One-of-a-kind Shelby Cobra to sell in Arizona

The one-of-a-kind 1964 Shelby Cobra 427 Prototype s/n CSX 2196 - nicknamed "The Flip-top" for its unique clam shell design - will hit the sales block at RM's Automobiles of Arizona event at the Biltmore Resort and Spa in Phoenix, on January 22.

The one-of-a-kind 1964 Shelby Cobra 427 Prototype s/n CSX 2196
The one-of-a-kind 1964 Shelby Cobra 427 Prototype s/n CSX 2196

Its design, build, development and racing were spearheaded by legendary racing driver Ken Miles. After months of testing and modifications, the 2196 became the only prototype produced for the famed 427 Cobras that followed. It went on to be raced at Riverside, Sebring and Nassau.

Over the years, the 2196 has competed in many of the world's historic races including Laguna Seca, Monterey Historics and Goodwood Festival of Speed.

Today, the well-documented Flip-top sports its original livery of Guardman Blue with white stripes and black interior, and is unquestionably one of the most desirable Shelby Cobras ever built.

The 2196 became the only prototype produced for the famed 427 Cobras that followed
The 427 Prototype: demonstrating why they nicknamed it "the Flip-top"

If you are a classic car collector eager to get your hands on a real vintage Cobra, you can also look to the 39th Annual Barrett-Jackson Collector Car Auction in Scottsdale on January 18-24, 2010.

Two historic Shelby's will auction: an original 289 Shelby Cobra, CSX2091 and the first production 1966 Shelby GT350, sold at no reserve.

Each of the above cars are sure to make a big impression on the auction block - and recent months have already seen some impressive Shelby Cobra sales.

Earlier this week, on Monday December 7, a rare and quite exceptional 1963 AC Cobra 289 MkI Roadster netted £232,500 at Bonhams' Important Collectors' Motor Cars & Fine Automobilia auction.

And, in October, the 1965 Shelby Cobra Roadster was the biggest star at Barrett-Jackson's car sale in Las Vegas.

According to Barrett-Jackson, it was the first time the CSX2568 had been shown to the public in about 40 years and the first time it has been offered for sale since 1968.

Boasting a princess blue exterior and 289 engine, it sold for a hefty $440,000.

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