Introduction to SEMA 2013: The Culture Shock

Once I got to Las Vegas, it was SEMA all around. Right at the doorstep, as soon as I got to my hotel I was greeted by this beautiful custom Nissan GTR parked up-front.

It was all business and I couldn't have been in a righter place at the righter time.  Bring on the show!

Next morning all fired up, but unfamiliar with shortcuts and how-to's I ended up wasting over an hour from a 3 mile drive from hotel, to remote overpriced parking lot, to finding the media center, but that meant going in through front door, which subsequently means passing through outside exhibition,

Where Ford has put on quite a show, featuring the absolutely mad Ford SVT Raptor drifting and catching air.

Going further and looking at things that I simply could not have imagined existing on this planet

... or could could not comprehend being featured in car show...

 I was simply stunned at the presentation and grand scale of the event.

And I haven't gotten inside yet!
Once I did, however and started making my way towards the media center, things were even more evident that at SEMA - anything goes.  

The media center was on the other side of the hall and after a long walk, I finally got there and got my badge, immediately feeling excited and in the mood for some camera work. 

But where do I begin? 

My original goal was to find cars and booths by Japanese companies.  More about this later, but as I was conducting my search...

...going between halls, I came across some inane driving done by professional drives behind the wheel of brand new C7 Corvette.  It was an incredible experience to witness this machine and observe how composed and insanely fast it goes around corners.  Chevrolet has created a masterpiece of a car.  Luckily, as SEMA being its home turf, there was no shortage of this hot North American exotic.

But first, my first encounter with Liberty Walk.  An absolutely no holds barred tuner from Nagoya who makes purists cry and individualists jump with joy.  I will do a separate feature dedicated to three cars that Liberty Walk has displayed on this show so stay tuned.

 Going outside the hall again, I stumbled across some serious stance statement.

Bottom line (pun intended)... When something is slammed at SEMA, it makes the earth shatter. 

Following down the line, JDM VIP inspired Infiniti M in unique purple paint sitting low and mean.

At this moment I was expecting Jay Leno to appear, start this 6 cylinder 14 Liter chain driven creation up and go for groceries.

In the back, the area connecting to LVH hotel was occupied by famous West Coast Customs who put on a show of their own.  Among the numerous Hip Hop performance, hot dogs, coffee, and lots and lots of people they brought around some fine customized rides to display.

Such as this Porsche Cayenne Turbo with sporty stance, light weight 5 spoke alloy wheels and low profile tires with Nissan GTR inspired body kit giving it a bit a JDM wagon look.  The car looks very aggressive but at the same time very clean,

And speaking of clean I could not walk by this face lifted 300C slammed on airbags, with massive rims with color matched white spokes.  Very tastefully done tints are also matched by blacked out headlights.  This is an example of how to create a proper VIP ride.

The dropped Range Rover will always be controversial, but SEMA is not exactly for purists, so anything goes, especially if it's done right.

Back on the inside it was hard to contain emotions and excitement when everything is done with such scale and attitude.

And when I stumbled upon something like this, I had to tell myself that it is indeed anything goes,

Especially if some passengers come along for a ride..

As signs of fatigue have started to show, there was only one thing left to do: set top lap time in a C7 Corvette in Gran Turismo.  

After the needed break, more extraordinary extravaganza.  No wonder these things are called "Monster Trucks"

Following the flow of crowd, I ended up outside again at another parking lot converted to exhibition.  Lots of USDM goodness out there from this Camaro SS with very unique paint job,

To this absolutely amazing Corvette Stingray.  Just look at the size of these tires! 

The unique and sometimes down right strange rides kept piling in.  A truly amazing sight.

The import scene was packed with unique rides as well. Later on I will provide more detailed coverage of the JDM scene at SEMA. 

As expected, mods on the most imports were mostly performance orientated.  The quad exhaust on this Hyundai Genesis Coupe is all business, as the car as a whole has been tweaked to shed off those precious time attack seconds.

Things were indeed very lively in the performance hall with all manufactures going to all extremes to market their goods.

And they certainly had the cars to prove their point. 

As you would expect, the show had no shortage of exotics, and that's going to be the topic of the next SEMA entry on this blog, so stay tuned.

Thank you for reading everyone, please come back soon for more SEMA material!




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