Big engine, little car. It’s an age-old recipe that has been putting big grins on the faces of car guys the world over ever since modifying began. Back in the ’60s Carroll Shelby did just this with the AC Cobra – shoehorning big Ford V8 motors into the light UK-built chassis to create one of the most legendary cars of all times. Magnus Jinstrand has always wanted to create his very own Cobra and when it all started to materialize for him he decided to take things a little further than originally planned…
… further evolving the original notion that defined Shelby’s cars and turning it into something all his own.
There is absolutely nothing subtle about this car, from the moment you lay eyes on it, it shouts out at you with aggression. From the rather large supercharger rearing its head out of the hood…
… to the copious use of carbon fiber that makes up its custom aerodynamic package.
There’s no hiding the fact that this is a superbly executed modern-day take on the original, right down to the 18-inch and slick-shod Rondell wheels. A Brembo braking package borrowed from a Lancer Evolution VIII hints that there must be a lot of performance hiding within…
… but nothing can quite prepare you for that initial visual impact the removal of the engine cover creates. Magnus’s initial plan was to fit a Mercedes-Benz V8 engine into the Autofab chassis that lies beneath the Dax-built exterior, but when the guy supplying him the engine gave him choice to go for a V12…
… well, let’s just say that he just couldn’t pass it up. The 6.0-liter V12 is a twin-spark (yes that means 24 spark plugs!) 36-valve (two valve per exhaust side) beast engineered to deliver a silky smooth and effortless surge of power. In its stock 2001 Mercedes-Benz CL600 configuration it developed 362hp and 530Nm (39 lb/ft)…
… so to make things a little more interesting Mangus added a Lyshom 3500 twin-screw supercharger, modifying it to accept a custom twin-throttle set-up. Lots of custom work was required to not only fabricate the two intake plenums, but also to plumb everything into place in a visually-gratifying fashion.
From the color-matched piping to the sheer size of the powerplant, everything is meticulously executed.
Custom stainless steel manifolds snake down…
… on each side of the Cobra…
… and connect onto a pair of big bore side pipes that flank the bodywork, dumping gasses before the rear fenders.
Underneath it all Magnus has adapted front and rear suspension from a Corvette C4 and uprated it with Öhlins adjustable dampers. Their remote reservoirs have been relocated within easy reach for fumble-free access to the adjustment knobs.
In its current configuration the supercharged V12 pushes 492hp to the wheels (around 600hp at the crank), all thanks to a very gentle 0.35bar (5psi) of boost. Drive is sent to the rear end via a Getrag six-speed transmission mated to a Helix twin-plate clutch and a custom propeller shaft.
Avon slicks measuring 245/645R18 at the front and a massive 305/680R18 at the rear offer plenty of grip through the corners…
… while Micke Svensson – who is responsible for all the carbon fiber on the car – designed and created the rear diffuser…
… which along with the adjustable Carrera Cup inspired rear wing helps keep that rear end planted. The whole exterior has been finished off in a flat bronze hue, custom mixed and sprayed by one of Magnus’s friends.
If you’re wondering why the trunk lid has been swiss-cheesed lifting the lid reveals why. On top of the front-mounted copper radiator a second one has been fitted in the rear for extra cooling.
Despite the car being solely for track racing and events like Gatebil…
… everything has been finished off beautifully. this being especially true with the interior where Auto Meter gauges…
… have been centrally mounted in the carbon fiber dash panel.
It may be a tried and proven formula, but big engines in small cars just never seem to get old. Magnus’s undeniably-Scandinavian approach to his project has turned his dream of owning a Cobra into something even he never initially fathomed. Something tells me that Carroll Shelby definitely would have approved!
Dino Dalle Carbonare
492whp and 650Nm @ 0.35bar (5psi)
Mercedes-Benz V12 from a CL600, custom mounted Lyshom 3500 supercharger, homemade adapter plate for twin throttle bodies from a Volvo 960, Vems ECU with custom 24-channel spark power amplifier, 4x ignition coils from a Saab V6 24 valve, custom made intake plenum, custom headers in 5/8 stainless steel, sidepipes in 4-inch stainless with 3-inch’ inserts, custom oil sump and relocated oil filter, custom copper radiator in the front and aluminum radiator in the rear, 2x Bosch Motorsport 044 fuel pumps
BMW Getrag 6-speed transmission, custom flywheel, twin-plate Helix clutch, custom chromoly propshaft built by Svea bil.
Front and rear suspension from Corvette C4, custom four-link in chromoly, adjustable sway bars from Sellholms, Öhlins coilovers front and rear, chromoly driveshafts built by Svea bil, Lancer Evo VIII front and rear brake calipers with 330 mm discs front and 280 mm rear, Wilwood e-brake
Rondell 18X9.5J front, 18X11.5J rear, Avon slicks 245/645R18 front, 305/680R18 rear
Custom made by Dax, carbon fiber custom front spoiler and splitter in carbon fiber, Porsche Carrera Cup inspired rear wing in carbon fiber, custom made rear wing mounting, carbon fiber rear diffuser. All carbon parts built by built by Micke “wunderbaum” Svensson, custom mixed color painted by Fredric Mattsson
Custom chassis from Autof AB in Helsingborg with roll bar and air jacks in all four corners, Tillett carbon fibre seats, custom Micke Svensson carbon fiber dash panel, Auto Meter gauges, Racelogic computer
Emil, Leffan, Agge, Pelle, Fredrik, ”Jevlar,” Loffe, Henkan, Micke, Andreas
You guys talking about Shelby suing.. The guy that built this said that he met Shelby before he died and that he loved the car. So, yeah.
