Ford’s “Total Performance” racing program in the early
1960s was the first stone turned in the task of repurposing its
image to the youth market. The introduction of the Mustang increased
that exponentially, but even in 289 Hi-Po form, it was
no match for the Pontiac GTO or other muscle cars. Neither
was the 1966 Fairlane GT or subsequent 390 Mustang the
following year. But when the 428 Cobra Jet Mustang debuted
at Pomona for the NHRA Winternationals in 1968, that image
evolved from wholesome to fearsome!
Cobra Jet Mustangs downed all comers and took the
vaunted Super Stock Eliminator crown while introducing a new
weapon. By the next model year with the revolutionary shaker
hood on Cobra Jet-equipped Mach Is and the striking snake
adorning the sheet metal of the midsize Cobra, Ford’s image
makeover was complete. The demise of the muscle car era
didn’t signify the end of the Cobra Jet, as Ford continued the
performance reign with the 351 Cobra Jet.
The legacy left by Mustang, Cougar, Torino, Cyclone, and
Ranchero 428, 429, and 351 Cobra Jet-powered vehicles is
indelible. Mustang Monthly editor Rob Kinnan and muscle car
expert Diego Rosenberg bring this history back to life in an
all-encompassing book that is the first to specifically feature all
Cobra Jet cars, including the purpose-built drag cars of today!
Cobra Jet: The History of Ford’s Greatest High-Performance
Muscle Cars will hypnotize you as the first and complete history
of Ford’s most famous engines during the era’s peak.
• Ford Mustangs are among the most popular sports
cars in the world, with new models appearing every
year, appealing to all generations of sports car fans.
• The Cobra Jet Mustangs were dominant in their racing
classes in the late 1960s, creating new respect for
America’s favorite pony car.
• Mustang books are consistent best sellers.
About the Authors
Born in Ohio to a gearhead father, Rob Kinnan was into
cars, bikes, and all things mechanical from a young age.
Graduating from Colorado State University with a degree in
journalism and a passion for reading car magazines, Rob
secured his dream job at Hot Rod magazine. After 26 years
of automotive journalism, Rob has worked at a variety of
magazines, including holding the editor position at his first
love, Hot Rod, for seven years.
Ever since he was a 2-year-old playing with his dad’s
1967 Cougar, Diego Rosenberg has been a car enthusiast
of various marques from around the world. Proximity
to Carlisle and racetracks helped him develop a taste for
American performance cars of the 1960s, especially when
the muscle car hobby was gaining traction in the 1980s.