Watson’s 2015 Mustang Build Roars onto the Motorsports Scene at SEMA

2015 WR car w trailer

Images courtesy of Watson Racing

Ask any automotive enthusiast in-the-know and he or she will tell you that the hottest thing on wheels at this year’s Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) Show will no doubt be the 2015 Ford Mustang. There are more companies than we can shake a stick at building customized new Mustangs, hoping to garner the SEMA Show’s Hottest Car award next week (November 4 to 7, 2014).

IMG_1707However of all the custom S550s made ready for the automotive performance aftermarket’s biggest show, one of the cars headed for the 2014 SEMA Show and then onto the show and racing circuit next year that we are drooling over most is the 2015 Mustang built by Watson Racing of Brownstown Township, Michigan.

Watson’s plan for the car is to show it at SEMA, then onto the PRI Show in the Watson Racing booth. Once home from PRI they will shake down the car to be sure it’s ready for the strip in the spring. Their target is to debut the car at the NMRA season opener in Bradenton, Florida, in either Coyote Modified or True Street. It will run the NMRA schedule as well as some NHRA races, and this example mechanical equine beauty will also be available for viewing at events such as the Carlisle Ford Nationals, Mustang Memories, Mustang Week, and Mid-America in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

When we talked to John Phillips at Watson Engineering, he told us, “Our plan for the build was to create the ultimate street/strip car–lightweight, fast, but still street legal. We definitely achieved our goal.” As far as the difficulty of building a high-profile project such as this, Phillips said, “The biggest obstacle was time. We were given five weeks to complete the build. Most companies wouldn’t attempt this level of build in such a compressed timeframe.” The magnitude of work that Watson Engineering put into this build in such a short amount of time and the resulting look of the car is certainly a testimony of the company’s ability to get a job done well.

Although as of this report, they have not been able to shake it down on the track or get it on the dyno, Phillips’ estimate of the power output from the car, “is a mid-to-high 9 second car with power in the low 700 hp range.” Just take a look at the photos and check out the enormously long list of mod’s, and you’ll understand why we think this just might be our favorite SEMA Mustang this year.


• Ford Racing Supercharger
• Ford Racing cam set
• Ford Racing Throttle body
• Ford Racing Mass air meter
• Tremec Magnum XL six-speed transmission
• American Racing Headers long tube headers
• American Racing Headers X-pipe
• Pypes electronic exhaust cut-outs
• Magnaflow mufflers
• Dynotech one-piece, lightweight driveshaft
• Centerforce clutch assembly
• Watson Racing 10-gallon fuel cell
• Optima Yellow Top battery
• C&R heat exchanger
• Watson Racing intercooler reservoir
• Watson Racing overflow tank

Chassis and Suspension
• Watson Racing lightweight K-member
• Watson Racing driveshaft loop
• Watson Racing lightweight, tubular bumpers, front and rear
• Strange race suspension
• Strange lightweight brakes
• Watson Racing stainless brake-line kit
• Hurst line lock
• Wilwood proportioning valve
• Ford Racing heavy-duty IRS bushings
• Ford Racing heavy-duty halfshafts
• Watson Racing trunk-mount battery kit
• Moroso/Watson Racing push/pull master kill switch

Wheels and Tires
• Weld Racing RT-S, 17×4.7-inch front and 17×9.5-inch rear
• M&H Racemaster drag radials, 28/4.5-17 front and 325/45-17 rear

• Custom paint and body by Ice Nine Customs
• MVS/Watson Racing carbon fiber 3-inch cowl hood
• Watson Racing hood strut kit
• Watson Racing fuel door charging port
• Ford Racing decklid trim panel
• Aerocatch flush mount hood pins

• Sparco Evo 3 fixed back race seats
• SPC Interiors custom upholstery
• Teamtech race seat harnesses
• Aim Motorsports GT 350 steering wheel
• Sparco steering wheel quick disconnect
• Watson Racing race seat mounts
• Watson Racing six-point, chrome-moly, weld-in roll cage
• Watson Racing aluminum rear bulkhead closeout panel
• Ford Racing gauges
• Rick Jones carbon fiber roll bar covers


About the author

Stuart Bourdon

A passion for anything automotive (especially off-road vehicles), camping, and photography led to a life exploring the mountains and deserts of the Southwest and Baja, and a career in automotive, outdoor, and RV journalism.
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