Awesome car. Looks sexy and mean as hell. I just wish people would stop mentioning Mr. Shelby every time a Cobra is seen or talked about. Dues need to be giving to AC, the creators of this awesome kit car, which many have done so much with.
Love this! I've been dying to see it for so long now! I get what everyone is saying about the 600hp but all he would really have to do is want to and he'd be hitting 4 digits. The reason i love this is the oddity and the insanity, i'll forgive a slightly more sane power figure. This just may get my vote for car of the year, this or that 2JZ skyline.
I am sure there is plenty of hidden power under that bonnet. But I am pretty sure this is enough. The layout of the engine ,and the symetry of V12 is perfect. Besides this V12 is the reason for this car being here, very unique. There are so many V8 shelby out there. By the way V12 engine is around 667 lb, a big block v8 American is around 600 with carbs , 550 with alu head. After some research I changed my mind about thinking this is a heavy engine.
awesome charger setup, it's soo clean. however i cant help feeling it would be much nicer sans wing.
It's very nice but i can't help but feel disappointed at the 492HP...
If it was a more light weight engine, sure i'd understand but...i dunno.
Still love it though.
What was the reasoning behind putting in a more expensive, more complicated, bigger engine that makes less power than a Ford crate engine? Especially considering that this is a track car and not a show car. And the over elaborate intercooler setup for 5 psi? I admit the engineering in this is top notch work that must've required a lot of skill and time, but for what gains? Uniqueness by itself doesn't count for much on the track.
I have to disagree with the title of this piece. It is not a Shelby-American chassis or body and it's got a big honkin' German motor that makes less horsepower than a naturally aspirated big-block Ford. I think Shelby probably would have sued for copyright infringement, not approved.
I do love the color, the dash, and the aero package on this one though! I'm on the fence regarding the Mercedes V12.
@tenpennyjimmy there would be enough air dispalcement while moving that the exhaust being so close to the tyres wouldn't be an issue. If you also look, the tip on the pipes are pointed out to the side of the car. I would be more concerned about the dude sitting next tom him on the start grid LOL...And the fact they he is running on slicks means that they handle a far higher temp than conventional road tyres.
Found one https://vimeo.com/44348012
@JoshuaBoey I think it's called "brown" :p
@Wildcardfox Go ahead... ;)
@robzor It was the same for me. Heard lots of rumours about it and when I finally saw it being unloaded from the transporter at Mantorp I made sure to hunt the owner down and schedule a shoot. Epic in every way!
@mk1dr770 Yep, power isn't everything. Question is would you rather have a 1200 HP car that weighs 2000 kg or a 600 HP one that tips the scales at 1000 kg?
@dem00n Exactly what I was thinking, with 6L it would be cool to see some crazy power figures, even if it could only smoke tires. for 500hp might as well have stuck with a 4cyl or the V8
@dougbunge Sue? How? Its a kit car.
@dougbunge He would have laughed and told him good on ya.
@dougbunge True but let them believe what they want. Expect to be called a hater because you bash on a Gatebil build. hahaha...
@Hanma Doing things differently at times is far more impotent to people. Guess Magnus is one of those people
@RBurroughs430 I agree with you. As a guy who has met Carrol Shelby and coming from a family that collects original Shelbys, I know that Shelby was a law-suit fiend (and bad business man). He'd sue at the drop of a hat and would definitely turn over in his grave at the thought of anything besides an American v8 in that bay. Personally I think it's pretty sweet, but definitely agree about the Shelby bit.
@Hellrace Sounds nice!
@sean klingelhoefer doo doo brown
@speedhunters_dino Ofcourse ı would prefer lighter cars. Do you have any information aow much this car weighs? The answer could satisfy all of us.
@CrisCiunganu @dem00n Remember you have to account for the power delivery as well. It's hard to say how this car delivers it's power without seeing a dyno graph, but 492 delivered linearly can be way quicker depending on where you're driving than a higher number that is peaky. I'm sure the owner and builder of this car did the V12 just to be different, but 492hp in anything under 2500lbs is going to be fast as hell in most places if you can drive it to the max. I would have kept a V8 as well, but this is pretty cool.
@Hanma eh I meant to say important not impotent lol
@speedhunters_dino Which would be a wonderful mindset for a weekend street monster or a show car, but this looks like it's meant to be a no holds barred track car. With this setup, all doing things differently is going to get him is a nice track-side view of the tail lights of a more traditionally built Cobra.
@KietaPhillips @speedhunters_dino @dougbunge While I agree it would have been a losing battle (incidentally this particular lawsuit DID fail), with so many different kits out there, to be fair I can understand why. It's his trademark and IP, and in particular when Shelby did give one company (Superformance) his official licensing, you can see why he might not like people using his names/trademarks for free.
@Hanma Let's not forget these cars are built for fun. Maybe that to him is more important than beating everyone else on track