If it wasn’t bright red and it wasn’t wearing a couple of little badges and the giveaway hoodscoop, this would be a basic-model Ford Torino, complete with body-colored wheels and Ford’s poverty caps slapped on them. What adornment? Musclecars of the 1964-72 variety came in two forms: loud and proud, or quiet and violent. You either knew or you didn’t, there was no real in-between on the deal. Many wanted their cars to announce to the world that they were the badass on the block, with callouts, stripes, scoops, spats, spoilers and enough bark to freak out the junkyard dog. This Torino follows the other path.
You know the type: the taxicab that hits completely different when the engine is fired off. Big, broad seats. Plain body. Maybe one detail or two that those in the know would pick up on but for any regular Joe Blow, it’s just another cheap hardtop that some young gun thinks is hot stuff. Except that kid knew his stuff. And buddy, that car is hot stuff, hotter than you’d ever know. We have the benefit of knowing the score for half a century on cars like these. Back in the day, they were either bought, beat and banished to the scrapyard or they were nowhere near as hot as this Cobra is. You’ll find 302-powered Torinos all day long.
Park this next to a 1969 Road Runner A12, or a 1969 Yenko Chevelle, and it becomes clear: Ford was hiding in plain sight with this car. It had the brawn, but it also had the brains to keep it’s mouth shut.