Classic Classified:1964 Shelby Cobra 289
From: Hemmings Motor News
Date: December 1983
Price then: $39,500 ($94,900 adjusted for inflation, about the cost of a new 2016 BMW M5 today)
Price now: $815,000 – $1,200,000
Approximate dollar difference: $1,105,100 (assuming No. 1 condition)
Annual rate of return: 7.9%
AC Cobra: 289-ci 1964 CSX2425, four Webers, Nassau exhaust, oil cooler, front/rear sway bars, roll bar, blue/black leather, excellent $39,500.
It is hard to dispute that the Cobra became one of the most iconic American sports cars ever due to its tremendous racing success, and it is always a special occasion when a real one surfaces for sale. With Cobras of any type or condition selling for close to or above one million dollars, it’s hard to imagine a time when one could be had for under $40,000. That was still a considerable amount of money in 1983, but given today’s values there was almost no way to go wrong if you bought a Cobra back then and kept it for a while.