2011 SEMA Show: Here Comes the Wild and Crazy, Again

SEMA project vehicle II

It's that time of year again, when the wildest and craziest cars and trucks gather in the city in the desert. The Specialty Equipment Manufacturers Association is a hotbed of creative and sometimes ridiculous automotive engineering.

All the major truck makers will be there, and many have been working with small, medium and large companies to make sure there will be plenty of eye candy on display.

But not everything at the show will be shiny bits and wasteful glamour. It's also about companies trying to sell products that real truck owners and automotive enthusiasts might need for their vehicles. 

What we have so far are just some of the early renderings and photos from different automakers of what they'll show next week when SEMA Show opens at the Las Vegas Convention Center. No doubt there will be many truck builders working late into the night to to make their deadline, and we'll be there to witness as many of the unveilings as possible.

The trade show is closed to the public, but we'll find the cool and interesting vehicles and products and bring you all the highlights. For now, this is just a preview with much more headed your way. 

SEMA SuperDutySuperlift II
SEMA Hulst Customs SD II

SEMA RAM 392 Quick Silver IISEMA Silverado_Realtree



Interesting, but the only vehicle here that looks like its anything useful is the Matchbox Fseries. Also, no more lowered trucks! useless.

The bottom Chevy looks useful

I Love SEMA!


I tried to give you some info relevant to your Taco on the Taco vs. Hilux post, which nobody has added to since. You might find it useful so here it is again.

@oxi, I once set up a winch system exactly as you describe, and even used forklift battery quick connects like you said. It worked great, and I had to use both ends often. Crew cab Duramax, got stuck all the time and there's just not always a tree handy in front of you in this highly agricultural part of the world.

What we did was cut up an old winch bumper and mounted the winch to it, then welded the piece of bumper with winch attached to a 2 inch receiver tube. That way I could simply slide the whole rig into wherever I needed it, be it back end receiver, or the front end receiver I added to the truck. You would be amazed how handy a front bumper receiver can be. I have also seen receivers on headache racks, where you could have a third winch plug for pulling boats onto trailers, pulling elk into the bed, etc. The last added bonus was that I could keep the winch inside the truck when it wasn't in use so it wouldn't get stolen. The only drawback is that the whole contraption was HEAVY.

Liking that Realtree Chevy. Much better than some stickers and camo on a Mossy Oak Ram.

That 392 Ram looks like its gonna be good as well.

Although I am not much for the Superduty, that second one is very sharp in my books. Kind of nice to see a different look than the bracket grille. The Matchbox one is just plain awesome as well.

I am guessing that the matchbox truck is for fighting forest fires. I am not a fan of lowered trucks. It just takes away the point of having a truck (especially a diesel) and says "look at me I have a useless truck!"


I agree 100% I see many lowered truck in my area and they are all Chevy's, go figure!

I agree

Although I'm not a fan of lowered trucks that black Ford looks Bad A$$. That Ram should be put into production tomorrow as a Ram SRT8.

The Matchbox truck is F-ing awesome.

I am not trying to give the Ram folks a hard time but that 5 speed now turned into 6 speed has no business being paired to a Hemi any Hemi. I dont see how Chysler of all companies found themselves like this I should be happy about an Ram SRT8 but im not. Can someone tell me why the new 8 speed isnt going to go anywhere near a Hemi

I'm not a fan of lowered trucks but I do like he looks of the F350. That big bezel without those stupid crossbars looks nice.
That Ram is super cool.
5.3 LOL - really? the 8 speed won't be paired to the hemi?
Maybe not at first.
The SuperLift F350 firetruck is a cool looking concept that would have a practical side to it.
I like the silver Chevy with blacked out bumper and grill. The gold accents are nice.
That looks the closest to what one of use mere mortals would drive.
Realtree truck camo......
where have I seen that idea before?

"I agree 100% I see many lowered truck in my area and they are all Chevy's, go figure!" - Frank,

And the worst part is, Frank and Lou blame the Chevy guys for starting all the trouble..

I like the looks of the Chevy the best. I don't like lowered trucks or anything outrageous. The problem still remains with the Chevy though, it's simply not a good off road hunting truck so this is a poor marketing exercise on their part. Notice the black lower ground effects to hide the low hanging frame that the Chevy has. Those tires would instantly void any GM factory warranty on the Chevy because it still lacks a real solid front axle. Those big tires would be a no go for their IFS.

