I finally did it — I got to go for a ride in a Cobra… and drive it! As I’ve been visiting my parents for the holidays, I took advantage of a new company in the Phoenix area that is renting Factory Five Roadsters and rented one for the day.
American Iron Rentals, which isn’t officially open for business yet, has two Factory Five cars available to rent. The one we got was a solid-rear-end gray car with black stripes and blacked out rollbars and sidepipes. This was nice because that (with chrome) is one of the color combinations I’d been considering. The car had a relatively tame stock 5.0 motor and a midshift T5 transmission.
The car was, frankly, everything I would’ve hoped mine would be. The Cobra is pure automotive sex… the sounds, the handling, the feel of the road. There’s nothing like it. There’s also nothing quite like the attention you get everywhere you go in it. While this is surely a “no-sh$#-sherlock” comment for those of you with a Cobra, intellectually knowing it and experiencing it is two very different things.
I can’t recommend American Iron strongly enough. The people there are car fanatics, know FFRs and cars and go out of their way to make a day in one of their cars just great.
One of the benefits of renting the car is I had a chance to re-evaluate some of the decisions I’d made. I think I’m going to go ahead and do a mid-shift having driven the car with the mid-shift. The position was great, the shift action was great. The car was really a dream to drive. I realized, too, the “finish” of the interior just doesn’t matter that much. The vinyl padded dash with not much extra bling really works. I’d been thinking wood, but I think simple is what I want. I definitely need a center console. I learned the car works great with heat (it was 40 degrees when we picked it up!). I’m happy I got the vintage gauges, I think they look better than the ones in the rental. I also am definitely glad I’m using my Schroth harnesses instead of the ones that come with the kit. They were a pain to get in and out of, and the push-button camlock on the Schroth setup just works far better day-to-day (having daily driven my old 911 with them for years).
Ah, such a great day. Thank-you to American Iron for a great day, and a great deal.