Thu, 04/29/2021 - 11:57
Raptor

While Ford just recently debuted the third-generation F-150 Raptor R back in February, they only provided a look at the tamer version with the 3.5L EcoBoost. The Raptor R is rumored to have a unique grille, beefier trailing arms, exclusive rims and, as everyone knows by now, the heart and soul of the GT500—the Predator 5.2L supercharged V8.

According to sources, the R will pump out around 725 hp to 750 hp, leaning more toward 750 hp, especially since the GT500 puts out 760 hp. One source said “Honestly, we had to counter RAM once we knew they installed the HellCat in the TRX.” The team is allegedly looking to beat the RAM TRX in every facet of the Raptor R.

The ’21 F-150 Raptor will be assembled at Ford’s Dearborn Truck Plant in Dearborn, Michigan, and will be available at dealers this summer. The Raptor R is expected to debut later this year with an on-sale date in 2022.

Raptor

Photo credit: Brian Williams, SpiedBilde

Thu, 04/29/2021 - 11:24

Compiled by SEMA Editors

John Thomas
John Thomas

John Thomas Named President and CEO of Toyo Tire U.S.A. Corp.

Toyo Tire U.S.A. Corp. has announced that John Thomas has been selected as its next president and CEO. He brings more than 30 years of automotive experience to the role, including extensive knowledge of the North American OEM and aftermarket landscape. In his most recent role, Thomas served as president and CEO of Webasto Charging Systems Inc. based in Monrovia, California. Thomas will report to Tatsuo Mitsuhata, chairman of the board of Toyo Tire U.S.A. Corp. All departments at Toyo Tires, including sales, finance, pricing and planning, marketing, and product planning and technical services will report directly to Thomas. He succeeds Roy Bromfield, who will retire in July after nearly nine years with Toyo Tires and 37 years in the tire industry. Bromfield will serve as an advisor to Toyo Tires at least through the end of 2021.

RANDYS Worldwide Promotes Neal Hollingsworth to Vice President of Marketing

Neal Hollingsworth
Neal Hollingsworth

RANDYS Worldwide has announced the promotion of Neal Hollingsworth to vice president of marketing. As a part of the executive leadership team and reporting to the President and CEO, Hollingsworth will continue to be responsible for activities related to RANDYS Worldwide and the network of brands across all sales and marketing channels. His marketing group leads RANDYS’ companies in web, analytics, digital, event and brand management, graphic design, motion graphics, sales channel support and development, customer marketing support and more. In addition to RANDYS internal work, Hollingsworth’s group functions as a marketing agency to customers, building brand and sales support programs within their market area. He began with RANDYS in September of 2010 and continues to place emphasis on brand development along all channels of the business.

Pep Boys to Award $100,000 in Scholarships to Aspiring Automotive Technicians

Pep Boys invites those studying to become technicians to apply for one of the 15 scholarships available in the annual Find Your Drive scholarship program. Scholarships awarded through the program this year will total $100,000 to celebrate the company’s centennial and continue the “Race to 2026” initiative, designed to recruit talented technicians in the automotive industry and close America’s skills gap.  

This year’s program will include five $10,000 scholarships to be awarded to qualified students studying to become professional automotive technicians in major metro areas: Houston, Los Angeles, Orlando, Philadelphia and Puerto Rico. An additional 10 $5,000 scholarships will be awarded to qualified students studying to become professional automotive technicians in other areas in the U.S.

To be eligible for consideration for a scholarship, students must be pursuing an automotive technician degree or certification through a full- or part-time college or trade school program and meet certain academic requirements, provide a written or video essay and submit two letters of recommendation. The application window will remain open until Friday, May 21, at 12:00 a.m. (EDT), and winners will be notified by Tuesday, June 1. Students can begin the application process and find additional details and eligibility requirements at www.pepboys.com/findyourdrive.

