This year’s staging of the Specialty Equipment Market Association, popularly known as SEMA, flung its doors to an estimated 200,000 plus attendees, as after-market enthusiasts from the World over formed a beeline to the Las Vegas Convention Center on October 30.
The 52-year old automotive show consistently attracts throngs of attendees to see what the aftermarket industry has to offer for the incoming year. According to SEMA organizers, there were a total of 2,400 exhibiting companies representing 140 countries. Products ranged from nuts and bolts, tires, suspension systems, in-car audio-video equipment and up to custom built vehicles.
SEMA is the second-largest convention in Las Vegas behind the Consumer Electronics Show (CES), which is owned and produced by the Consumer Technology Association. And it is the largest formal gathering of automotive enthusiasts in the world, with 1,500 vehicles displayed inside and outside the North, Central and South Halls.
There is a reason SEMA promotes the show as “the premier automotive specialty products trade event in the world.” More than 3,000 products were displayed in the New Products Showcase alone. Throughout the convention center, there were many more. For example, it’s hard to “display” new software in a showcase!
The SEMA Show grew from humble beginnings. The organization sponsored the first SEMA Show in January 1967, sharing the profits with organizer Robert Petersen. SEMA assumed full control of the show in 1982.