SEMA News—July 2015

By John Stewart

Restyling Market:

Showing a Healthy Uptick
SEMA Annual Market Report

The restyling market traditionally consists of interior and exterior accessories and includes products used to personalize vehicles that are not clearly assigned to other automotive specialty-equipment market niches.

According to the “2014 SEMA Annual Market Report,” almost 60% of all restyling products are accessory and appearance products—more than in any other niche. These typically include body kits—including wings, spoilers and fender flares—graphics packages; branded accessories such as shift knobs, mats and seat covers; and exterior dress-up items such as grilles and billet trim pieces. Restylers may also gravitate toward electronic upgrades such as alarms, remote-start kits or audio/visual enhancements.

Restylers also make significant use of wheels, tires and suspension products in order to personalize vehicles; these account for 22.8% of the parts associated with the segment. The remainder—about 18%—are considered performance products.

The majority of restyling parts are sold in specialty product/installation outlets (33.5%), automotive chains (17%) or through mail-order companies. This suggests that restyling parts are more likely to be purchased by a “do-it-for-me” customer rather than a hands-on racer or street-performance enthusiast.

The “2014 SEMA Annual Market Report” shows that sales in the restyling segment amounted to $4.48 billion in 2013 and showed 6.4% growth over the prior year.

A significant growth opportunity is accessorizing new vehicles still in the dealer showroom as a way to induce sales and add value. A healthy uptick in new-car sales over the last 12 months—especially truck and SUV sales—should translate into future opportunities for restylers and those who make accessories for new models. However, only 39% of new-vehicle buyers in 2013 were offered accessories by the dealer (per the “2011 Vehicle Accessory Market Study” by Foresight), and new-car dealers captured less than 5% of the $33 billion accessory market.

These and other insights are contained in the “2014 SEMA Annual Market Report,” prepared by the SEMA Market Research and available for member download free on

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