The E.R.A. 289FIA

Choosing a replica from the myriad of kit car companies can be daunting - especially since each company seems to offer a different package.  Compare our body, engineering, and level of support with others.  We figure, if you know the facts, everbody wins!

Racing History repeats itself, ONLY BETTER!

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"Cobra", "Shelby", and "Ford" are registered trademarks.  E.R.A. is in no way connected to these or any other rights involving the original Ford or Shelby Cobra.

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Era Replica Automobiles makes the most authentic 289 kit, FIA kit, 289FIA kit, and replica of the 289FIA

How does the FIA differ
from the 427?
Nose to noseEra Replica Automobiles makes the most authentic 289 kit, FIA kit, 289FIA kit, and replica of the 289FIA
There's lots more below!
Street car
Era Replica Automobiles manufactures a 427 roadster kit, 289FIA kit, and replica of the 289 street car

Now E.R.A. brings you an
affordable, STREETABLE alternative to the original race car.

The E.R.A. 289FIA

The car at the left has full (optional) street equipment: Street dash, seats, undercar exhaust and bumpers.  Of course, the competition car shown at the top is also available.

Index- Models - Body Structure - Chassis - Suspension - Drivetrain - Spec's -Kit Details - Options -Turnkey cars - History -Image Gallery - Links

Why an E.R.A. 289FIA?

Our version of the small block was born out of pressure from owners of our 427. They were having a great time at the track - until it came time to rebuild the 427 engine.   BIG money.

"Build us a small block car!  Please!" they said.

New Hampshire International Speedway

The E.R.A. 289FIA gives you the best of both worlds: a visually faithful reproduction where you can see. Improved where you can't. The chassis is strengthened over the original design - and stiffened to reduce body shake, an important factor in an open car. The special E.R.A. suspension works with the stiffer chassis to produce a combination of excellent handling and quality ride not found in any other roadster reproduction, or for that matter, any original. We also use a unique body structure , engineered to create a long-lifed body free of stress cracks and distortion.

Buying any replica involves a considerable commitmentof money and time. Our goal is to protect your investment, as well as our reputation. The result: our standard kit has almost every part either hinged, latched, or fit before it leaves the E.R.A. factory.  It's difficult to assemble this kit wrong!

E.R.A. 289FIA is not available in a stripped down version that will probably never be finished properly.  Our "Standard Assembly" is the most comprehensive basic kitoffered by anybody. The reason for this is simple. . We took the time to design and manufacture the best roadster replica available and we wanted it to stay that way .  And, if you don't want to spend the time to find and/or rebuild parts, we stock nearly everything that you need to finish your kit.

By the way, our 427 or FIA cars have been voted the "Best Cobra Replica " at the annual S.A.A.C meet for fifteen of the last sixteen years .  And we think the 289FIA is better!

Inconsistency dilutes the value of other kits no matter how well they were built by the customer. In fact, other marques have been falsely advertised and sold as E.R.A.'s because of this. Our cars have achieved a reputation of uniform high quality, ensuring consistent demand and the highest market value of any replica. The E.R.A. 289FIA may even appreciate with time, although you won't think about that much.  

You'll be having too much fun driving!

Index - Models - Body Structure - Chassis - Suspension - Drivetrain - Spec's
Kit Details -Options -Turnkey cars
- History - Links

289 kit, 289 roadster kit, 289FIA

hood scoopTHE LOOK!

The E.R.A. 289FIA is a visual clone of the original 289 race car. Our body shape is indistinguishable from the original down to the smallest details. We are also faithful in the engine compartment and trunk areas.  By lengthening the footboxes only, we have been able to increase the interior room without compromising esthetic accuracy

The 289FIA is available in two basic styles: The standard competition version (shown at the top) has jack pads, special instrument layout, forward braced roll bar , and racing bucket seats in a bare interior.  

A street version (at the right)is also available, with real bumpers and complete interior like the 289 street car. All bodies have the FIA flares, however. We don't offer a "slab side" version.

If desired, any standard configuration can be changed to suit your tasted with various options, as many owners of original roadsters have done.

Small wire wheel link

This car has the optional grill and a complete under-car exhaust, and is without a hood scoop. Reasonably quiet!

E.R.A. also builds a variation on the basic 289FIA. The E.R.A. 289/USRRC is the 289 as raced in the USRRC series,sponsored by the SCCA , with only a small windscreen and dimple-less trunk.  

Want more visual details?

