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The new Cobra bares its fangs in "XXX:State of the Union"


Matt Holliday

Matt Holliday was one of Crutchfield's ace car enthusiasts for several years. He brought a lifetime of knowledge and experience to our team. He has since left the company to join the family business and pursue other interests.

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Ford's Cobra concept car stars in "XXX: State of the Union"

Following up on the blockbuster movie XXX, Sony will once again explode onto the screen with XXX: State of the Union. Just like in the first movie, the actors in the latest installment of the XXX story will share the screen with some advanced gadgets and heavily modified vehicles.

Returning to the screen is the Pontiac GTO that was featured in the first XXX film. But this time, it's not the only ride with a few tricks up its sleeve. Joining the action are a slew of cars and trucks, including a monster Ford F-150, built to take on anything at any time. But the real hero of the film (besides XXX, himself) is Ford's Cobra concept vehicle. A sleek, powerful roadster, the latest car to wear the Cobra badge is a perfect fit for the current XXX. It has just as much attitude as the movie's other star, Ice Cube, and thanks to Sony, it can produce slamming beats, too.

The latest Cobra borrows a few lines from the classic models.

The Cobra fits right into the theme of cutting edge technology and tough image associated with XXX's character. Both are gritty, raw, and bigger than life, and both are able to tackle whatever task is thrown at them.

This sleek profile lets you know it's fast.

To have a scene-stealing movie car, you need to start with a strong base. The movie-version of the Cobra could easily have packed a powerful punch on it's own, even without the usual Hollywood makeover, thanks to its 600 horsepower and 500 foot-pounds of torque. The all-aluminum V-10 engine has a 10,000 RPM redline and is matched to a heavy-duty six-speed transmission. Its aluminum skin is stretched tight over the light-weight body, making the car look like it is ready to be fired out of a cannon.

The tight body panels and smooth lines make it seem as if the car is traveling 200 miles per hour, even when sitting still.

Though the actual car doesn't pack the whopping numbers that it does in the movie, it's still an impressive vehicle. It took 24 people just 45 days to piece together a vehicle that was worthy of the Cobra name and hot enough to carry around a secret agent. The actual car features a tried-and-true Ford 5.0 motor, hopped up to 345 horsepower, topped with an Edelbrock carburetor and mated to a TCI C4 transmission. All the power is pushed through a live rear axle with 3.73 gears, and hits the ground through B.F. Goodrich tires. This easily translates into some ferocious speed, as the Cobra sports a full fiberglass body and weighs in at a paltry 2,600 pounds.

Keeping XXX and any passenger firmly in the car are a set of Sparco racing seats and harnesses. A rollcage has been integrated into the chassis for added safety.

Sparco seats and harnesses keep passengers strapped in tight.

The engine isn't the only thing that screams on this car. Since this is a Sony production, you know the sound system has to wail just as hard as the rest of the car. A mix of Sony's newest and most popular gear gives the Cobra a little extra kick and gives XXX something to listen to other than the string of explosions that seem to follow him.

The Sony CDX-R5715X sits on the passenger's side of the dash.

It's easy to keeep tabs on your music with the big faceplate...
even when the Synchro-Flip is engaged to reveal the CD slot.

Sony started with a blank slate, since the original Cobra concept vehicle didn't have any stereo system at all. For the XXX car, Sony added it's new Sony CDX-R5715X CD/MP3 receiver, which has as many features as any decked-out spy car, and a few gadgets of its own. The headunit sports Sony's Synchro-Flip detachable faceplate, which hides the CD slot while still displaying the full screen.

A single Sony P5 sub delivers the boom inside the Cobra.

While XXX is blasting at foes outside the car, the Sony Xplod P5 sub is firing booming bass inside. The single sub is mounted in between the driver and passenger for in-your-face sound and dramatic visual effect. The rest of the sounds are supplied by a set of Sony's XS-D130SI component speakers, mounted in the dash, and an XM-2100GTX amp.

Add one secret agent, plenty of speed, and you've got a recipe for a hot movie car.

The Cobra's retro-styling coupled with its new-school sound and engineering give XXX an edge when facing any obstacle, whether it be cruising at 200-plus miles an hour or hitting the low notes on the latest Ice Cube track. A secret agent saving the world couldn't have it any sweeter.

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