Unique Motorcars is a family owned business, operated by Alan and Maurice Weaver (brothers) and their Mother, Jean Weaver. The Weaver family's experience with Kit Cars began in Phoenix, Arizona in 1976. At that time we were operating as Antique Car Restoration Center. Our primary business was the complete restoration of classic and special interest automobiles. Most of the cars being restored were owned by collectors and museums. We were the exclusive restoration company for the Grand Old Cars Museum in Scottsdale, Arizona. Grand Old Cars Museum was the world's largest collection of convertible automobiles under one roof. We also restored numerous Mustang convertibles for A & G Classic Cars. We continued to restore cars until 1979.
We assembled Intermeccanica Porsche Speedster Replicas and Auburn Boat tail Speedsters until we purchased Unique Motorcars in 1979. This is when we started to manufacture Cobra* Replicas. It's interesting to note that Unique Motorcars was founded by Bill Close, who leased space from us and began his production in our shop. We were instrumental in developing the body molds and frame fixtures for him, and we bought the business from Mr. Close In 1979. After buying his company, we completely redesigned the body molds, eliminated excessive mold seams, and re-tooled for increased production quality. The frame was also improved and lightened.
In 1981 Unique Motorcars made, what has turned out to be, the most important business decision since our inception. We relocated the manufacturing plant to Gadsden, Alabama. The decreased cost of living and business overhead has allowed us to maintain higher quality and still stay competitive in an ever increasingly competitive market. Gadsden is the Weaver family's home town and is conveniently located just 60 miles north of Birmingham, Alabama on Interstate 59.
Since moving to Gadsden, we have continued to improve the quality of our products and have tooled up to reproduce a number of parts which were no longer available, or became cost prohibitive such as:
- "Le Mans" quick fill gas cap
- Sliding Plexiglas side curtains
- Wind wings and brackets
- Sun visors and brackets
- Oil and brake cooler grilles
- Improved Cast stainless steel bumper overriders
- Original Spec. Steering Column
In April of 1989, we completely re-tooled our body. We spent more than six weeks preparing the 'Plug' for our new '427' body mold. The result of this effort is a body that requires a minimal amount of prep time prior to painting. Our paint man can prep and paint a body (with stripes), in as little as five eight-hour shifts. This body is also greatly improved in overall appearance when compared to other replicas on the market. We used hundreds of photos of original Cobras'* in reshaping our 427 body. All wheel openings are now uniform. The nose was corrected to the original design. Also, we balanced the body shapes from side-to-side so that the body shape is symmetrical. We have always felt that our body was structurally superior to our competitors, but, now we can truthfully say it is also aesthetically superior.
In 1991, Unique Motorcars decided to to include the 289 model in it's product line of the Cobra* roadster. We contracted with 'World of Fiberglass’ in Phoenix, Arizona, to take our 427 Body and restructure it into the most accurate replica of the 289 Competition Body. The first Unique Motorcars 289 Replica made it's debut at the AHA Knott's Berry Farm Kit Car Show In May of 1991. There were over 30 'COBRA* Replicas' on hand along with a cross section of the Kit Car Industry. Our 289 Replica was selected 'BEST of SHOW' by Steve Temple, Editor of Petersen's 'Kit Car' Magazine.
The 289 Replica also caught the eye of 'Car and Driver' Editor, Patrick Bedard. While researching a feature article on the Cobra replica industry for 'Car and Driver, Mr. Bedard visited Unique Motorcars' factory. He was so impressed by the product and the company that he featured the 289 Replica In the December 1991 Issue. To represent the entire Cobra* replica industry, Mr. Bedard also selected UNIQUE MOTORCARS 427 Replica to grace the Cover of the same issue. This represents the widest exposure to date of a Cobra* replica.
In July 1993, due to the demand for the 289 Replica and a steady increase in orders, Unique Motorcars expanded its facility by adding almost 4,000 square feet of warehouse space. This new space allows UNIQUE MOTORCARS to double its assembly area and increase production by fifty percent. With increased competition (and shady business practices forcing some Cobra* replica manufacturers to close their doors) UNIQUE MOTORCARS sees this expansion as a sign of our dedication to quality and customer support.
We invite you to visit our factory and see for yourself why Unique Motorcars has twice been recognized by industry leaders as the 'BEST COBRA* REPLICA' ever available.
* Cobra is a trademark of FORD MOTOR COMPANY. Neither 33autos nor UNIQUE MOTORCARS' products have any connection with Ford.'