Thumbnail USRRC
Image Gallery

Index - Image Gallery -Models - Body Structure - Chassis - Suspension - Drivetrain - Spec's
Kit Details -Options -Turnkey cars - History - Links


E.R.A.s unique integration of our body, interior panels and supporting frame creates a structure that is superior to other kits. On the road, the E.R.A. 289FIA is rock-solid, without rattles, drumming, or shakes. Other manufacturers bond the inner panels, hinge and latch supports directly to the backside of the outer body. On the E.R.A. 289FIA , the outer body is just that - the outer shell of the car. It carries no supporting loads and yet is the most rigid in the business!  

Small Body Construction Pic

More Details...

And you will NEVER get a stress crack in an ERA body!.

Our Fiberglass footboxes are longer than the original car for more leg room

than any standard wheelbase roadster replica. They attach directly to the tubular steel frame extensions, as original. The bulkhead behind the seats (with removable access panels) and side interior panels are aluminum and attached to the frame as original. The aluminum tunnel is removable for servicing the transmission and clutch, fastening to the floor as the original did.

Unlike most other kits that use a single fiberglass interior tub, the E.R.A. 289FIA has aluminum floors, interior side panels and rear bulkhead, just like the original car .  This is more work for us, but leaves you with less weight, more efficiency and better access.  Our tunnel is aluminum, and removable for servicing the clutch, driveshaft and transmission.  Just like a real car!

When you get the optional street exterior package, chrome plated steel bumpers are mounted so that loads are sent directly to the main chassis rails. They actually work much better than the original ones.

Our custom aluminum radiator (with electric fan) is the largest in the business and fully shrouded in aluminum. Provisions for mounting the optional oil cooler are integrated into the design.

The driver and passenger footboxes get fresh air vents. All hoses, valves and controls are included.

Models - Body Structure - Chassis - Suspension - Drivetrain - Spec's -Kit Details -Options -Turnkey cars - History - Links


The original 289 chassis, dating from the early 1950s, used 3" round tubes on a very narrow-base. The results, while acceptable on smooth English roads, left a lot to be desired. Original suspension geometry was poor, but it didn't make much difference: The chassis flexed all over the place. Stress cracks in the aluminum body were common. Era Replica Automobiles makes the most authentic 289 roadster kit, FIA roadster kit, 289FIA kit, and replica of the 289FIAfont>

Chassis thumbnail

More Details...

THE E.R.A. 289FIA CHASSIS was designed from the ground up to handle the power that most E.R.A. owners expect. It made no sense for us to have modern suspension and attach it to a flexible chassis. We have departed from the original layout because it was simply not good enough. In the process of designing our chassis, we considered all the basic designs .  

Click here for the details of our Chassis Design Logic!

A tubular/fabricated steel sub-structure is welded directly to the main rails and extends completely around the passenger compartment. This structure provides not only the mounting areas for the body support panels, door hinges, latches and dashboard, but also some passenger protection.  Stress cracks in the body are eliminated, as are cowl shake, squeaks and rattles. Because the inner panels of body rivet and bond to the chassis, we have created a semi-unitized structure that extends from the front of the engine compartment through the rocker panels and along the rear of the passenger compartment. Assembling the car with this degree of integration may take a little longer, but you end up with a much stiffer overall structure.

Our suspension pickup points feed loads directly into the chassis, minimizing bending moments. Where there are practical limitations, large sections and/or reinforcements are designed in.


The E.R.A. 289FIA independent front suspension is derived from our 427 . It uses our own custom made tubular control arms in a non-parallel, unequal length configuration. Good camber gain and anti-dive are designed into the geometry. Wheel travel is very generous.

The direct rack and pinion steering gear has 2.7 turns, lock to lock, with a 34 foot turning circle.. Effort, even without power assist is fairly light, and the steering has plenty of feel.  Through careful design of the E.R.A. 289FIA geometry, bump steer is near 0 over the full range of normal wheel travel .  The optional E.R.A. steering column and wood steering wheel are visual duplicates of the original parts. Custom fabricated tie rods and lower steering column are supplied with the kit.

Front susp thumbnail

More Details...

Modified GM uprights, new upper control arm cross-shafts, ball-joints, bushings and fasteners are included in the kit, ready to accept very large vented brakes on stock or optional pin drive hubs.  A large anti-sway bar is also available.

Some very good suspension videos on YouTube:

Suspension Geometry, Part One

Suspension Geometry, Part Two

Ackerman Steering


The standard E.R.A. independent rear suspension unit is based on Jaguar XJ-6 components but E.R.A. has modified the configuration for maximum performance .  Except for minor housing details, the Salisbury differential is identical to the one used on the original Cobra 427 and has proved reliable with very high horsepower engines. A limited slip differential is available. Because the gearset used is interchangeable with the Dana 44 series, there is a good choice of affordable gear sets.

