creation.

This performance package included ground effects, which resembled the parts on the GT but were different, a unique wing, special suspension, rear disc brakes, and SVO-esque taillights. Choice mechanical upgrades, only available in the Ford Motorsport Catalog, bumped horsepower to 235 through the addition of smog-friendly GT40 heads, and a custom intake, cam and exhaust system. This marked the first time a special-edition model from Ford actually used Ford’s catalog parts to increase performance.

Production was limited to exactly 5,100 cars, 107 of which were Cobra R models, which were considered rather extreme for the day but are top brass in the market today. The remaining 4,993 cars could be had in any color as long as it was black, red or teal, which is the tropical shade of our subject car.

Low miles

While the Barrett-Jackson description gave no indication of this car’s mileage, some Internet digging revealed the odometer showed a shade over 3,000 miles. The pictures certainly support this as well, but they also show an aftermarket Hurst shifter handle, which should be the first thing to go. The rubber-insulated factory handle will fit on the Hurst base and won’t scream “modified,” which can detract from value.

The 1993 Cobra has held steady value since its initial depreciation and has been a $12,000 to $15,000 car for 20 years. I have seen 100,000-mile dogs as low as $8,000, but the market is changing here, and prime examples such as this car certainly command a premium.

Later Fox cars will last for 200,000 miles if taken care of, but many were passed down to teenagers when the cars were at the bottom of their depreciation curve. Less so for the Cobra because of the price point, but really, who drives a Mustang and doesn’t lead-foot the thing?

As prices move up, we will start to see rough examples get restored, and that’s a real challenge with the unibody Fox chassis. These cars start to flex and squeak over time, and that is where nice low-mile examples like our subject really shine. They were nice cars to drive when new, and getting that new-car feeling back is really hard after 100,000 miles of teenage power-shifts.

Big money, or is it?

This price — $27,500 — may seem like strong money, but the new reality is that Fox Mustangs are picking up steam as those once lead-footed teens start to influence the collector market. Expect the best cars to rise the fastest. I’ve seen $30,000 for some Fox-body Saleens, and the Cobra is not far behind.

A fully loaded GT with under 20,000 miles and no mods can fetch over $15,000 these days, and there were many more of those made than Cobras. By way of comparison, Barrett-Jackson also sold a 100-mile hermetically sealed 1984 GT350 convertible with the 5.0 motor for an eye-opening $71,500. Ford made more 1984 GT350s than 1993 Cobras, and the Cobras are much better cars.

I don’t see the buyer getting a better deal on a better car anywhere else, so I’ll call this one well bought. The new owner has a great example of a performance icon of the 1990s, and there’s plenty of upside left.

(Introductory description courtesy of Barrett-Jackson.

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