In 1993 the Los Angeles Times exposed a Carroll Shelby scheme to "Counterfeit" his own cars. With the price of an original 427 c. i. Cobra skyrocketing, Shelby had, by his own written declaration executed under penalty of perjury, caused the California Department of Motor Vehicles (the government agency responsible for titling vehicles and issuing operator permits) to utter forty-three "Duplicate Titles" for vehicles that did not officially exist in company records. A letter from AC Cars confirmed the fact that the chassis numbers Shelby had obtained titles for were never manufactured, at least by AC Cars. Only fifty-five 427 c. i. Cobras had been originally produced out of a block of serial numbers reserved for 100 vehicles. Shelby had taken advantage of a loophole in the California system that allowed one to obtain a duplicate title for a vehicle with only a written declaration, without the vehicle identification number appearing in the DMV's database or the declarant ever presenting an actual vehicle for inspection. Shelby later admitted that the chassis had been manufactured in 1991 and '92 by McCluskey Ltd, an engineering firm in Torrance, California, and were not authentic AC chassis.
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