After 51 years, the SEMA Show has become many things. Once primarily a marketplace for hot-rod parts, the Show has grown to embrace all things automotive, commingling varied tastes, disciplines and business models—all under one roof. It’s the one place in the world where you’ll find a customized Lamborghini sitting next to an outrageous hot rod, flanked by a 1,000hp Camaro and a custom Harley. With 12 distinctly different segments represented, the SEMA Show creates crossover possibilities and an energy far greater than the sum of its parts.
The 2017 SEMA Show kicked-off the morning of October 31, with the New Product Awards. The annual competition recognizes outstanding achievements in the development of products being introduced to the automotive specialty-equipment market at the SEMA Show. Products are judged in 16 award categories, and each category has one winner and two runners-up.
Your business invented a new product and took the time to patent the invention. Now you have a pretty plaque on the wall commemorating your patent grant, but what else can you do with those rights? How does your business realize a return on its patent investment?
Hot Rodders of Tomorrow (HROT) has been going strong since its inception in 2008. HROT is a timed competition where teams of five high-school students go head to head to disassemble and reassemble a small-block Chevy 350. The program is simultaneously educating and empowering students while they compete. The idea is to give students access and experience with the automotive industry by way of a team-building challenge.
At the 2017 SEMA Show, the SDC rolled out a completely refreshed user interface. Members who received demonstrations at the Show saw a Product Information Management System (PIMS) that offers more functionality, features and information than ever before. Now, members log-in to their dashboard to view the status of their account at a glance, and review exports, data health, new members and more.
With the SEMA Show wrapped up and a new year on its way, SEMA-member companies are busy absorbing the latest aftermarket trends and adjusting their marketing and sales strategies for 2018. The task can seem overwhelming, especially after experiencing the dizzying array of new products and innovations that flooded the recent Show.
If you think the drive toward more vehicle autonomy and connectedness won’t impact your business, think again. Advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) and connected vehicle technologies (CVT) are already flooding the OEM marketplace and rippling through the aftermarket in new and unexpected ways, reshaping the design, production, sales and servicing of a surprising array of parts and accessories. The only question is whether your business is ahead of, keeping pace with, or behind the rapid wave of opportunities heading our way.
It is my pleasure to welcome exhibitors, attendees and enthusiasts to the 2017 SEMA Show. It’s here that more than 160,000 attendees with a common interest come together to see the latest trends in automotive innovation reflected in revolutionary new products and vehicles showcasing them in a highly effective marketplace. There’s no question about it: If you are looking for opportunity, you have come to the right place.
This year, the SEMA Action Network (SAN) is celebrating two decades of political horsepower. Over the past 20 years, long battles have been waged over Cash for Clunkers initiatives, unfair exhaust-noise restrictions, excessive taxes, titling and registration problems, backyard builds, racing and other issues. From fax machines to Facebook, the SAN’s history is chronicled on www.SEMAsan.com/history.
Organizers of the first High Performance and Custom Trade Show, which was held 50 years ago at Dodger Stadium, recognized early on that the Show needed to move out of the ballpark’s halls and into a proper convention facility for it to have any growth potential. The second show—already being referred to as the SEMA Show—did just that, relocating in 1968 to the Anaheim Convention Center.