Superformance's Cobra replica registers top speed record of 201 mph

Article by Christian A., on June 24, 2017

As prices of the original Shelby Cobra have skyrocketed into astronomical proportions, there are firms like Superformance that serve replicas to consumers who demand the same levels of performance at a budget-friendly cost. And now the recent Superformance MkIII can provide drivers more speed compared to the original model, including the one unit that snagged the title of the world's fastest road-ready Cobra after clocking in an impressive 201.1 miles per hour (324 km per hour) at the Mojave Air and Space Port. While we are used to premium modern supercars regularly making speed records left and right, it is another thing for the classic roadster to travel at near impossible speeds.

Owner Ted Taormina christened his Superformance MkIII the "Italian Job". It’s so fitting then that the vehicle donned red, white and green stripes to pay tribute to the country's flag. When Ted, the founder of Taormina Imports, is not busy producing customer cars, he is driving his own monstrous vehicles. Superformance patrons frequently personalize their vehicles, and Taormina's MkIII has also undergone a lot of modifications.

For the heart of the vehicle, there's a Shelby Engine's 427 FE V8 that produces around 690hp (515 kW) and 710 lb-ft (963 Newton-meters) of torque. Then it comes with front spoiler and canards for added downforce and a diffuser to suck the car down at the back for enhanced aerodynamics. Aluminum panels seal the lower side of the roadster in a bid to boost stability.

A modified tune for the shocks and springs reduce force and after motion upon acceleration of the MkIII. Taormina required months of preparation for setting his roadster to such impressive speeds. In earlier records, the Cobra hit around 169 mph (272 kph) and 190.1 mph (306 kph). He eclipsed the previous speed record for a road-legal Cobra by clocking in 201 mph.

The previous speed record was in 1967 when Dick Smith maneuvered his Shelby 427 S/C bearing the CSX3035 serial number to a superb 198 mph (319 kph) in the Daytona International Speedway. Taormina revealed that the "Italian Job" was supposed to be equipped with a Ferrari V12 engine, but it ended up acquiring a V8 due to the fact that his engine builder had a patron withdraw a deal for a 700hp 427 engine. The engine builder suggested that they will fit the roadster with the V8 engine, and the rest is history.

But Superformance not only offers replicas of the Cobra, as their lineups also consist of recreations of the Shelby Daytona Coupe, an authentic Ford GT40 and Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport. These machines are quite splendid when it comes to performance and aesthetics. It's hard to imagine such vintage builds to go so fast, and now the Superformance MkIII has proven to everybody that vintage roadsters cannot be underestimated.

Press Release


Ted Taormina, owner of the “Italian Job” Superformance MkIII breaks the Cobra speed record, making it the fastest Cobra ever, with a speed of 201.1 mph at the Mojave Air and Space Port.

Mojave, California (June, 2017) – Superformance, the leading manufacturer of 1960s era continuation sports cars, now has a new claim to fame, as manufacturer of the world’s fastest road going Cobra.

The feat was accomplished by Ted Taormina, owner of the San Carlos, California based exotic car service specialist, Taormina Imports, who drove his “Italian Job” Superformance MkIII to a record speed of 201.1 MPH at the Mojave Air and Space Port. With months of planning and preparation leading up to this speed run, Taormina took to the tarmac at the Mojave Air and Space Port for his world record run. After two respectable passes at 169.0 mph and 190.1 mph, Taormina broke the record with a top speed of 201.1 mph.

The record was previously held by Cobra racing legend Dick Smith, who achieved a top-speed of 198 MPH in his 427 S/C CSX3035 Cobra at Daytona in 1967. Smith’s record had stood for an incredible 50 years.

“What Ted has accomplished in our Superfomance MkIII is incredible,” said Superformance CEO Lance Stander. “Ted has been an adrenaline junky his whole life and has done speed runs in a number of exotic sports cars. To accomplish this in one of our road going Superformance Cobra’s is especially significant.”

Taormina’s Superformance MkIII with an Italian inspired paint scheme is equipped with a number of modifications and is specially prepared to perform at extreme speeds. The “Italian Job” Cobra runs an OEM style Shelby Engines 427 FE engine that generates over 690 horsepower and 710 ft-lb of torque.

Taormina added an under-car spoiler in the front for downforce, and a diffuser in the rear to maintain stability. The vehicle’s entire underside was sealed with aluminum panels to provide additional stability at high speeds. Taormina also added front bumper canards to provide additional downforce, and a custom spring and shock configuration to minimize fore and aft motion. Even with these performance mods, Taormina’s MkIII Cobra maintains a street-legal classification and can be daily driven.

For more information on Superformance, the MkIII and its full line of continuation vehicles, visit or call (800)297-6253. For more information on Ted Taormina and his “Italian Job” Cobra, visit

Superformance is a manufacturer of complete continuation and reproductions of 1960s race and street cars and was one of the first players in the industry. We have earned our reputation with our attention to detail, quality craftsmanship, fit and finish and customer service. Our products are endorsed by our licensees from trade mark holders which adds authenticity and increases the resale value. Superformance products are manufactured using all new parts which are factory assembled to ensure continuity and consistency in construction. All GT40 sales are recorded in the Shelby World registry. Superformance has a dedicated independent dealer network who together have distributed over 4000 units worldwide.

Taormina Imports is an exotic car service specialist for Superformance vehicles, Lamborghinis, Ferrari’s and other exotic and classic cars. Taormina Imports offers full-service preventative maintenance and auto repair center that performs high quality guaranteed auto repairs. Founded in 2010, Taormina brings 25 years of knowledge and experience to the San Francisco Bay area.

Source: Superformance via Photo credit: Matthieu Chollet Photography

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Topics: sports car, record



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