The 5031FT proved to be one of the most provocative and controversial models ever. To some, it was an horrible Frankenstein creation -- the sort of thing that doesn't appear in mirrors and should never be mentioned in polite company.
To others, it actually worked pretty well, despite all logic to the contrary.
So what was the source of all the consternation? Basically, a Rancher flattop with a FideliTron pickup. And a Bigsby. As one might expect, it wasn't really the world's greatest acoustic, but plugged in it came alive and started making sense. Some careful wizardry at Gretsch HQ kept the feedback demons from howling, most notably a completely boxed-in pickup ("iso-chamber mounted", according to the marketing literature) and extra bracing. Plugged in, it offered a unique and interesting voice.
Still scared quite a few people, though.
Features included a sunburst gloss finish, bound solid spruce top with scalloped "X" bracing and the classic Rancher triangular sound hole (with binding), mahogany sides and bound arched back, mahogany neck, 16-fret rosewood fingerboard with Neo-Classic™ “thumbnail” inlays, volume control, compensated bridge saddle with rosewood base, deluxe tuners, and gold-plated hardware.