|Twenty-seven manufacturing companies from various market segments, ranging from
wheels and tires, racing and performance and mobile electronics, came to check out the ’12 Scion iQ at SEMA headquarters on March 15.
The SEMA Measuring Session program provides a first look at new or modified vehicle models before they are launched. These sessions create an opportunity for SEMA members to work first-hand with the OEs on a new vehicle, allowing them to take accurate measurements and gather specific data they need to design and develop aftermarket parts and accessories. This exclusive member benefit is offered to manufacturing companies as a seamless way of keeping their product lines current.
According to Bill Wolf, SEMA senior director, OEM relations, the measuring sessions not only benefit the members but also the OEs. The program serves as a platform for “the OEs to allow the members to develop and market the aftermarket parts and accessories simultaneously with the launch of the vehicle. Measuring sessions allow for better aftermarket products to be developed, with fit and finish more like an OE finish. Further, the program stimulates sales in the marketplace when people know there are going to be more accessories available so that they can distinguish their vehicle as a reflection of their personality.”
The recent ’12 Scion iQ measuring session, held March 15, at the SEMA headquarters in Diamond Bar, California, attracted 27 manufacturing companies from various market segments, ranging from wheels and tires, racing and performance, mobile electronics and others. Members had a chance to collect accurate measurements and data on the new model that goes on sale this summer.
Daniel La Blanc, marketing manager of OEM Audio +, attended the measuring session and shared his insight: “It provides irrefutable first-hand knowledge of how the final production vehicles are going to be in terms of components, finishes and dimensions, just to name a few. It is as close to production as you can get," he said.
"Specific to OEM Audio +, we can look into factory harness connectivity and its routing. We are also able to scout for feasible mounting locations for our upgraded OEM amplifiers and subwoofer enclosures. Third and most importantly, SEMA sessions provide us with full, unhindered access to all the speaker mounting locations from which we can document dimensions, mounting hole patterns and envelopes available for each speaker location.”
For Richard Ornelas, product development engineer at Myron & Davis, the session provides him with “a forecast and even technical and mechanical information Myron & Davis needs to stay ahead in the aftermarket navigation/mobile entertainment industry. The session also helps us decide on certain projects we may want to venture on.”
Sessions are typically held three to six months prior to the launch of the vehicle by the OE so that the manufacturers have enough time to design, manufacture and market their products in time for the launch. SEMA manufacturing members are encouraged to participate in future sessions.
“Having the session for next year's car models today affords you the luxury of applying lessons learned straight into your current product offerings, future ones and minimizing the impact of planned obsolescence into your products' lifecycle simply because you are aware of impending changes,” said La Blanc, emphasizing that the sessions lead to ways to find solutions ahead of non-SEMA members.
Several more measuring sessions have been scheduled in the upcoming months. The ’12 Volkswagen Passat and Jetta sessions will take place on April 4–5 at Volkswagen of America, Ontario Learning Center in Ontario, California. The ’12 Hyundai Veloster session will be held on April 12 at Hyundai Motor America Service Center in Fountain Valley, California. Register for these sessions here.