These two things have been the downfall of Chevy 2500's and 3500's since the late 1980's. There's a good reason Ford took over the HD market and one needs to look no further than the Silverado's frame height and IFS. They need to go back to doing it the right way again if they plan on marketing this off road/outdoorsman type of stuff.

Ford would be in serious trouble if Chevy tucked up their frame and put a real front axle under there again.

@ Nick-Toons - no. I'd have to agree with you on this one.

Even though I am a Hot Wheels guy, I would not mind the Matchbox pickup.

I would like to see lowered pickups put through a hauling and towing test. You know, criteria that make a truck a truck. The results would be amusing, I am sure.


A guy that mud-dragged his Duramax Chevy gave me the idea...

And what people do not realize winches can be mounted in places other than the front or rear bumpers...

I recall MTVR's that we were building with winches on the sides of the truck facing front to back most likely to assist with moving gear, etc.. but for smaller vehciles just maybe to get unstuck...

The heavier bit is of concern but use those field carts to move it around for large game.

I agree the Matchbox F-series seems to fit the bill...

It looks like independent front, some solid ground clearance to match the weight, it looks awesome that is only if the front nozzle emits tear gas or pepper spray...

The Realtree Checy looks good but they need to improve the approach angle of that front bumper...

@ 5.3lol Chryslers plant that will build the 8spd tranny is still being retooled. The 8 spd's available now are being purchased from ZF which makes them very expensive. Once the plant is up and running we will see it used in most if not all Chrysler rear drive vehicles.

Actually oxi the undersides of the truck got cut off as the pic was Photoshopped. No rear diff either.

The JK pick-up is what I find most intreaging (if not a little annoying, since the Jeep P/U keeps getting postponed). I wonder where that will lead.

SEMA is just plain awesome for us gearheads. Even the useless dropped trucks deserve some respect for the builders and their skills

@oxi just wanted you to know that arrangement worked well for me and was reliable. Think about it, those connectors are utilized twice a day on forklifts.


Sorry Man, it's true. I see more lowered Chevy trucks/Suburbans than any other make. Just facts!


Let me guess, You're one of the morons standing there looking at em', right?

And people still wonder why there's lowered Cars and Trucks...

@unclebud - I know a few guys who have done the same thing. Works well. Sometimes discretion is the better part of valor. It is cheeper than buying and mounting 2 winches. I know Warn makes receiver hitch kits for their compact winches, and one could swap synthetic rope for steel cable. It would be lighter and safer as well.
I've looked at these set ups before. Great idea. I guess one could set something like what oxi suggested. I wouldn't want to bend the frame though.

yeah, like have you seen the differance in price on the 8 speed vs. 5 speed chargers? Then again 3-4 miles per gallon...

@Oxi - the Matchbox truck would not have IFS. I bet it will have portal solid axles. A few years ago I was at a heavy equipment trade show and there was an Unimog with a fire suppression body similar to this truck. They had opposite wheels up a ramp.Massive articulation for such a big machine. It was a cool looking machine.

As usual Frank is talking thru his a$$. Frank get off this site , you wreck everything.

Most lowered trucks here are the small trucks, and they are becoming fewer and fewer around. Now the big craze is lifting. Everything from small trucks, half tons and 3/4 and 1 tons. Sadly most of them are just bolt on drop brackets and do nothing to improve off road performance. And the guys that do think they have a monster truck now and try to use them find out very quickly how long their IFS will last with big tires and no axle/diff upgrade. What always literally makes me laugh uncontrollably is seeing an older caprice, LTD or other car lifted with 26' inch rims thumping down the road. Those are precious... Speaking of IFS buildups, did anyone see the Ecoboost that 4 wheel & Off Road built as its Ultimate Adventure rig this year? Every piece of the front end was custom built to hold up to 37's. Looked awesome and worked great according to the article, but can't help to imagine what a couple of narrowed 2 1/2 ton front Rockwell's would have done! Plus would have been a fraction of the cost if you were actually paying someone for it. I'm seriously considering making my 04 F150 a Beast with >44 inch tires, and 4 wheel steering using the narrowed 2 1/2 tons when I get ready to buy another truck. Maybe even a diesel swap, just to be really unique. I just keep thinking it would be better to go tube frame, and just try to use the body only. I still want the creature comforts.... Making my wallet hurt already. lol

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