The Shelby Cobra is probably one of the most recognizable automobiles ever created. Its shape, sound and persona are legendary, as are the vast amount of replicas that have been produced over the years. Factory Five Racing is one such replica company, as they’ve been pumping out beautiful recreations of these cars since 1995. Over the last few years though FFR has been tied up in a court battle with Carroll Shelby, due to the fact that Shelby felt that he had the right to trademark the iconic shape of the 427 S/C Cobra. Keep in mind now the original Cobra was base off an AC, a car for which Shelby had nothing to do with.
Now the dust has settled and thankfully FFF has come out victorious. A press blurb from their website states:
On October 13th, 2010, the court denied his application and our opposition was successful. We felt that if he were to get a trademark on the Cobra shape, his PR machine would use that to make the legitimate replica industry look bad. Our position was that a Shelby trademark would have ignored the factual history of the car, which started life as an AC car with a Ford engine in it, as well as completely discounting the huge contributions that replica guys have made to the car’s continuing legacy since the 1970’s. We have never denied Shelby’s part in history, but he has enjoyed huge popularity, in-part, due to replicas.
We’d like to congratulate Factory Five Racing in their victory, and we look forward to seeing more of their hot rods roam the streets in the future.