Fastest Ever? 2018 Mustang Cobra Jet

AutoInformed.com on 2018 Mustang Cobra JetTalk about “run what you brung.” Ford Performance has debuted the quickest drag racing Mustang ever, capable of covering a quarter-mile in the low- to mid-eight-second range with a top speed of more than 150 mph.

The 2018 Mustang Cobra Jet is a limited-edition of 68 turnkey race cars that honors the 50th anniversary of the original that dominated drag strips in 1968. The new Cobra Jet makes its public debut this weekend at the 2018 Woodward Dream Cruise.

“From the very first Mustang Cobra Jets dominating the 1968 NHRA Winternationals to our modern-day racers, the Ford Performance Parts team continues to build on Cobra Jet’s success at the track over five decades,” said Eric Cin, global director, Ford Performance Parts. “This has inspired generations of Mustang fans to create their own performance machines for the street.”

Well not exactly for the street on this one. It has no VIN number and will have to be trailered to a drag strip.

The Cobra Jet is powered by a 5.2-liter version of Fo5.0-liter V8, strengthened and outfitted with a 3.0-liter Whipple supercharger. The engine sends power to the ground through a 9-inch solid rear axle, two-way coil-over shocks with adjustable ride height and a low-drag disc brake system from Strange Engineering as well as a four-link rear suspension with antiroll and panhard bars. No horsepower or curb weight numbers were divulged. The car is tire limited. Time will be dependent on the skill of the driver without electronic help to roll into the throttle without sending the back end sideways.

Additional factory-provided racing performance upgrades include an NHRA-certified safety roll cage, FIA-certified seats and anniversary-badged racing wheels.

The new Mustang Cobra Jet is available in either Race Red or Oxford White and can come with exclusive 50th Anniversary graphics and badging. Customers can order now at an MSRP of $130,000. Production is limited to 68 cars, in honor of Cobra Jet’s 1968 debut.

Cobrajet History

The Cobra Jet has a long history of winning and setting records that dates to its debut race weekend, where it commanded NHRA Super Stock at the 1968 Winternationals in Pomona, Calif. Since then, its engine formula has powered Ford Mustang, Mercury Cougar, Ford Fairlane, Ford Torino and other vehicles. Credit for this goes to legendary East Coast Ford dealer Bob Tasca, grandfather of current Motorcraft/Quick Lane Mustang NHRA Funny Car driver Bob Tasca III and the man who allegedly coined the phrase “Win on Sunday, sell on Monday.”

After its display at Mustang Alley as part of the Woodward Dream Cruise, the 50th Anniversary Mustang Cobra Jet will travel the following weekend to Norwalk, Ohio, for the 50th Anniversary Ford Performance Cobra Jet Reunion at Summit Motorsports Park – the largest gathering of Cobra Jets in history. More than 150 vehicles dating back to 1968 are expected to attend.

Mustang Cobra Jet timeline

1968Original FE 428-cubic-inch V8-powered Cobra Jet

  • Ford produces 50 lightweight Mustangs to hold the 335-horsepower engine; six are shipped to Holman Moody and Bill Stroppe to be prepared for NHRA competition
  • Al Joniec pilots one of the six to Cobra Jet’s first victory

2008Rebirth of factory Mustang Cobra Jet, M-FR500-CJ, 40 years later

  • Powered by a supercharged 5.4-liter dual-overhead-cam V8, this drag racing renaissance was the first Stock Eliminator car to dip into the eight-second zone at an NHRA National Event
  • Unlike the original, the 50 produced this time around do not feature VINs, so they are not street legal
  • John Calvert drives a Cobra Jet featuring Joniec tribute paint scheme to victory at NHRA Winternationals on 41st anniversary of its original win

2009-16 – M-FR500-CJ

  • 250 additional cars are produced with dozens of domestic drag racing records, victories and championships achieved across NHRA, IHRA, NMCA and NMRA
  • Drivers range from experienced veterans to young drag racing stars in the making
  • Through half a century, Mustang Cobra Jet orders are still being placed at local Ford dealerships

About Kenneth Zino

Ken Zino is an auto industry veteran with global experience in print, broadcast and electronic media. He has auto testing, marketing, public relations and communications expertise garnered while working in Asia, Europe and the U.S.
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