Worth the Wait – Rejean Desjardins’ 1965 Ford Mustang
Owning Boss Mustangs was always a dream for Canadian enthusiast Rejean Desjardins, a dream which he has been lucky to fulfill with a ’69 Boss 302, a ’70 Boss 429, and a ’71 Boss 351. A ’65 had always been on his radar, and he had been watching one get built as a modern muscle machine for a long time. After 18 years, the project stalled for good, even though it was about 80-percent finished.
Rejean knew the Mustang was an incredible car, built with the highest quality and craftsmanship. It deserved to be finished, so he spoke to the owner and soon had the car in his possession with the plan to see it to completion.
The bodywork and PPG Alpine White paint was done by Leon Boudreau and features loads of subtle tricks and one-off components such as a one-piece front clip, molded fender extensions, and modified wheel arches. The hood and roof are formed of carbon fiber, leading to the unique stacked rear glass treatment that follows to a seamless carbon fiber rear valence. Note also the flush-mounted LED taillamps and custom bumper with hidden back up lights.
Leon is also responsible for the interior which is packed with modern design elements. You need to look closely for the inconspicuous roll cage as it becomes nearly invisible thanks to the extra planning and design of the headliner and interior panels. A dash from a 2006 GTO was modified and filled with custom gauges from Classic Instruments and a Vintage Air system is tucked in there to keep the driver and passenger comfortable in their Gen 5 Viper seats.
A 5.0-liter Coyote powerplant was snuggly situated under the hood and is fed through a trick InnoV8 stack injection system. The engine is surrounded by custom carbon fiber panels, JC Customs valve covers, and an effective cooling system fabricated by Mathieu Boudreau. Power is transferred to a Moser 9-inch rearend through a Centerforce clutch assembly and a Tremec TKO 600 five-speed transmission.
To handle the increased torque and power, Mathieu crafted a custom Watt’s link rear suspension that was complemented with custom frame connectors. A trick CNC-machined JME front K-member and control arms make up the front suspension with Wilwood six-piston calipers, 13-inch rotors, and Forgeline SC3C wheels in wrapped in Michelin Pilot Sport tires.
It took more than 20 years, but thanks to Rejean’s dedication and the talents of Leon and Mathieu, the Mustang finally was finished – and what better way to celebrate than with a Top Five finish in Goodguys’ 2023 PPG Street Machine of the Year competition!
Photos by John Jackson, Damon Lee & Terry Lysak