When it comes to working on Mustangs, maybe we guys should take a few lessons from the ladies of the SEMA Businesswomen's Network. Of course, we know better than to put two women in the same kitchen at the same time, but it appears that up to 40 women can work in the shop together with no problem. That's what happened when volunteers from the SBN spent much of last summer building "High Gear," a '13 Mustang GT, for their Power by Women project.
They have the t-shirts to prove it: "A woman's place is in the garage!"
"You know women are working on a car because they actually have the instructions out and are reading them," laughs SBN "crew chief" Kellie Colf. "We were also complimented for our cleanliness and for putting tools back where they belong. And of course, there was always food on the work bench."
Sponsored by Ford Motor Company and Mustang Monthly's parent company Source Interlink Media, the SEMA Mustang Build: Power by Women project was created to bring awareness to the females working in the automotive aftermarket and to encourage more women to pursue careers in the industry. Ford provided the '13 Mustang GT; the SBN provided the volunteer women who modified the car at the Source Interlink Media shop in El Segundo, California.
"There are a lot of women in the automotive aftermarket," Colf adds, pointing out that many of them work in administrative or PR positions. "But a lot of people don't realize that most of them can turn wrenches too."
The project started last spring with a design competition—by women, of course—that was voted on via Source Interlink Media websites, including www.mustangmonthly.com. Ford's Jennifer Seely created the winning design, "High Gear," describing it as "A luxury Mustang concept inspired by international products in categories such as jewelry, couture clothing, and architecture."
After talking with Colf, we've got to say that it sounds like the women were much more organized than men. First, they placed SBN volunteers into teams—powertrain, undercarriage, exterior, etc.—based on experience and skills. Then a week was scheduled to complete the work in each of the various build segments.
The Mustang's arrival at the SIM shop set the project in motion. The powertrain team jumped into action first, going under the hood to install the Edelbrock E-Force supercharger and other underhood components. On week two, the undercarriage team arrived to upgrade the suspension and install the MagnaFlow exhaust system. The interior crew added a Kicker stereo system and other upgrades on week three, leaving some of it partially uncompleted until after the body and paint work at L&G Enterprises, where custom painter Theresa Contreras covered the factory white paint with Liquid Satin Black Candy. The Mustang then returned to the SIM shop for a final week of assembly, detailing, and a photo shoot before the car's debut at the SEMA Show in November.
Colf, who many Mustang Monthly readers may remember from her time with Eaton Detroit Spring, spent most of last summer overseeing the project as crew chief. Overall, she says the entire project went smoothly. "No tools were thrown and there was no swearing. If there was a problem, we put down the tools, stepped back, and calmly figured out how to fix it."
Hey guys, maybe there's a lesson in there somewhere.
Ford provided a white ’13 Mustang GT/CS for the SBN project. Most of the work was done at
During “Powertrain week,” SBN members (left to right) Dr. Karen Salvaggio, Samantha Whitfi
Wait a minute, that’s not a girl! It’s actually Camee Edelbrock’s father, Vic Edelbrock, w
High Gear Specifications
Edelbrock E-Force 5.0L supercharger kit
Ford Racing billet coil covers
Classic Tube StopFlex stainless braided hoses
Flex-a-lite electric fan and controller
Trufiber carbon fiber radiator cover
K&N air and oil filters
Royal Purple fluids
California Pony Cars underhood covers and gas strut hood lifts
MagnaFlow exhaust system
Advanced Clutch Technology clutch kit and ProLite flywheel
Moser Engineering differential cover, C-clip axles, bearings, and wheel studs
H&R Springs coilover suspension
hiteline USA adjustable control arms, Panhard bar, rear chassis brace, and four-point adjustable sway bars
Katzkin leather seat covers, shifter boot, and door inserts
Creations N' Chrome custom interior inserts
Ford Boss 302 shifter and sill plates
Roush Performance pedals
Lloyds floor mats
Design Engineering carpet underlayment
Kicker sound system
Body & Exterior:
L&G Enterprises custom body and paint
Creations N' Chrome exterior accents
Oracle Lighting headlights and fog lights
Ford Pony grille
3D Carbon body kit
Forgeline Motorsports wheels
Pirelli P-Zero tires, P265/35ZR20 front and P305/30ZR20 rear
Wilwood disc brakes
Liz Miles (left) works for Holley, but she found herself on the other side of the Mustang
The instructions didn’t say anything about grinding, but Mollie Lewis (left) and Rebecca O
Rebecca Olavarietta helps with the disassembly of the front end in preparation for the H&R
The Mustang then returned to the SIM shop for a final week of assembly, detailing, and a photo shoot before the car's debut at ...
Vehicle Build Chair: Rose Kawasaki, Exports International
Vehicle Build Crew Chief: S. Kellie Colf, Colf Creative Resources
Project Vehicle Coordinator: Sherry Kollien, Ford Motor Company
Design: Jennifer Seely, Ford Motor Company
Build Consultant: Marla Moore, Hypertech
Quality Assurance: Jennifer LaFever, Roush Yates Racing Machine
JoAnn Bortles (team leader), Crazy Horse Custom Paint
Julia Johnson, Skyline College (instructor)
Samantha Whitfield, Health/Fitness/Nutrition blog
Dr. Karen Salvaggio, Thunder Valley Racing
Stephanie S. Justice, Source Interlink Media
Elana Scherr, Hot Rod magazine
Julia Cyr, Hot Rod magazine
Raquel Rangel, Skyline College (student)
Kirstin Stone, Turbosmart USA
Mollie Lewis (team leader), All in the Wrist Auto Repair
Coelette Chenier, MagnaFlow Exhaust
Kristen Wright, MagnaFlow Exhaust
Kelly Martin, Weathertech
Laurie Paolone, MagnaFlow Exhaust
Liz Miles, Holley Performance Products
Rebecca Olavarietta (suspension), Roco 4x4
Theresa Contreras (team leader), L&G Enterprises
Kristin Watson, Creations n' Chrome
Sara Morosan, L&G Enterprises
Lisa McCarley, Chicago Pneumatic Tool Company
Rebecca Olavarietta and Mollie Lewis were involved with the installation of the Wilwood fr
In addition to improved handling, the Whiteline USA adjustable control arms, panhard bar,
MagnaFlow’s Coelette Chenier and Laurie Paolone show off the high-performance mufflers tha
Wheels and Tires
Christina Alongi, Pirelli Tire
Kristin Cline (team leader), CIE Studios
Rachel De Barros, Gearhead Diva
Genevieve Saxton, Skyline College (student)
Michelle Perez, Skyline College (student)
Liza Sheen, Kizuna Kustomz
Jessi Combs, TV personality
Susan Carpenter (team leader), JR Products
Nan Gelhard, Summit Racing Equipment
Christina Kwan, Kwan International Media and Marketing
PR Task Force
Camee Edelbrock (team leader), Schiefer Media
Zan Martin, Martin and Company Advertising
Tracy L. Teuscher, The Buzz Maker!