Oakley Teams Collaborate To Build Bubba Watson Custom, Bulletproof Ford Raptor
Oakley’s star golfer, Bubba Watson is known for many things; his excellence on the links, his charming southern antics and his love for unique motor vehicles. From his famous hovercraft to The General Lee, Watson has always had an affinity for interesting rides. With that in mind, Oakley’s golf and motorsports teams got together to build the ultimate custom Ford Raptor for the long driving southpaw.
Al Janc – Oakley Sports Marketing Manager of Golf explained how the inspiration and the idea for the truck came about:
“Bubba Watson does a lot of research on things he is interested in,” said Janc. “When Oakley showed interest in adding Bubba to our global list of sponsored athletes, Bubba researched Oakley and was really impressed by the way we approach marketing. One of the things that really impressed Bubba was our Sports Marketing trucks at Oakley Headquarters; in particular a surf specific truck with all the cool gadgets we had installed after market. As a result, we decided to build Bubba this bulletproof vehicle that he could enjoy, while helping to represent the brand and at the same time protect he and his family. It was great fun taking what he wanted in a truck and adding things we thought were cool to come up with this finished product together.”
The truck itself if a 2013 Ford Raptor Super Crew Cab with some major customization to reflect Watson and Oakley’s relationship. While the creation of the concept of the truck began almost a year ago, the actual build of the custom Oakley ride began towards the end of 2013 and took nearly 6 months to complete, including 1000’s of hours of labor. The actual build was done by Mike Smith Fabrication out of Huntington Beach, California.
The biggest feature on the truck comes in the form of a bulletproof exterior, including the windows. Why did Watson want a bulletproof truck? Why not? It’s Bubba Watson. Beyond the defense details, the truck is custom wrapped in a black digital cammo print. The front of the truck features a reworked 6160 billet aluminum Oakley grille. A custom Oakley logo was machine worked to fit the curvature of the hood and made of the same material as the grille, which is also commonly found in racecar parts.
The exterior is not the only part of the truck featuring unique customization. The interior was redesigned with lime green features; one of Watson’s favorite colors. With green leather stitching on the seats, complete with custom Oakley branded head rests and green dashboard features, the truck’s interior is unlike anything you’ve seen before.
And in true Watson/Oakley fashion, a final custom feature includes four distinct horn sounds at the touch of a remote button, including the legendary General Lee jingle.
“Doing projects like this is in our DNA at Oakley,” said Todd Hayes, Director of Sports Marketing – Motor Sports. “But when Al (Janc) told me I needed to build him a bulletproof truck for Bubba Watson, that got me even more fired up. Dealing with Al and Bubba, you can only imagine how the concept evolved over time. During the build there were some painful days but the end product speaks for itself. This is a win-win for Bubba and Oakley.”
Watson shared his excitement with the final product when he took to his Twitter account to preview the truck:
— bubba watson (@bubbawatson) January 30, 2014
“I have to say that my team at Oakley has really out-done themselves… again,” Watson said about the truck. “Last year, I started working with their motorsports division to come up with an idea for a truck for me that would be unique and have some special features, but that I could still use everyday. I’ve seen some really cool surf trucks and other toys that Oakley has created so I knew they could design something new and different for me. We went with the Ford Raptor because it’s a great truck, it’s functional and I already knew I liked it because this will be the third one I’ve owned. Seeing the finished product is even more impressive than I imagined. My favorite thing would have to be that it’s bulletproof. How many people can say they have a bulletproof truck? I can! Plus, it has a matte black and gray ‘digital camo’ paint job, big off-road tires and lime green accents on the interior. It’s awesome!”
Check out Bubba’s new toy in this video created by the man himself: