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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 06-23-2017, 08:30 PM
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Default Which engine should I choose?

Hi All,

I am a new Club Cobra and this is my first post (so be gentle!).

I am currently doing some pre-purchase research and would value everyone's opinion. I am planning on building a cobra, ideally with an aluminium body/shell. I have included a photo that would represent my dream build (if I can get the photo upload working).

I realise this is not a new topic but can I get an opinion on which engine you would all recommend (I guess this is like asking how long is a piece of string and I am sure there will be many differing opinions). I am trying to decide between something like a Ford engine such as a 427 FE or go for something different like an LSA.

If I am honest the car will mainly be used for short trips and the occasional Ferrari embarrassing red light drag. I highly doubt it will do any track work so weight isn't a huge issue (eg big block vs small block).

Thanks in advance for your advice/thoughts.

Regards

Hugh
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Old 06-23-2017, 08:46 PM
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Welcome Hugh !

Yep, you'll get a lot of different ideas.

I'll let you know straight up, that FE's today are expensive to build !
There almost twics the cost and more, versus like Chevys.

But, I do prefer an FE, second a 385 series (Ford 460) third a Ford 351, bored/stroked to 427ci.

I'm going through the same decision. But I built mine back in 2000 with a 428FE. Ineed a new engine so because of cost, I'm thinking about a 460, bored and strokes to ?.....
Much cheaper and more power for the money.

I like having a FE in the car though, so I'll see.
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Old 06-23-2017, 09:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FUNFER2 View Post
Welcome Hugh !

Yep, you'll get a lot of different ideas.

I'll let you know straight up, that FE's today are expensive to build !
There almost twics the cost and more, versus like Chevys.

But, I do prefer an FE, second a 385 series (Ford 460) third a Ford 351, bored/stroked to 427ci.

I'm going through the same decision. But I built mine back in 2000 with a 428FE. Ineed a new engine so because of cost, I'm thinking about a 460, bored and strokes to ?.....
Much cheaper and more power for the money.

I like having a FE in the car though, so I'll see.
You do realize that the original poster is in Australia, and his choices are much limited.
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Old 06-24-2017, 12:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TassieCobra View Post
Hi All,

I am a new Club Cobra and this is my first post (so be gentle!).

I am currently doing some pre-purchase research and would value everyone's opinion. I am planning on building a cobra, ideally with an aluminium body/shell. I have included a photo that would represent my dream build (if I can get the photo upload working).

I realise this is not a new topic but can I get an opinion on which engine you would all recommend (I guess this is like asking how long is a piece of string and I am sure there will be many differing opinions). I am trying to decide between something like a Ford engine such as a 427 FE or go for something different like an LSA.

If I am honest the car will mainly be used for short trips and the occasional Ferrari embarrassing red light drag. I highly doubt it will do any track work so weight isn't a huge issue (eg big block vs small block).

Thanks in advance for your advice/thoughts.

Regards

Hugh
Welcome Hugh!

I have an LSA in my composite-bodied Pace 427SC and I could not be happier. It has a 21% overdrive kit and is putting down 520hp at the rear tyres.

Sure, it gets back to the old Ford versus Chevy argument in a Cobra, but let me tell you there are very few people who I am aware of that have opposed the fitment of the LSA in my car. Most everyone is totally supportive of the move. They cannot believe how something so light (1060kg) has so much power.

LSA's are light, a bargain for the price and everyone and his dog can tune them. They also fit into the Pace without a requirement for the chassis to be modified (if you went with a Coyote 5.0 for example).

I am happy with my choice and don't regret it one bit.

Cheers,
Sime
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Old 06-24-2017, 01:48 AM
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Hit the search button as this topic has been discussed many times over- You will find that a FE would never pass engineering for full registration in any state in Australia.
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Old 06-24-2017, 01:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paintwerks View Post
Welcome Hugh!

I am happy with my choice and don't regret it one bit.

Cheers,
Sime
Thanks Sime,

I have had a good look through your build log as it is fantastic and your car looks amazing. I appreciate your advice.

Regards

Hugh
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Old 06-24-2017, 02:18 AM
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Welcome Hugh !
I guess it really depends on what you want, a customised cobra or one that has an original look. If you're going down the aluminium body path, I suppose you might be looking at the latter. If that's the case Fe is the way to go, but to be honest, because we're in Aus, it's a choice that will be expensive and there are very few Fe experts here.
A 427 Windsor stroker is an alternative if you want to stick with a Ford engine and are looking for that magic number.
Having said that, I would seriously consider what paintwerks had to say. So many members are really happy with their chev engines and can offer you some really good advice if you go that path.
I have an LS3 in my daily driver and love it, that would be a great engine in a cobra. I just really enjoy the rawness and sound of the big block ford. That's what I like and I wouldn't go any other way for my cobra, being LHD and looking very much like an original one.
if you weren't building, what would you buy? Have a look around and when you see a cobra you wished you owned, then build one like that. Pace are looking good and there's a few engines out there that are better than Fes
Best of luck
Mike
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Last edited by Tengu; 06-24-2017 at 02:24 AM..
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Old 06-24-2017, 03:05 AM
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Thanks so much mike - great advice!
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Old 06-24-2017, 04:54 AM
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Welcome Hugh!

