Ford V8 Power, 5-Speed, European Style, American Performance.
1959 AC Aceca with Ford V8
White with Red Leather
In 1953, AC Cars introduced their Ace roadster, and its closed variant, the Aceca. Available with a variety of six-cylinder engines, these cars had light, tubular chassis beneath beautiful, hand-formed aluminum bodies. When AC’s sources of six-cylinder engines dried up in 1962 or so, Carroll Shelby approached the company with an idea of inserting 260cid Ford V8’s, creating what would become the Cobra. Available only as an open car, the Cobra became one of the most iconic and often replicated cars of all time. Other than a handful of highly developed big block competition cars (“Daytonas”), there were no closed Cobras produced, making this car an interesting “what if”.
Early in this car’s life, in 1963, it was fitted with a 260cid Ford engine at a Ford dealer. Currently, the car has a 302cid Ford V8 installed, along with a 5-speed gearbox. The car also has disc brakes. From 1970 to 2002, the car was owned by the co-founder of the United States AC Club, and the car was completely restored about 5000 miles ago. The restoration was completed in 2004, and included paint, chrome, upholstery, new flywheel and clutch, clutch and brake hydraulics and lines, headers, stainless exhaust, conversion to rack and pinion steering, u-joints, king pins, rebuilt Spax shocks front and rear, new differential seals and mounts, fuel tank and lines, wiring harness, gauges, wiper motors, new window seals, new heavy duty 15x5 chrome wire wheels, installation of Ford-based T5 five-speed all syncromesh transmission, and engine rebuild with all new rods and bearings.
Consequently, the car is in very nice condition. The car has very nice paint over a very good body. The paint is in very good condition, with only a handful of chips, which have been touched up. The chrome is excellent on the bumpers, door handles, wheels and trim, other than the side window surrounds, which are showing some pitting. The car appears to be externally stock, aside from the wider wheels, making this car something of a sleeper.
The interior has been completely restored, and retains some neat original detailing such as the green transparent sun visors. The leather and carpets were both replaced with high quality materials and are excellent. The instruments were also replaced, and the headliner is high quality wool in excellent shape. The steering wheel is a nice three spoke affair and has a nice thick leather rim. The car has good ergonomics, particularly for an engine swap, and unlike some conversion, there is still space for the driver and the driver’s legs in this car.
The engine compartment shows that this is a tidy installation, and the engine is clean. It is a very impressive sight, complete with Cobra valve covers and air cleaner. There is a large aluminum radiator with electric fan to ensure proper cooling. The rear compartment is usefully shaped and sized, and is accessed through a large hatch, making this a great car to use for touring. The car runs well and is extremely quick. The disc brakes stop the car effectively, and the gearbox is very good as well. The car has been updated with rack and pinion steering, and the rack was installed in front of the structural member to which the front spring attaches, which necessitated inverting the spindles to mount the tie rods. Consequently, the car’s steering geometry is non-original, which can be rectified by repositioning the steering rack and righting the spindles.
This is an excellent opportunity to acquire a sort of Cobra coupe that never was. The car is very well documented, with lots of invoices from the restoration, as well as old pictures of the car from the restoration, some photos from the 1960’s and 70’s, and operating manual. It is in very fine shape, is very fast, and represents excellent value.
The above vehicle information is complete and accurate to the best of our knowledge at the time it is posted to this website. Corrections or additional information is always appreciated. All advertised prices exclude government fees and taxes, any finance charges, any dealer document preparation charge, and any emission testing charge. Vehicles are subject to prior sale. All advertised to be true but not guaranteed. We assume no liability for errors or omissions.
Fantasy Junction • 510-653-7555 • 1145 Park Ave, Emeryville, CA 94608