Racing & Performance continues to be the largest section at the SEMA Show, increasing steadily in net square footage from year to year. In 2015, exhibitors also entered nearly 1,000 racing and performance products into the New Products Showcase—growth of more than 25% over 2014. LED lights and EFI solutions were among the most-scanned products that piqued buyer interest. Other standouts included Brembo’s B-M8 monobloc caliper, winner of the Best Engineered New Product award; C&R Performance’s drag race barrel intercooler, winner of the Best Performance-Racing Product award; and aFe Power’s DFS780 series diesel fuel system, winner of the Performance-Street Product award.
While the 2015 North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit was more about modern and efficient musclecars such as the Dodge Hemi Hellcat Challenger and Charger, Ford Shelby GT350 and GT Supercar and Cadillac CTS-V, this year’s show had many companies focusing on their lines of pickups that come in many shapes and sizes. With gas prices going lower by the week, light-truck market sales have overtaken sales of cars. A recent article in Automotive News indicated that 60% of new vehicles purchased are now categorized as light trucks.
Why export? One of the proven methods to increasing the health of your firm is to diversify your customer base, which can improve your bottom line, lead to product-improvement ideas and improve a firm’s ability to ride out future economic downturns. It is also the way to reach the 97% of consumers residing outside the United States and take advantage of global demand for products made in the United States.
Marketers looking for a dashboard to manage every aspect of their interactions with customers will want to take a detailed look at Salesforce.com—the number-one-selling customer relationship management (CRM) solution on the market today, according to Capterra, a company that advises businesses on the best software to buy.
Omix-ADA showcased a custom Jeep Wrangler JK Unlimited built in support of SEMA Cares at its Off-Road Success Center during the 2015 SEMA Show in Las Vegas, marking the third time that Omix-ADA has partnered with SEMA Cares over the past three years. The first was with a donation of $50,000 in 2013. Last year, it was with the first-ever offering of a custom-built Jeep Wrangler, with all proceeds going to the charity.
The SEMA Battle of the Builders competition is described as the ultimate challenge for vehicle builders. With customizers showcasing their newest creations at the SEMA Show, the 2015 competition featured more than 200 submissions, with builders vying for the title of Top Builder.
From the influence of Internet sales to the integration of new materials and advanced manufacturing processes, the tire and wheel industries remain in flux. A tire tariff that threatened significant upheaval seems to have been overstated, but brick-and-mortar retailers are seeing the unmistakable effect of online sales. On the wheel side, flow forming, carbon fiber, concave designs and translucent colors are emerging trends.
It takes dedication, hard work and drive to build and grow an automotive specialty-equipment business. Even more so to grow an entire industry. Yet to help its members succeed and prosper, SEMA relies on individuals from every industry segment to step forward and bring their own vision and initiative. Consequently, it seems only fitting once a year to celebrate an individual whose contributions best embody this SEMA mission. For 2015, that individual is Kathryn Reinhardt of MagnaFlow, who found herself named SEMA Person of the Year at the recent 2015 SEMA Show Industry Banquet in Las Vegas.
The automotive specialty-equipment industry is built around innovation, and new products are its lifeblood. Each year, more than 2,000 new parts, instruments, assemblies and marketing tools are introduced at the New Products Showcase. And each year, one winner and two runners-up are selected from each of 16 categories as the best of the myriad offerings. While every item placed in the Showcase has the potential to create a revolution in the automotive realm, the following were selected as the cream of the crop at the 2015 SEMA Show.
The annual SEMA Show houses 13 aftermarket business categories under one roof, creating a laboratory of ideas that allows entrepreneurs to visualize novel crossover applications, managers to share technologies, and businesses to benefit from blended techniques and best practices. This year’s Show attracted trendsetters from every category and allowed them to capture an unprecedented array of business possibilities—all ultimately joined together by the automotive culture that every attendee shares.