Please do tell us more about your choice in kit, and your plans.
Other than living vicariously through your search, it also might help me to understand how to best advise.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tenrocca View Post
Hit the search button as this topic has been discussed many times over- You will find that a FE would never pass engineering for full registration in any state in Australia.
My apologies but, I'm not so sure?
Pretty sure that there are examples. Yes You'll need deep pockets, but it's been done, at least as recent as even just couple years ago from memory.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tengu View Post
If that's the case Fe is the way to go, but to be honest, because we're in Aus, it's a choice that will be expensive and there are very few Fe experts here.
While you're right about the expense, I would be so quick to dismiss our local experts. You may be surprised to learn we have access to one of the world's leading FE gurus here in Aus. Paul Munro no less. Interstate for you tassie boys I suppose, but not too far from Melbourne, and that doesn't include a fair few others too.

In any case, going for an lsa is a prudent choice if you're looking for imho good bang for buck and to take advantage of a more modern engine platform.

Else modern Ford platform works, or as mentioned period correct small block Ford with a 289 shaped body is also feasible, and can tick the originality box if that's important to you.

It all depends on what you want vs how deep your pockets are.

Looking forward to hearing how you go with it all.
Best of luck.
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Old 06-24-2017, 05:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dimis View Post
Welcome Hugh!

Please do tell us more about your choice in kit, and your plans.
Other than living vicariously through your search, it also might help me to understand how to best advise.

Looking forward to hearing how you go with it all.
Best of luck.
Hi Dimis,

I am still deciding which kit I will go for. I am interested in the Pace Alumina and will mainly use it for short trips etc. Will not be a show car either but want it to look nice!

I have always loved the LSA (wife said no to me getting an HSV GTS) but do love the sound of a big block....

I also forgot to mention that I will be wanting an auto transmission (sorry!)

Thanks everyone for your thoughts
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Old 06-24-2017, 05:32 PM
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I met a man with no left leg, with an automatic in a Cobra, so I am aware that some people have special needs. I also met some people that couldn't learn to shift a manual if you used electro-shock therapy to train them.

That all said, unless you have a real need, consider a manual. One it belongs, and two it will have better resale value. If you have a real need, by all means do what you have to do.
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Old 06-24-2017, 07:53 PM
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Useful answer: get something that will pass emissions and noise compliance.
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Old 06-24-2017, 09:40 PM
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...can we start the conversation again about which is the best engine.

My personal fav is the Mercury racing DOHC 427... NA, 1000bhp... utterly illegal on the street but it will cuddle up with you at night and keep you safe..
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Old 06-25-2017, 12:30 AM
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LSA, or for a bit more coin, the more potent LS9.
Over 600 out of GM, 700hp wouldn't be too hard to make.
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Old 06-25-2017, 04:19 AM
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Hi Hugh,

Firstly, I see that – discounting your CC name ("Tassie...") - you’re from Victoria, so my advice is take some notice from what Mr. Dimis says.

Secondly, more advice is that you disregard ‘more power is better’. My personal advice is to consider a Tickford 302 Windsor (cost is ‘peanuts’ compared to other options of 427FEs and LS variants) as a contender. Power to weight of an AP chassis with a standard spec. 220kW Tickford is similar to a Mercedes AMG CLA45, performance of which is stunning enough ….why on earth would you want to double that figure unless you’re just after bragging rights?

Thirdly, further justification of using a Windsor variant is that the AC 289 Sports (RHD) sold in UK were powered by small block Ford motors in a 427 variant body. Authenticity box is ticked, if that matters to you. If not, disregard.

I should point out my bias….I have an Absolute Pace 289FIA with a 302W.

Fourthly (after you’ve worked through your preferences) ….welcome, and enjoy your Cobra build!

Cheers,
Glen
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Old 06-25-2017, 04:47 AM
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Quote:
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Hi High,

Glen
Thanks for your advice Glen. I am from Melbourne but plan on doing the build in tassie (hence my fairly unoriginal CC name!).

You do make a very valid point about getting carried away with the power numbers (particularly in such a light car).

I do love a big and loud v8 though!!

I must say it is so great to get so many different perspectives from the experienced cobra owners. These forums are so useful for newbies like me.

Regards

Hugh
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Old 06-25-2017, 04:49 AM
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Quote:
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I am still deciding which kit I will go for. I am interested in the Pace Alumina.....
Have you bee able to contact pace? I've heard they are very hard to get hold of recently.
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Old 06-25-2017, 04:57 AM
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Have you bee able to contact pace? I've heard they are very hard to get hold of recently.
I must confess that I have not been able to contact them yet but will keep trying. I have heard their product is very good quality and I am a patient man! I also do like a kit that has all components supplied.

I am not aware of any other aluminium shelled cobra kits in Australia (except importing a Kirkham which I imagine would cost $$$).
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Old 06-25-2017, 05:29 AM
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I am building a pace 427 and using a 6 LT LS engine and a 6 speed auto .motor is as stock as a rock but expecting it should outgun a camaira or a Hyundai i30 off the line :-).
the pace kit is a awesome bit of gear but hard to get a reply back from the factory ..
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Old 06-25-2017, 07:14 AM
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In addition to the cost and how you intend to use the car, you should consider resale. I don't know the market there but in the US a 427 Superformance will sell for about $20,000 more than a 351 or smaller engine in a SC, if you are building a slab side, that is a different story. In any case, you need to have a engine that will protect the value of your car.

You may think that you won't ever sell the car, but you will.
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