Retrac
Dan Walmsley

Retrac Group Announces New CEO, Company Structure

Retrac Group has announced a structural change designed to increase growth and enhance the security and prospects of its employees. The company’s ownership has been transferred from the Carter family to an Employee Ownership Trust (EOT) structure, making the 115-strong workforce the company’s beneficiaries. Experienced automotive and motorsports executive Dan Walmsley has been appointed as CEO. He will lead the group’s two divisions—Retrac Productions Ltd. and Retrac Composites Ltd. Long-standing co-owner and Retrac Productions Managing Director Andy Carter has been appointed as chairman of Retrac Group. Walmsley arrives at the company from VentilatorChallengeUK Consortium. Prior, he was the motorsports director at McLaren Automotive from 2016-20, having been team principal at FIA World Sportscar Championship entrant Strakka Racing.

Have some company news you would like to share? Let us know and the news may appear in an upcoming issue of SEMA eNews. Send your items for consideration to editors@sema.org.

Thu, 04/29/2021 - 11:21

Compiled by SEMA Editors

Indy 500 Scores Victory for Racing Industry

The motorsports industry scored a major victory on April 21 with the announcement that Indianapolis Motor Speedway (IMS) will host up to 135,000 fans during this year’s Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge. The 105th running of the iconic event will take place May 30, and comes on the heels of the city of Indianapolis successfully hosting the NCAA Tournament, March 18–April 5. Indianapolis will also welcome the world’s premier event for motorsports professionals—the PRI Trade Show—on December 9–11 at the Indiana Convention Center in downtown Indianapolis.

NMRA
The Holley NMRA Ford Nationals has announced an All-Female
True Street category will compete at its upcoming Ohio event.

NMRA Announces All-Female True Street Set for Ohio

The Holley NMRA Ford Nationals has announced an All-Female True Street category will compete at its upcoming Ohio event. Presented by Baer Brake Systems, All-Female True Street will take place during the NMRA Ford Performance Nationals at Summit Motorsports Park in Norwalk, Ohio, June 10-13. The new class will follow the same format as the QA1 True Street category with its 30-mile drive and three consecutive runs down the quarter-mile. NMRA officials will rank competitors based on ET, rewarding the overall winner, overall runner-up, and the quickest average times in the nine-second, 10-second, 11-second, 12-second, 13-second, 14-second and 15-second zones. The All-Female True Street category is open to any Mustang or Ford, car or truck, whether the competitor owns it or not. All True Street rules require DOT tires, and all vehicles must be registered and insured.

Formula DRIFT Partners to Help at-Risk Youth

Formula DRIFT has announced a partnership with Acceler8—a California-based automotive education and workforce development program—as part of ongoing community outreach. The Acceler8 program pairs volunteer automotive professionals and law-enforcement officers with eligible youth to help provide support and stable adult role models. The program aims to help youth complete school, acquire skills and prepare them for jobs in the wide automotive sector. As part of the new partnership, Formula DRIFT will help Acceler8 reach more communities around the nation, thanks in part to the popularity of the drifting series with a younger automotive enthusiast audience. As the education partner for Formula DRIFT, Acceler8 will invite youth from local communities throughout the 2021 national tour. The students will receive an up-close look at professional drift teams and the automotive industry while speaking to crews, drivers and FD personnel. They will also have the opportunity to watch their favorite drivers perform during the FD weekend. Acceler8 will also be on-hand at events to demonstrate its automotive educational programs to all attendees, along with highlighting the importance of high-school auto-shop classes. The 2021 Formula DRIFT PRO Championship kicks off on May 7–8, at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta.

For more racing news, visit Performance Racing Industry’s (PRI) website.

Thu, 04/29/2021 - 11:13

By SEMA Editors

SEMA News 35 Under 35 2020The September 2021 issue of SEMA News will highlight rising stars in the automotive aftermarket industry who are age 35 and younger. If you know a leader in that age range as of September 1, 2021—whether they are in manufacturing and design, marketing, retail, events and media, or distribution—we would like to hear from you.

Many SEMA members are currently working with creative young professionals who are already industry trailblazers. They may have played key roles in leveraging new and emerging technologies with a traditional automotive aftermarket business to expand company reach, improve product development, energize marketing efforts or upgrade customer interaction.

