In line with their process of continual improvement, SunTour took the SunTour V series and upgraded the parallelogram plates from steel to aluminium - the result is the 1973 SunTour V Luxe series.
As well as making the derailleur fully 128g lighter than the V GT, this upgrade also had the effect of uprating the V series to be all aluminium (like the super expensive Shimano Crane) and a step ahead of the comparably priced Shimano Titlist (which had steel pulley cage plates). In the 1970’s intense competition between SunTour and Shimano was improving the derailleur so fast that European manufacturers did not know what had hit them.
This example, with its flat pulley cage plates, is the earlier style of V GT Luxe, the classic, best selling, touring model in the V Luxe series - truly a great derailleur. This particular example has its pulley cage and its outer parallelogram plate anodised a particularly disturbing shade of red. This appears to be original - see for example the rivet in front of the tension pulley.
It is also an oft-forgotten fact that the simple, strong, competent SunTour V GT Luxe was the preferred derailleur of many early mountain bikers - the SunTour Mountech and Shimano Deore XT (M700), with their multiple sprung pivots were initially viewed with some (justifiable) suspicion. However, I don’t know if even Gary Fisher, with his legendary sense of ‘style’, could have stomached this particular shade of red on his Repack clunker.
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