|The end of SVT as we know it
Chills went up and down my spine as i read an article recently about the end of SVT. According to Steve Cole Smith of Edmunds Inside Line Ford is about to announce the offical end of it's Specialty Vehicles Team.
Word is that the end of SVT started with the build of a greatly loved car, the Ford GT. In an effort to complete the GT by Ford's 100th anniversary it "took its toll on the SVT staff, slowing development of more mainstream future products, such as the next-generation Lightning, an updated SVT Focus and an SVT version of the Fusion."
According to the article Ford has been secretly dismantling SVT from the inside out. What most people dont realize is that SVT no longer has its own dedicated public relations staff, independent engineering team, press fleet or events trailer. "The dealer network that was painstakingly assembled among Ford's top dealers has crumbled, and some dealers reportedly are talking about a class-action lawsuit." Not to mention the release of many of SVT's top dogs including Top Scarpello, and of course John Coletti.
Although the creation of the Ford GT may have been the straw that broke the camels back, the first public signs of SVT's demise had to be when Ford admitted that the highly anticipated third gen SVT Lightning was being "delayed". It doesnt take much of a genius to read between those lines. Afterwards they teased us with a 390hp SUT called the Sport Trac Adrenalin which many hinted was the Lightning itself. Unfortunately the teasing turned to tears as we recently got word that the Adrenalin wouldn't be produced as part of Ford's "Way Forward" restructuring campaign.
The offical end of SVT is rumored to happen on April 1st. From that point on the only signs we'll see of SVT are possible "SVT" badged suspension upgrades on certain models. For those waiting for the GT500 fear not as it's production will continue. Although it will be the last of the genuine SVT models the Shelby GT500 will be sold through all of Ford's dealerships, "not just SVT participants"
Where do we go from here? Well to be honest I dont know. There has been tons of speculation that Ford would being producing some sort of limited edition Boss Mustang. Whether or not the demise of SVT will rain on that parade has yet to be seen. All in all i think it's going to be hard for the hardcore SVT fans among us (including me) to even think of the great cars that were pumped out of our beloved Specialty Vehicles Team with shedding a tear. So long good friend.
Team spiritless: Ford's SVT concept is history -Edmunds.com
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