Evan J. Smith
February 11, 2014

Ford Launches New Warranty Program

Ford recently announced the launch of a new warranty on Ford Genuine and Motorcraft service parts—unlimited mileage for 24 months from the time of purchase or installation. The Ford backing, clarity of terms, labor coverage, and access to Ford's nationwide network for coverage aims to provide greater value and peace of mind for all customers, whether they are general consumers, fleet operators, or independent repair facilities.

"Ford is dedicated to constant improvement in all we do. Ford Genuine and Motorcraft replacement parts are approved by Ford engineering," said Frederiek Toney, vice president, Ford Motor Company and president of Ford Customer Service. "In the unlikely event a part fails, our new warranty demonstrates our commitment to quality, our customers, and our intent to provide greater peace of mind and an improved ownership experience."

Ford also will now reimburse fleets and independent repair facilities up to $150 in labor coverage. Ford continues a No Commercial Exceptions policy as a commitment to fleet customers. In addition, Ford's part warranty provides customers towing reimbursement for repairs completed at any Ford or Lincoln Dealership.

If a service part purchased under the new warranty happens to fail and the repair is completed at a Ford or Lincoln dealership, the entire repair cost, labor, and towing will be covered. If the repair was completed at an independent installer or fleet facility, Ford will reimburse up to $150 in labor (the towing would not be covered).

In the case of an individual customer who chooses to install a part themselves, the warranty covers the cost of a replacement part for 24 months and unlimited miles. The do-it-youself labor time is not reimbursable.

Ford's previous service parts warranty was 12 months or 12,000 miles, whichever occurred first, and labor was covered if the part was installed by a Ford or Lincoln dealership. Labor was not covered on parts sold over-the-counter to a fleet or installer.

Mustang and F-Series Truck Named Hottest of 2013 SEMA Show

Ford Mustang and Ford F-Series are officially the "Hottest Car and Truck" at the 2013 Specialty Equipment Market Association show. The SEMA Award recognizes the most popular vehicles SEMA members feature in their displays at the organization's weeklong trade show in Las Vegas.

Before this year's show opened, SEMA officials walked the floor of the giant aftermarket expo and counted the number of new 2013 and 2014 cars and trucks exhibited in booths. More Ford Mustangs and F-Series are on display than any other car or truck—a testament to the popularity and appeal of Ford vehicles.

"Ford was the first automaker to share detailed vehicle specs with SEMA members," said John Felice, Ford vice president, U.S. Marketing, Sales and Service. "Thirty years later, we're proud that more aftermarket accessories and parts are created for Ford vehicles than for any other automaker." The specialty parts market has grown to a $31 billion industry, which translates into more than 1 million U.S. jobs, according to SEMA.

Ford's 27,000-square-foot indoor exhibit is home to 57 customized vehicles, including "Vandemonium," 10 Ford Transit Connect Wagons and cargo vans treated as blank canvas by aftermarket tuners to illustrate the vehicle's use beyond family or commercial transportation. Ford's exhibit also includes Snakebit, a custom 1956 F-100 pickup, presented by Kiss bassist Gene Simmons and his wife, Shannon Tweed. Snakebit features Ford's supercharged 5.4-liter V-8 engine and styling cues that pay homage to classic Shelby Mustangs. The truck will be auctioned off next year for charity.

Steeda's 14th Annual Stampede is a Success

Despite a rainy kick off, the 14th Annual Steeda Stampede saw hundreds of enthusiasts and their vehicles lining the lots of Steeda's Pompano Beach, Florida, location. The event consisted of a huge car show, dyno pulls, free food, a live DJ, and even a technical seminar presented by Steeda president Dario Orlando.

Customers found great deals in Frank's Garage and had a chance to have their questions answered in person by knowledgeable staff members. Even the Goodyear blimp made an appearance over the show. Each winner received a Steeda gift certificate.

Shelby American Brings Back Iconic Shleby GT for 2014

Shelby American returned one of its most popular cars to the lineup by unveiling the Shelby GT at the L.A. Auto Show this past November. The new-generation Shelby GT is based on the '14 Mustang GT with an incredibly attractive base price and 430 hp. The optional Shelby GT/SC supercharged model comes in either a 525hp or a staggering 624hp version.

"The Shelby GT was one of the most important vehicles in modern day Shelby history," said John Luft, president of Shelby American. In 2007, Ford Division, Carroll Shelby and Ford Racing created the Shelby GT. Beginning as 4.6L Mustang GT's assembled at Ford's Flat Rock, Michigan, plant, they were shipped to Shelby in Las Vegas for transformation. The 320hp coupes were all Performance White or Black with silver stripes. In 2008, Shelby added Vista Blue and a choice of coupe or convertible. About 8,000 Shelby GT's were built.

"The total cost of our entry-level '14 Shelby GT is only about $45,000, yet offers so much more than the previous model," said, Gary Patterson, Shelby American vice president of sales. "The performance-to-price ratio makes the Shelby GT perfect for any serious pony car enthusiast."

The new Shelby GT is a post-title program. Ford dealers send a customer's Mustang GT coupe or convertible to Shelby for upfit. Much of the car is enhanced or replaced to create a potent, balanced performer worthy of the Shelby name. Entry-level package upgrades include a Ford Racing suspension, Shelby branded exhaust, intake and engine tune for 430 hp, specially designed wheels and tires, short shifter, hood and Le Mans stripes that make it uniquely Shelby. Every Shelby GT version is 50-state emissions-legal and runs on pump gas.

The 624hp Shelby GT/SC version is expected to blast from 0 to 60 mph in about 3.7 seconds; the quarter-mile time should be in the mid-11-second range. The car should also pull over 1g on the lateral skidpad.

The price of the base Shelby GT package, not including the car, is $14,995, making a nicely equipped car about $45,000 total. The Shelby GT/SC package begins at $27,995. Build your own Shelby GT online at www.shelbyamerican.com/.