SEMA Vehicles Demonstrate What’s Possible in Future Cars

Ignition by Webasto Thermo & Comfort North America

We are in the midst of the 2015 Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) Show running in Las Vegas. It’s the greatest collection of aftermarket parts and new carmakers anywhere in the world. Some great vehicles are presented at this show—some are simply outlandish, while others showcase what could be possible in future new cars, trucks, and crossovers.

Ignition Ford Edge
Okay, so normally a crossover wouldn’t get your blood pumping, but the Ignition by Webasto brings luxury and performance together to make the Ford Edge, dare we say it, stunning? This Edge Sport features more aggressive handling while offering a comfort level associated with high-end luxury rides. It features carbon fiber components and performance-enhancing parts. It also boasts more power and tighter handling while including Webasto Thermo technology, which gives it a more luxurious feel. Our favorite feature would be the AG Luxury 22-by-9-inch wheels wrapped around Toyo Proxes rubber.

Toyota R-Tuned Sienna Minivan
2015 SEMA Toyota Sienna R-TunedEver since I rode in a 15-passenger Econoline van with Bob Bondurant at the helm, I’ve been fascinated by otherwise bland vehicles that can do special things. Case in point would be the Toyota R-Tuned Sienna Minivan.

Toyota Technical Center collaborated with championship-winning performance shop DG-Spec to modify a stock Sienna SE “Swagger Wagon” with performance tires, wheels, brakes, double-adjustable shocks with racing springs, and a clutch-type limited-slip differential to deliver radically enhanced performance. According to Toyota, even with the Sienna’s stock 3.5-liter V6 engine and 6-speed automatic transmission, it outpaced a 6.2-liter V8 Camaro SS on the test track. At the Streets of Willow Springs, the Sienna R-Tuned turned a blistering 1:27 lap time, beating a 6.2-liter V8 Camaro by a full second around the 1.7-mile course.

Ridgeline Baja Race Truck
Ridgeline Baja Race TruckThe Honda Ridgeline Baja Race Truck, while built to take on the Baja 1000 later this month in Mexico, has important real-world implications. Honda suggests it gives clues to the styling direction of the 2017 Honda Ridgeline pickup.

According to Honda, key design cues drawn from the highly anticipated 2017 Honda Ridgeline can be seen in the front fascia, hood, roof, bed, and side profile. When it goes on sale in the first half of 2016, it’ll be a sharp-looking truck. It also won’t have a twin-turbo, 550-horsepower V6, but something tells me you could find one on the aftermarket if you had enough money.

Dodge Challenger AWD
The Dodge Challenger GT AWD Concept is among the Mopar-modifiedYes, you read that right. For SEMA, Mopar has created a one-of-a-kind Dodge Challenger with all-wheel drive. It makes sense only when you consider the Dodge Charger is available with all-wheel drive, so why not the Challenger, too?

The vehicle’s 5.7-liter Hemi V8 engine uses an AWD package to power all four wheels, paired with an 8-speed transmission. The 5.7-liter engine is upgraded with the Scat Pack 3 Performance Kit, which delivers a boost of up to 75 horsepower and an additional 44 lb-ft of torque. It’s fast and holds the road in corners. What could be better?

Fiat 500X Mobe
The Fiat 500X Mobe is among the Mopar-modified vehicles showcaseI’m including the Fiat 500X Mobe just because it’s named after a kite-surfing trick. As in I didn’t know there were enough kite-surfing tricks that they had their own names.

Another reason to include it is because it demonstrates what can be done with off-the-shelf Mopar products in a beach-going theme. Among them is a Mopar roof rack, featuring special Mopar logo graphics, working in concert with side rails to create a transport for a kiteboard or other recreational equipment.

BMW M2 Coupe

BMW M2This isn’t so much a look at what’s been done in terms of concepts. Rather, BMW has introduced aftermarket parts to make the already fast BMW 2 Series coupe even more special.

The BMW M Performance Parts include a rear spoiler in carbon fiber finish, the newly developed BMW M Performance suspension, and the sports exhaust with flap system, with tailpipe trim elements in carbon fiber.

There’s also a BMW M Performance steering wheel with an Alcantara cover and an open-pore carbon fiber trim element, a BMW M Performance gear-selection lever complete with trim element for the M twin-clutch transmission, a BMW M Performance center console combining carbon fiber and Alcantara, and pedal covers in stainless steel.

Toyota Tundrasine
2015 SEMA Toyota TundrasineOkay, so not all SEMA vehicles will ever see the light of day. Frankly, I can’t figure out why Toyota even built the Tundrasine (but secretly I’m glad it did). It’s a pickup truck turned into a limousine.

The vehicle started out as a Toyota Tundra 1794 Edition 4×4 CrewMax 5.7-liter V8 pickup. Toyota then transformed that full-size Tundra into a larger-than-life-size limousine. The Tundrasine is over 26 feet in length and has a wheelbase of 235.9 inches.

Among its other attributes, it is 90 inches longer than a standard 4×4 Tundra CrewMax. It also weighs 2,288 pounds more at a whopping 7,978 pounds. It also has eight doors and a standard pickup bed, because you don’t want to load your limousine down with peat moss.

-Keith Griffin

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Used Ford Edge
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