They could be budding talents at an established company, entrepreneurs building their own brands or innovators who have launched companies that might become big names in the future. What they all will have in common are fresh ideas, enthusiasm, charisma and the drive to succeed.

SEMA News looks for candidates drawn from diverse industry segments who are already making a significant impact through their leadership within their organizations or businesses. Entrepreneurship, commitment, insight, innovation, integrity, responsibility, demonstrated skill, involvement and success within the marketplace weigh heavily in the decision-making process. We’ll honor the winners in the September issue of SEMA News and on www.sema.org.

Nominate a candidate now for the 2021 SEMA News 35 Under 35. Nominations are due May 31.

Thu, 04/29/2021 - 11:05

By SEMA Editors

SEMA eNews highlights SEMA-member companies’ websites weekly through the Hot Links to Cool Sites section. SEMA members: To be included in Hot Links to Cool Sites, email your company name and website to enews@sema.org. Note: Make sure to include “Hot Links” in the subject line of the email.

Thu, 04/29/2021 - 11:04

By SEMA Editors

 

Latest Jobs Added to SEMA Career Center

 

Are you hunting for a new job? The SEMA Career Center has a comprehensive listing of automotive-related job openings around the country. Here are some of the latest jobs posted to the website.

Production Scheduler
Cognito Motorsports is hiring a production scheduler responsible for planning the production of multiple finished manufactured and assembled products within the constraints of demand plans, resource availability and plant capacity. This position will work closely with the manufacturing operations manager, procurement specialist and sales manager to plan, coordinate and implement the daily and long-term production plans to support the company’s demand and growth requirements. A bachelor’s degree with manufacturing, business analytics or logistics/supply-chain course study and a strong background in a variety of inventory management concepts, practices and procedures are required.

Product Content Auditor
MagnaFlow is hiring a product content auditor responsible for maintaining the integrity of the company’s product data to be used on Magnaflow.com and its retailer websites. This role requires an intense attention to detail and understanding of product content. Candidates must have experience with ACES and PIES automotive standards and basic automotive knowledge.

Content Creator
Quadratec is hiring a content creator who is an avid car and off-road enthusiast and can create profound content and deliver colorful and motivating write-ups that the four-wheeling and off-roading community appreciates and enjoys. This candidate enjoys working with Bronco and/or off-roading vehicles and will create the best-in-class engagement experience for Quadratec’s newest brand of products.

Thu, 04/29/2021 - 11:02
Thu, 04/29/2021 - 11:01

 

 

 

By SEMA Editors

SEMA Show 2021 ReconnectExhibit at the 2021 SEMA Show and shine the spotlight on your company in front of tens of thousands of qualified buyers looking for the best that the automotive specialty-equipment market has to offer.

In addition to buyers, the Show also attracts thousands of traditional media and social-media influencers ready to let the rest of the world know about your products and applications, opening up even more sales opportunities well after the Show concludes.

Access SEMA's worldwide network and create more opportunities to sell. Be there to reconnect at the 2021 SEMA Show, Tuesday-Friday, November 2-5, Las Vegas.

Reserve your spot for 2021 at www.SEMAShow.com/buyabooth.

Below are key dates that SEMA Show exhibitors are encouraged to mark on their calendars.

  • The Exhibitor Services Manual (ESM) will be live in May. The ESM contains all of the forms and applications required to prepare for the Show: feature vehicles, new products, booth vehicles, celebrity appearances, etc.
  • The Exhibit Space Rental Application and deposit are due May 7.
  • Dates for the SEMA Show Space Selection: June 7-23

For additional information about exhibiting at the SEMA Show, visit www.SEMAShow.com/exhibitor.

