Texas sized problems loom for builder of Shelby "Eleanor" and Foose Mustangs
11-07-07: It’s a bummer time in Farmers Branch, Texas where Unique Performance has been headquartered for some time. The company is the custom shop and manufacturer of many of the high end Mustangs that have become commonplace in the hobby. This includes the 1967 Shelby “Eleanor” GT-500E, continuation Shelby GT350SRs , the Foose Stallion Mustang, and other notable custom classics.
News has come out in the past month that there was trouble brewing at the company regarding legal issues between Carroll Shelby Licensing and Unique Performance as it was reported that customers who had given deposits weren’t getting cars. Shelby has been reported to be legally severing ties with the company over the customer and PR fallout.
Now, Autoweek and a number of other publications are reporting that the local authorities have raided the Unique Performance shop and headquarters and seized some 61 vehicles. It is alleged that these vehicles had improper or illegible VIN numbers and that the authorities have been investigating improper actions on the part of Unique Performance with regard to VIN numbers and titles. Some 58 Mustangs in various stages of completion and 3 Camaros are reported to have been confiscated by the Texas Department of Transportation.
What is potentially an even bigger bummer is the vast array of customers out there who have given deposits on cars that are now potentially evidence in a criminal or civil matter. When you combine this with reports that Unique Performance may be in deep financial trouble the likelihood that these customers will ever see their money or their cars is pretty slim.
There is no word on whether or not the spectacle will affect the production of the Foose Stallion Mustang or the Foose F-150 pickups. Chip Foose like Shelby Licensing of course has licensed his name and designs to be manufactured by the company and is not directly connected with the problems in Farmers Branch. The debacle however is sure to put a PR stain on the cars bearing their names.
However this matter shakes out it’s a bummer for the Mustang community. Unique Performance has been highly respected up to this point and involved with the biggest names in the hobby.
Unique Performance has up until recently been listed as a strategic partner of Quantum Tecstar, a large holding company which is also connected with Classic Design Concepts, Empire Coach, Regency, Wheel To Wheel Performance and other automotive brands. Interesingly enough, the Farmers Branch subsidiary is no longer listed on the Quantum website.