Friday, February 8, 2008, posted by Auto Rider at 6:59 PM

At the Chicago Auto Show, the Dearborn-based automaker launched its very first factory-customized model – the Edge Sport.

The turbocharged Sport trim features 22-inch polished aluminum wheels, the first size on a crossover, or 20-inch premium painted wheels with Sport-branded black center hubs. To complete the rugged and aggressive appearance of the vehicle, engineers at Ford give it low-profile tires.

What’s more, the vehicle’s design and features like VistaRoof™ and SYNC helped make Ford Edge the best-selling crossover in the nation.

According to the automaker, the eight-piece Edge Sport body kit includes a unique front air dam, side skirts, lower door caps and a rear skirt, all finished in body color, instead of the dark lower on other Edge models. Additionally, the front air dam features and integrated fog lamps.

The Dearborn automaker also offered perky details such as the custom Sport badging, "foundry gray", smoked headlamp and tail lamp lenses, and polished dual exhaust tips emerging from openings in the rear skirt.

"While custom-made to appeal to customers, Edge Sport is smart business," said Mark Fields, president for The Americas. "The aftermarket industry has grown to a $40 billion annual business, and crossovers are the fastest-growing vehicle segment in the U.S. We want customers who crave something special to know that Ford can 'customize' their Edge - right at the factory."

The Sport trim, which joins the SE, SEL and Limited models in the Edge range, makes it the very first vehicle in the crossover segment to offer customization.

Edge Sport will be available in Sport Blue, Brilliant Silver, Ebony and Redfire. Inside, dark gray leather seats feature unique suede-feel patterned inserts in a combination of light and dark gray, with contrasting stitching for premium appeal. The vehicle is scheduled to roll out into dealerships this fall.

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