The ears of muscle car fans will probably perk up when they hear that a rare 429 Cobra Jet, 1970 Ford Torino was pulled from a shed. That’s exactly what happened to Mark Watkins when a buddy told him, “You know, John never did get rid of his old Torino. Brenda, his widow, still has it. Maybe she would sell it?”
In a related report by the Inquisitr, a classic 1964 Shelby Cobra discovered in a barn could be the next million dollar Shelby.
Finding this rare car in the shed was not an accidental find, per se. Watkins recalls that his buddy, Doug Ward, used to street race with his 429 Cobra Jet, 1970 Ford Torino.
“They were so long on power,” Mark says. “I was a Chevy guy, but I have to admit that was the toughest engine. It went through three or four high school kids and never got overhauled and didn’t need it. It took it. He didn’t know this thing had that kind of power. But did it ever make history. This thing had a name to it, the Torino. It drove around town and everybody looked at it. It was kind of like a legend in its own time.”
The original owner bought the muscle car at a used car lot in Downing, Missouri, for $1,300 back in the day. To put this purchase price in perspective, a fully restored 429 Cobra Jet/four-speed Torino can be bought in New York for $55,000, according to Classic Cars.
Long story short, the original car bought by Ward ended up in the junkyard after he sold it to someone else who ended up in a car crash. One of Mark Watkin’s other racing friends, John Wall, ended up buying a souped up version: a “429 Super Cobra Jet, Drag Pack, shaker hoodscoop for ram air, rear window slats, four-speed, and a 4.30:1 Detroit Locker rearend.” Unfortunately, Wall also was involved in an auto accident that killed him, although the crash apparently had nothing to do with the Ford Torino or speeding.
Regardless, Wall’s widow, Brenda, ended up sticking the rare vehicle into storage behind the back of her house. It was not until Mark retired that he had the rare 429 Cobra Jet, 1970 Ford Torino pulled from the shed in order to see what condition it was in.
Rare 429 Cobra Jet, 1970 Ford Torino Pulled From Shed, But What Is The Car’s Story?
1970 Ford Torino Cobra 3
1970 Ford Torino Cobra 2
1970 Ford Torino Cobra 1
Unfortunately, sitting in an old metal shed had done its work on the car over time, even if it was not in any accident. The 1970 Ford Torino also happens to belong to Ashley, John Wall’s daughter, and she hasn’t made up her mind on selling her father’s old car.
“She didn’t know if she could sell,” says Mark. “She really didn’t want to let it go. I told her I understood and said I’d like to talk to Jerry Heasley and take some pictures, ’cause he’s got a Rare Finds column in Muscle Car Review. I said if nothing else, John would have really gotten a kick out of seeing his old car in a magazine.”
Mark hopes that one day the rare 429 Cobra Jet, 1970 Ford Torino pulled from a shed may see its former glory, but in the meantime it sits, waiting, as time passes faster than any speeding car.
[Images via Hot Rod]