Words by Tim Wong
This will be the final post of SEMA coverage.
One of the cars that really made an impression was the Chevy Sonic Boom. It’s a slighty upgraded model of the Chevy Sonic. This lower end consumer car is equipped with a turbocharger and already has quite the aftermarket support.
The Chevy booth had several Sonic Booms on displayed modified by different companies.
This one was equipped with a 4,000 watt audio system by Kicker® Performance Audio, custom 19” wheels, Z-Spec Concept Ground Effects, Grille and Spoiler, and an Anodized Flat Red paint job.
It is also fitted with a custom “Panic Button” on the front dash activates the Sonic Boom’s jet-engine inspired audio system and opens the trunk and back doors.
The Scion FR-S. This is supposed to be the successor to the AE86 which I’m highly suspicious of. Instead I treat it as a completely different and new car. There’s no doubt it’s a great looking car; however, I doubt the result will look like this here in the States. They have already released the images and videos showing the production version of the car for the Japanese market and several things I knew would be changed have been.
The center-lock wheels are never going to be put on the production model, even though it would be very cool to have.
The low, aggressive stance and aero trim was raised back up in the production model.
The lit rear Scion logo was not surprisingly changed to a traditional badge. One thing I hoped they would have kept was the tail lights. The car look completely different now that they changed them to be clear. Hopefully, the one for the States will be closer to the concept.
West Coast Customs Tron themed R8. For one, I don’t like that they called it a “Tron” theme car because it looks nothing like Tron. The glowing rims, glowing vents, a glowing back seat, and a bright chrome finish I guess is kind of cool it is own way though.
The lighting around the car changes too which I thought was kind of cool.
Underground Racing’s Twin Turbo Lamborghini Gallardo. Underground Racing has made internet fame from the impressive numbers the cars they are putting out and the insane hardware.
This Camaro sitting outside had a pretty consistent Transformers theme.
Bearing a Decepticon badge in the front grill and a KARR LED strip.
Even the steering wheel had a Decepticon badge.
In the center console sat the AllSpark.
The quote comes from Barricade, the Decepticon police Mustang.
The Itasha cars at SEMA were pretty controversial because that scene isn’t really big here in the States. Itasha is the modification of a car through graphics that depict anime or anime culture. Obviously, anime is a still niche culture in the States, but in Japan it is a big part of their lifestyle. Although the car scene here has since parted ways from vinyl graphics, it is still a acceptable customization to a car. Graphics are a great way to expres the personality of each owner and I find them no different from a racing livery.
Itasha is not like typical “Fast and the Furious” vinyls. Each car is decorated with graphics designed for that specific body and takes some thought into creating the artwork to work well with the car. This makes it more of an artistic expression through the medium of the vehicle.
Of course there’s a couple things I don’t particularly like on this car even though the wrap is excellent. The ridiculously large exhaust tip is over the top and the rally lights don’t mix well with the lower show car look.
This Itasha was brought out by Team Love Hate from Sacramento, CA. I know of them mostly because I make it my business to follow the Itasha scene here in the States and the rest of the world. They are car team that has a line up of just Itasha cars which is a pretty unique theme here.
This particular Infiniti G35 is wrapped with a Panty and Stocking theme. The wrap is pretty good and the outside theme is pretty consistent, but the interior is pretty different.
This Camaro was interesting all around. The car is highly similar to the RTR-X which is probably one of the reasons I found it appealing.
A pretty worked out interior and even had a iPad fitted in.
The LED tail lights are pretty nice touch too.
This concludes our SEMA coverage for 2011. Be sure to like us on Facebook and keep updated with future events.