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Gene Simmons, Ford collaborate on 'Snakebit' F-100

By Nelson Ireson

Published November 06, 2013
  • snakebit-660.jpg

The Ford truck line has grown in many ways over the past half-century, but legendary KISS bassist Gene Simmons’ custom 1956 F100 brings the best of the past and the present together in one beautiful show truck--with a little added spice. To make it even sweeter, the special one-off will be auctioned for charity in 2014.

Unveiled at the 2013 SEMA showexternal-link.png in Las Vegas, the ‘Snakebit’ truck was a collaboration between Simmons, his wife Shannon Tweed, and Ford, and it is styled to salute another aspect of Ford’s history: the Shelby Mustangs. A badge on the grille gives a direct nod to the high-performance muscle cars, but the Snakebit F100 also honors the legendary Shelbys in other ways.

Perhaps the most impressive homage to the Shelby Mustangs is the 550-horsepower Ford Racing supercharged V-8 engine under the hood. Displacing 5.4 liters, and backed by a six-speed manual gearbox, the engine should give the rear-drive resto-mod pickup all of the punch of its sportier cousins—not to mention a healthy dose of driving fun.

Read: Chevrolet Cheyenne is the Camaro Z/28 of pickups

Extensive modifications were made to give the 1956 Ford F100 its new look: the wheelbase was lengthened five inches, a billet machined floor mimics a wood pattern, and 18-inch front wheels tuck up under the fenders, while 20-inch rear wheels help apply all of the 550 horses to the ground. The wheel designs were also inspired by the Shelby Mustangs.

Inside the Snakebit F100, a handmade interior features two-tone leather, a custom leather-wrapped dash, and a contoured bench seat from Glide Engineering designed to suggest the Shelby interior style.

Next year, the Snakebit F100 will be auctioned for charity at a Barrett-Jackson event. The proceeds will go toward construction of a children’s hospital in Tweed’s hometown of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada. Tom Foster, president of Saskatoon’s Industrial Machine & Manufacturing originally conceived the idea for the custom truck and charity benefit. Foster also named the project “Wheels of Dreams.”

“The Wheels of Dreams project symbolizes how people can come together to meet the needs of our children and families by raising much needed funds for the new Children’s Hospital of Saskatchewan,” said Brynn Boback-Lane, president and CEO of the Children’s Hospital Foundation of Saskatchewan. “Just like the hospital, this concept car project started as an idea and a desire to do something better for our community.

“What began as a grassroots idea, the volunteers and supporters of Wheels of Dreams have turned into a major international fundraiser opportunity that will ultimately benefit our foundation and the children of Saskatchewan who require the services and care of a hospital,” Boback-Lane added.

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Yeah, the more people do tribute vehicles with a styling cue of a Shelby, the more prestige the brand gets, and the better for all of us.

Each time this happens, it continues recognizing the brand and keeping it alive, and keep in mind they all have one thing in common- they could have chosen so many iconic brands from history, but the fact that its the Shelby that constantly gets the nod? That says something right there folks.

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I suppose you could be flattered if you have a Shelby that all manner of people, hypesters, promoters, FrankenStang builders, and wannabes want to stick snakes and badges on their cars and invoke some Shelby memories. I saw a C5 Corvette one time with a Tiffany Snake badge on it, almost threw up, cheapens both brands IMO. I don't see that doing this makes any of my Shelbys more valuable or impressive or improves the brand. Selling it for charity is fine, no problem there, but like Shelby himself said, a name means nothing unless the car is superior. This kind of thing otherwise is just silly at best, and fraudulent at worst.

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I guess I just am tired of every thread turning negative, and wanted to try and bring out the positive in it, not the negative. :raining:


In fact, I kind of bought a Shelby to have another good thing in my life, not to have another thing to bitch about. :sunny:

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