Thu, 04/29/2021 - 10:59

By SEMA Editors

The following candidates are vying for a seat on the SEMA Board of Directors:

Chairman-elect (one open seat)

  • Kyle Fickler – Director, Driven Racing Oil
  • Les Rudd – President, Bob Cook Sales

Distributors/Retailers (two open seats):

  • Larry Montante – Vice President, Keystone Automotive Operations
  • Brian Rowland – GM, Parts & Accessories, Walmart
  • Steve Whipple – Director, Jegs High Performance

Manufacturers (two open seats):

  • Ian Lehn – Founder, BOOSTane
  • Kim Pendergast – CEO/Owner, Magnuson Superchargers
  • Brian Reese – President/CEO, The Retrofit Source

Service (one open seat):

  • Lindsay Hubley – Managing Partner, Lodestone Events
  • Jim Liaw – President/Co-Founder, Formula Drift Holdings

Voting will take place online between May 11–25, and is open to current SEMA-member companies. Votes must be cast by each company’s primary contact. Details on the upcoming election will be sent to the member company’s designated primary contact beginning April 30. Winners will be announced by May 28.

Thu, 04/29/2021 - 10:58

By Ashley Reyes

Virtual EducationSEMA Virtual Education remains committed to empowering industry professionals by sharing innovative strategies, information and learning through new and engaging webinars.

Mark your calendars for the following upcoming webinars and stay tuned to SEMA eNews as additional sessions are announced throughout the year. For a comprehensive library of upcoming and on-demand sessions that members can access anytime, visit www.sema.org/virtual-education.

Tuesday, May 4—SEMA Virtual Town Hall

This Virtual Town Hall will provide SEMA members with the latest industry news and details on association programs impacting the specialty-equipment market. Led by SEMA President and CEO Chris Kersting, the program features association leaders as they share details about the 2021 SEMA and PRI Trade Shows, EPA emissions compliance, a new membership program that unites the motorsports industry and plans for a new SEMA Garage in the Detroit area.

Register here.

Friday, May 7—Sharing Their Wisdom
Series: C-Suite Peer Insights Series, powered by the SBN
Track: Industry Segments, Powered by SEMA Councils and Networks

Geared to help those in executive roles, or who are on the path to an executive position, this webinar will allow participants to tap into the knowledge and expertise of women who broke through the glass ceiling and have discovered, through their own personal trial and error, how to succeed. Seeing their success today, you’d think it was easy, but their stories will inspire and motivate women in their professional careers.

Register here.

Tuesday, May 11—The Growing Diversity of the Light Truck Market, Powered by TORA
Series: SEMA Industry Insight Series
Track: Trends & Research

Learn about the light-truck vehicle landscape and emerging trends and opportunities during this webinar presented by the SEMA Market Research team. Attendees will receive important information to help understand the light-truck market, detailed analyses of main truck segments, and an overview of new trends and shifts in overlanding, off-road, diesel and more.

Register here.

Wednesday, May 12—Facebook Live Chat Featuring Ben Schaffer, Presented by SEMA YEN

Join founder of Bulletproof Automotive and Unplugged Performance Ben Schaffer as he shares his insight on Tesla vehicles, EV tuning and the future of performance car culture. Dedicated to improving every aspect of the driving and Tesla ownership experience, Schaffer is highly experienced in the world of car tuning and modifying cars in the electrical vehicle space. Join the chat to get your questions answered in live time.

Location: SEMA Facebook page

Thursday, May 13—Reducing Micromanagement and Increasing Employee Self-Sufficiency
Series: Team Management Series, Powered by the SBN
Track: Industry Segments, Powered by SEMA Councils and Networks

Creating an environment that avoids micromanagement can be an effective way to improve trust within a team. During this live webinar, managers and supervisors will learn how to increase the confidence, efficiency and productivity of their departments and set their team up for success to ensure they are comfortable with projects, check ins, and deadlines.

Register here.

Thursday, May 20—More Than Just Jeeping: Other Ways People Go Off-Road
Track: Industry Segments, Powered by SEMA Councils and Networks

Learn how to capitalize on the growing interest in the outdoor and backcountry lifestyle by taking part in this webinar presented by the SEMA Truck and Off-Road Alliance (TORA). Participants will learn about the evolving landscape of the off-road market, the different ways people are going off road and related products that businesses may want to consider to increase sales.

Register here.