Sometimes people come together for a special cause and create something extraordinary. SEMA Garage, WD-40 and many others in the industry came together in order to create a custom ’66 Ford Bronco that will be auctioned off to benefit Childhelp later in the year. Childhelp is an organization dedicated to closing the cycle of child abuse in the United States by helping victims and those at risk.
The New Products Showcase is routinely the number-one destination for SEMA Show buyers and media, giving participating exhibitors a distinct advantage in getting their products out to the world. The 2019 SEMA Show surpassed 3,000 products across 16 different categories, including street-performance, racing, off-roading, mobile-electronics and exterior and interior products. Three of the 16 categories were won by first-time exhibitors, indicating that the industry is healthy and continuing to grow.
Each year before the start of the SEMA Show, exhibitors are polled on the new vehicles that, to their minds, represent the best business opportunities for customization and accessorization via the aftermarket for the coming year. Vehicles are chosen in five distinct classes, and the winners are announced ahead of the start of the Show. This year’s announcement was made on Monday, November 4, before the first day of the 2019 SEMA Show. The winners are:
As the world’s premier automotive trade show, the SEMA Show reflects the $44 billion automotive aftermarket, bringing together every segment of the industry—from hot rods to mobile electronics and collision repair. And if this year’s Show is any indication, the industry is alive, well and poised for another great year.
SEMA is governed by a Board of Directors who volunteer their time to provide leadership and guidance to the organization. Board members are nominated and elected by the association’s membership at large. Directors serve a three-year term, while the chairman serves for two years immediately after completing a two-year term as chairman-elect. The current Board was inaugurated at the 2019 SEMA Installation & Gala, held July 26, 2019, at the Anaheim Marriott, Anaheim, California.
As OEMs roll out an expanding array of advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS) on their new vehicles, the latest technologies are proving to be a mixed bag for the aftermarket. On one hand, they open new product channels for the industry’s suppliers and retailers. On the other, they present a challenge to collision-repair, customization and installation shops, all of which must contend with the safe functionality of ADAS components on completed projects.
We spoke with SEMA’s council and network leaders to find out what initiatives they are working on, what’s currently trending in their markets and what they envision the future might hold, and also the challenges they face. Common themes include fighting government overreach, the continued growth of advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) and expanding youth outreach programs.
In a marked shift from previous years, hackers are much more likely these days to be bent on stealing your computing processing power than embedding ransomware or other malware in your network, according to a March 2019 report from IBM (www.ibm.com/security/data-breach/threat-intelligence). That’s because it’s much safer for hackers to simply steal your computing processing power over the internet—and use it for mining crypto currencies such as Bitcoin—than to get involved in planting other criminal software on business and corporate networks, according to the report’s authors.
SEMA Battle of the Builders (BOTB) gives opportunities to builders worldwide to showcase their talents. Industry legends and up-and-coming builders go head-to-head as they exercise their skill and creativity at the industry’s premier event. Many of the builders spend countless hours on their creations. Some work in teams; some work by themselves. The finished products end up being as unique as the builders themselves, reflecting the talent and originality of the custom car industry.
Hyundai Veloster RM19 Mid-Engine Prototype: It’s expected to be a compact sports car, possibly in the vein of a Porsche 718 Boxster/Cayman.
Mustang-Inspired Mach E Performance EV: Previous sightings of Ford’s EV showed the vehicle in mule form, wearing the body of a last-generation Ford Escape.
Porsche’s 820hp Über-Panamera: The Über-Panamera will get 820 hp out of a tuned version of the existing engine.