Rear suspension thumbnail

More Details...

Axles and control arms are modified for the correct track, and the components fit in our unique SUBFRAME. This subframe isolates the suspension and differential noise, vibration and harshness from the chassis and allows us to feed suspension loads into the chassis properly.  The subframe with all the suspension is a simple bolt-in, and may be installed or removed very quickly. Our own trailing arms (with nylon-lined rod-ends) are included to locate the rear axles. Anti-squat geometry is designed in, and an anti-roll bar is optional.

If you can't find a core to rebuild, we stock used XJ6 units and sell them at our cost, as is. For those not wishing to do their own work, we offer complete rebuilt units. If you build your own, we will modify the parts at no charge with the purchase of our subframe.

The optional ERA rear suspension

Thumbnail new rear

Our fully adjustable rear suspension has outboard brakes and improved geometry for the ultimate in track performance.


Because the E.R.A. 289FIA has a reputation for authenticity, we encourage you to use an original style engine. The E.R.A. 289FIA is designed specifically for the 289/302/351 Ford engine.  Transmissions, fortunately have been updated since the '60s.  Now several 5 speeds are available, giving you good starting acceleration and good cruising rpm.

Several wheel variations are also available, including duplicates of the original Halibrand pin-drives and a rare bolt-on used on a 289 drag car.

The bottom line of all these components is PERFORMANCE. Many make claims, but E.R.A. delivers!

Weber engine

Click here to get more details on the engine, transmission, brakes and more!


KIT PRICE: $23,900

Building any kit replica involves a considerable commitment of money and time. Our personal goal is to protect your investment, as well as our reputation. The result: our standard assembly has almost every part either hinged, latched, or fit before it leaves the E.R.A. factory. The pictures at the right and below show how you really get your standard kit. We don't sell a stripped down kit.

Standard kit
An ERA kit, ready for pickup!

Real people with  a little mechanical skill and normal tools can build an E.R.A. 289FIA kit in about 100 hours, excluding the paint and body preparation. To demonstrate this ease of assembly, we put together a 427 kit at a SAAC convention in 35 man-hours, excluding interior (about 8 hr.) and paint. If you have any experience in normal automobile service, putting our kit together will be easy. With our comprehensive assembly manual , even novices can do it.  If you want to take a look, a text-only version of the manual is posted on the web in PDF format, and complete hardcopy or PDF versions are available for a refundable fee.

You simply put the pieces  together - there is no fabrication necessary. And we supply almost every fastener and clamp needed to complete the kit. Building the E.R.A. 289FIA is like a building a production car in your home.  and, if you want, E.R.A. can do any or all of the assembly for you, through a turn-key car.

Rear view of kit Carefully chosen components are integrated into the total design. The mounting holes, caged nuts, brackets, adapters, etc. for these components are built into our kit already. This not only makes your job easier. It makes the quality of all ERA cars consistently higher.

If you ever sell your car, the bottom-line of this philosophy will become obvious.
People expect ERA's to have consistent quality, and they are willing to pay for it.

Get the 289FIA STANDARD PARTS list here!


The customer can provide as much or as little of the drive train as he or she wishes:  Small block Ford engines through the 351W, transmission, Jaguar rear suspension assembly, GM front rotors and calipers, Subaru steering gear, steering column, coil-over shock units, exhaust system, road wheels, and tires. With few exceptions, everything else necessary to complete a finished automobile is there, down to the wiring harness clips.  The time and money you will save will surprise you.

Everything we supply is the highest quality. Our windshield frame is superb chrome plated brass. The headlights and parking/signal lights are OEM design and quality, made in the UK. Our wiring harness has soldered ends, not just crimped on, and is clearly marked at each connection. We do the details right!

Because the drivetrain may vary, our standard kit doesn't have items like radiator hoses. However, part numbers are listed in the manual so that you can find the required pieces locally.   If you have difficulty finding any required parts,E.R.A. can supply them at competitive prices.

Get a detailed list of required parts  (lifted right from the manual) here!


E.R.A. offers many things to make your assembly and part-locating job easier. We can supply just about anything that you need to complete your kit.  If you are not mechanically inclined,or are short of time, E.R.A. can also do any labor to help make your assembly job easier.
(Standard Kit Price - $23,900


The E.R.A. 289FIA is not available in a stripped down version that will probably never be finished properly. Our "Standard Assembly" is the most comprehensive basic kit offered by anybody. The reason for this is simple. We want your kit to be the best!  

Inconsistency dilutes the value of other kits no matter how well they were built by the customer. In fact, other marques have been falsely advertised and sold as E.R.A.'s because of this. Our cars have achieved a reputation ensuring consistent demand and high market value because all E.R.A.s were of the same high quality, with the same detailing and standard of finish.

