Grand Highlights of The Grand 2018 SEMA Show @semashow #sema #sema2018 @wheelsandheelsmag / Py Pai, Editor-in-Chief
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SEMA, The Grand Car Aftermarket Products and Services Event

SEMA has provided an incredible market place for multi-industry streams of all things of automobile aftermarket product and services. It's the annual event that we cannot miss and excited about to discover what are on the horizon and cool.

With the recent court ruling on freeing DRM control on aftermarket parts, we can only see a great expansion of the industry and the show.  This sends a great signal to the whole market that the small business entrepreneurs, ventures, and end consumers can take care as well as innovate of the automobile things they love and are expert about.

A Bigger and Grander Show

This year's SEMA event we see as the bigger and more exhibit space event compared to the past years. One of the parking lots, the Platinum lot has been converted into a driving experience tracks. Together with AAPEX show at the Sands Convention Center SEMA has firmly established as the most sought-after and most important automobile event of the year.

The South, The Central and The North Halls, Plus Performance Pavilion and Outside Lots

SEMA carries the tradition of having three show hall main exhibit places the South Hall contains most of the wheels and tires companies which showcased with many exotic and luxury cars as well as many shiny wheels and rugged tires.

At the central Hall it's more about the cars interiors and the modifications that make cars go not only smoothly but also with more muscles and with more exotic wares. It's almost like a playground with many cool components for builders and hot modders to try different things to make their cars stand out from the Pierce.

At the North Hall you would see a lot of lifestyle cares products including the paint protection and car audios and tools and maintenance equipment. And all side the convention halls there was the Performance Pavilion that many of the newcomers were vying for a place of presents in the SEMA show.

Filling all the gaps and crevices of the show space and parking lots and driveways among the convention center, were the exotic display cars and wheels.  Also there were tracks that demonstrated how trucks can fly in the sky as well as housing loud screeching noises of drifting cars.

Attention Grabbing Promotions

There are a lot of promotional activities including celebrity builders and drivers signing their autographs as well as promotional personalities and promotional events across all the schedule of the show. They're all very exciting and catered to their potential customers of their liking of the celebrities and personalities.

Arrays of New Products

At the new product showcase rooms you will see a lot of innovations and newly introduced products to the market coming from big companies as well as to the new startups. The new products showcase included a wide range of car-related products, from front bumpers to rear end exhaust systems, and from the inside of off the car interior to the outside paint and emblem modifications, and of course many things inbetween. It's all about Innovations and product introductions that excited many people at the show.

Interesting Phenomenon 

There is one interesting phenomenon at the show.  Over the years we have seen companies come and go but most players stay at the SEMA show. However this year we're seeing a trend that Chinese companies are moving upwards to the front of the convention center. This is due to the exhibit booth seniority that they have exhibited in seem up for a period of time so that they can gain the sonority at the front.  Obviously persistence paid off for these companies.  It also signals the Chinese wave coming from the outside into the North America market space and worldwide presence.

Awards and Trophies, The Proud and Hard-Won Recognitions

And throughout the show there are Awards being given too many accomplished and innovative companies as well as persons.

Here are some of the Awards being given at this year's SEMA.

SEMA Vehicles of The Year 

On Monday, October 29, 2018, SEMA announced the vehicles of the year. The coveted awards went to:

  • SEMA Car of the Year: Ford Mustang
  • SEMA Truck of the Year: Ford F-Series
  • SEMA 4x4/SUV of the Year: Jeep Wrangler
  • SEMA Sport Compact of the Year: Ford Focus
  • SEMA Powersports Vehicle of the Year: Polaris RZR Turbo S

SEMA Industry Awards

Winners of the prestigious 2018 SEMA Awards are:

  • SEMA Person of the Year: Melanie Hellwig-White - President, Hellwig Suspension Products
  • Gen-III Innovator Winner: Jon Pulli - CEO, Turn 14 Distribution
  • SEMA Rep Agency of the Year: Bob Cook Sales
  • SEMA Distributor of the Year: Turn 14 Distribution
  • SEMA Manufacturer of the Year: Aeromotive Inc.

Battle of the Builders

With more than 300 vehicles entered, this year’s SEMA Battle of the Builders contest was one of the most competitive. In case you missed it, Kyle Tucker took the honor this year as the overall Battle of the Builders winner. Following are all of the category winners:
  • Overall Winner, Battle of the Builders: Kyle Tucker, 1969 Chevy Camaro
  • Hot Rod: Kyle Tucker, 1969 Chevy Camaro
  • Truck/Off-Road: Eddie Pettus, 1932 Willys Aircraft Refueling Truck
  • Sport Compact: Rod Nielsen, 1972 Mazda R100
  • Young Guns: Kyle Kuhnhausen, 1972 Nissan 240z

Best New Products

The Best New Product Award winners were announced on the opening day of the SEMA Show. Find the full list and runners-up here.

  • Collision Repair & Refinish Product Winner: ITW Evercoat, OPTEX Color Changing Body Filler and Putty
  • Engineered New Product Winner: Flaming River Industries Inc., VDOG variable angle gear
  • Exterior Accessory Product Winner: Lund International, AVS Aeroskin LightShield Hood Protector
  • Interior Accessory Product Winner: Speed Dawg Shift Knobs, Dodge Drag Pack 1320 Racing Stripe Shift Knob
  • Merchandising Display Winner: Dee Zee Inc., Rotary Running Board Display
  • Mobile Electronics Product Winner: AAC, Trigger 4 Plus
  • Off-Road/4-Wheel Drive Product Winner: Rancho/DynoMax, Rancho JL Wrangler Sport Suspension System
  • Packaging Design Winner: Pedal Commander, Pedal Commander Performance Throttle Response Controller
  • Performance-Racing Product Winner: ProCharger Supercharger Systems, ProCharger CrankDrive™ Supercharger Gear Drive
  • Performance-Street Product Winner: Turbosmart, Kompact-EM Universal Blow Off Valve
  • Powersports Product Winner: Warn Industries Inc., VRX 45-S
  • Street Rod/Custom Car Product Winner: Flaming River Industries Inc., VDOG variable angle gear
  • Tire and Related Product Winner: Cooper Tire, Cooper Discoverer AT3 4S
  • Tools & Equipment Product Winner: Newarc Tech LLC, NewArc SRS-3 Portable Wheel Straightening System                
  • Van/Pickup/Sport-Utility Product Winner: Brandmotion, Radar Blind Spot System with Cross Traffic Detection    
  • Wheel and Related Product Winner: Wheel Pros, Asanti Wheels AB-816

It's An Awesome Show That We Look Forward to Next Year Already

Overall it is such a critical event that it is the annual ritual for many people to attend and to learn what the new industry are shaping as well as a driving force of more customization and more self care of car maintenance for car lovers and business aftermarket ventures.

Wheels, Tires, and Showperson-ship 


Car Care Explosion


Exotic, Import and Hot, Rods


The Endless Car Maintenance Possibilities and Innovations


Sounds and Furies Abound


Outdoor Sunny and Thrilling Experiences


New Products


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