|The 2010 Media Trade Conference moved to a new location at the Radisson Suites in Covina, California. The format, however—short, informal meetings between manufacturers and media—remained the same.|
The 2010 Media Trade Conference, hosted by SEMA's Motorsports Parts Manufacturers Council (MPMC), coincided with one of the wettest weeks on record in Southern California—unfortunate for those who came from colder climes seeking a little West Coast sun and warmth.
For three days from January 19–21, 100 manufacturers met with editors and writers throughout the day in a series of half-hour meetings. For manufacturers it's a chance to put their newest products in front of the enthusiat media. For editors it's a way to nail down several months (in some cases an entire year's) worth of editorial projects.
SEMA News took the opportunity to meet with member companies to not only learn about their new products, but also the overall business climate. We were relieved to learn that most businesses are fairly optimistic about recovery in 2010, embracing a feeling that the worst has past.
Judging by the investment these companies have made in new-product development, from Edelbrock's venture into supercharging to Yokohama's "green" tires, 2010 looks to have gotten off on the right foot for enthusiasts and specialty-equipment businesses alike.
|AEM's Greg Nakano demonstrated the company's new gauges and discussed plans to release performance and diagnostic apps for Apple's iPhone.||Jason Snyder (right) and Smitty Smith discussed Edelbrock's new E-Force superchargers for the '08-'09 Corvette and 2010 Camaro SS. Kits for C6 Vettes and the Chrysler Hemi are in development.|
|Horace Mast of Mast Motorsports introduced several new valvetrain and fuel-system components, including a line of LS3 heads with 12-degree ports.||MagnaFlow's Ross Berlanga (left) and Robert Wilson highlighted the company's new 49-state direct fit cat converters for Camaro, Mustang and F-150.|
|Nate Shelton (left) and Dan Wu discussed new Hurst and B&M products, as well as the new Hurst Heritage series cars to be offered through only 100 exclusive dealers.||In between persuasive arguments for relocating to Chattanooga, Coker Tire's Corky Coker (right) and David Leach showed us the company's new Redlines and its Excelsior radial, offered in classic bias-ply look and sizes.|
|Tim Stewart (left), Lucio Tapia and Nestor Cabrera highlighted K&N's new hood scoops, 16-inch round filter and Power Kleen cleaner/degreaser.
||Mickey Thompson's Willy Woo (right) and Don Sneddon introduced the company's new apparel line for men and women, as well as the ET drag, Sportsman S/T and ET Street tires.|
|Ken Farrell (left) and Jim Davis of Professional Products brought the Powerjection Plus EFI, a fuel injection system with the look of a traditional carb.
||Steve Scheidker (left) and John Sonnefeldt of VP Racing Fuels discuss one of the most overlooked performance products: high-octane fuel. VP now offers its 50-state legal VP100.
|Baer Brakes' Todd Gartshore (left) and Ben O'Connor showed us some new calipers and talked about their recent move to a larger headquarters in Arizona.||Yokohama is committed to environmental responsibility, says Marketing Communications Director Fred Koplin. The dB super E-spec tire, which uses orange oil to to make the rubber more compliant and helps eliminate 80 percent of the petrochemicals used in its construction, is a long step in that direction.
Jay Jones with Toyo Tires was excited to tell us about Robby Gordon's 2009 SCORE series championship, a first for the tiremaker. Gordon raced to victory on Toyo's Open Country M/T-R tires.
|John Hotchkis of Hotchkis Sport Suspension showcased his new Mopar line (for '67-'76 A bodies), new 2010 Camaro subframe and components and new swaybars for BMW's 1-Series.
|Rich Barsamian from Grant shows us one of the company's Revolution Airbag steering wheels.
||Marc Lewis and Vic Wood (right) with Hedman Performance show us their new oil filter bypass adapter.
|Ken Wagstaff (left) and Brian Downard from Lokar show some of the company's new door handles and window cranks.
||Ernie Silvers from Egge Machine and Speed Shop highlights this remanufactured water pump.|
|Barry Meguiar explained the properties blended into the company's new Ultimate Wash & Wax.
||Art and Craig Morrison showcase their new A-arms.
|The Falken Tire crew, including (from left) Josh Spears, Nick Fousekis, James Yin and Mark Richter discussed the company's new all-terrain offering.
||Garrett's Kyle Snyder talked specifics about the new GTX-R turbochargers, which offer a claimed 10 percent gain in flow compared to traditional GT compressor wheel designs.
|Fidanza President Bob Scheid announced that his company has teamed with Zoom Performance Products to form Clutch Alliance.
||Kyle Fickler (left) and Gregory Smith of Weld Racing highlight one of the Kansas City-based wheelmaker's latest offerings.
|Skyjacker's Lee McGuire ran down the company's new gear, including 4- and 6-inch suspensions for 2009-2010 F-150.
||Dennis Overholser showed some new Painless Performance products, including a three-bolt flathead throttle body.|
|Advanced Clutch Technology's Tracie Nunez (left) and Cheralyn Smith with some of ACT's new clutch hardware.
||Ray Frescas shows off MSD Ignition's new 40th Anniversary Retro Box.
|Aeromotive president Steve Matusek accepts an award for service on the MPMC Select Committee from council director Jim Skelly.
||MPMC Select Committee member Rich Barsamian.
|Prestolite Performance's Ed "Blake" Burgy, MPMC Select Committee member.||Weld Wheels' Kyle Fickler.
|COMP Performance Group's John Menzler, 2009-2010 MPMC Select Committee member.
||2009-2010 Select Committee member Marla Moore of Hypertech.
|JET Performance Products' Dan Nicholas.||Ron Johnson of ADDCO.
|AIRAID's Chris Thompson, a 2009-2010 Select Committee member.||Hedman Performance's Vic Wood.
|The 2009-2010 MPMC Select Committee.||MPMC Chairman Bill Floyd presents the Chairman's Award to SEMA Chairman-Elect Scooter Brothers.
|Floyd with the Robert E. Petersen Award winner Karl Fredrickson from Speedway Illustrated.||A Wednesday evening panel at the Wally Parks NHRA Motorsports Museum featured industry leaders tackling future trends, product development, hybrids, and career training among other timely topics.|