We think that the E.R.A. 289FIA will be an investment that appreciates with time.

Although others may be initially cheaper to buy, they are not necessarily cheaper to build. All roadster replicas need the same basic parts. If they don't come with the kit you still have to purchase or fabricate them later. No other roadster replica offers the bottom line value of E.R.A. When you consider the high resale value of E.R.A. products, the 289FIA becomes a great buy.  We keep in close contact with all our customers, and any problems are quickly resolved. Good service is inseparable from a quality product. We know that a satisfied customer is our best salesperson.

Don't take our word for it. Look at all the others. Talk to people that have built E.R.A.s and other makes. Owners of E.R.A. replicas have always been our strongest advocates, especially those that have also built other brands. They are the ones who really know the difference. We will be happy to put you in touch with E.R.A. owners in your area. Peter at E.R.A. can give you names of owners in your area.



Assembly of the kit, with the drivetrain ready for installation will take about 100-120 hours, with body preparation and paint additional. Except for some straight-forward riveting and bonding of the body, all work is of the "wrench turning" variety. Most people can beat this conservative estimate! At a SAAC convention in California, we assembled a 427 kit, without interior and paint, in 35 man-hours.  The FIA will be similar.  And take note of our standard parts list.  We give you just about all of the pain-in-the-butt pieces that you otherwise would have to dig up new or in a junkyard.  That, alone, will save you many hours of frustration - and quite a bit of money, too!

Our comprehensive assembly manual makes your work straightforward and enjoyable.

Models - Body Structure - Chassis - Suspension - Drivetrain - Spec's -Kit Details -Options -Turnkey cars - History - Links

This link gives you our "standard" finished specifications and the options.

Payments and delivery times for kits and finished cars  


Don't just believe us!  Listen to the others!  
Customer-built E.R.A. cars have won the "BEST COBRA REPLICA"competition at the annual Shelby American meet in sixteen of the last seventeen years!

Congratulations to Joe Speziale (#385 427) and Bruce Clark  ( #2040 ERA GT ) on their wins at the 2000 SAAC!

Jeff Burgy

And Jeff Burgy's wins in '99, 2001, and 2004!

Motor Trend thumbnail
Kit car manufacturers were polled by Petersen's Kit Car Magazine. "Other than your own car, who makes the best Cobra replica, and Why?" The most frequent answer:


Here's a short blurb from a recent SAAC Newsletter .

And, then read some opinions from "The Big Boys" -
Car and Driver, Motor Trend, and others...

Roy Allen shows his exhaust to Shelby cars

Roy Allen races in the Tulsa Vintage Series against Shelbly Challenge Series cars and 4000s

Questions?  Check out our INDEX and  FAQs  (Frequently Asked Questions) . 90% of my e-mail questions are answered in there!

Check out the Complete Guide to Cobra Replicas by Curt Scott

Small Map

You're welcome to VISIT US!

 Get the MAP here!

More questions?

Call any time during business hours, Monday through Friday 8am-5pm at (860)224-0253, fax us at 860-827-1055, write us, or contact us through e-mail.

(Sorry - We can't do quotes via e-mail.  Phone or fax Peter at the above numbers)

Want references?

BROCHURE: Printed information is available by sending $5 to:

Era Replica Automobiles, Dept. INT, 21 Dewey St., New Britain, CT 06051.  
Please specify which car you are interested in.

You can download a PDF file of our complete brochure, or get a free copy without glossies HERE.

Small 427 image
Our ERA 427

Small GT image
Our ERA GT - a Ford GT40 replica


Look at the Cobracountry site
for more current events and our

ERA at the 2001 Carlisle
Kit Car Replica Nationals
Carlisle 2001

The results of the 2000 Northeast Replica Challenge are in!  ERA First in four out of five classes in which we were entered!  Fastest Time of the Day, too.

And of course we won two classes at SAAC 2000 too.

Want a complete PDF file of our information package?   Download it here!

Have an idea for improvements to our site?
We're always interested in making it better.


Driving Techniques for
Safety and Speed
Our display at the 2000 SAAC meet at Michigan International Speedway
2024, Era Replica Automobiles

Mailing Address

24 Dewey St.
New Britain, CT 06051
Tel: 860-224-0253

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New Britain, CT 06051

860-224-0253 fia/fia.htm  11/7/11

The Legal Stuff

Information on this site is correct to the fullest extent of our abilities. Era Replica Automobiles assumes no liability for any direct, indirect, incidental or consequential damage resulting from the information within..