SHOW: SEMA 2017 HYPE // What is the SEMA Award?

SEMA Award Banner

It’s not what I Thought.

Typically, in the car world we live in, an award goes to a car, bike or truck that is modified or restored with greater attention to detail than anything else at a show. Each event culminates in an award for work done, you don’t get the award for work you’re going to do. On that ideal, I just immediately assumed the SEMA Award goes to the most beautiful and well customized car on the floor. It’s an assumption. What other reason would be behind the SEMA Award?

That’s a dead wrong assumption though, Oops. Reward here instead goes to cars and trucks that rally excitement and energize creative muscles. Perceived opportunities win awards in this voting contest called the SEMA Awards.

Mods for brand new cars and trucks make massive money for a lot of companies and that money is enough encouragement for most aftermarket brands to keep innovating. Money is not the only motivator though for the founders and creators that find themselves crafting car parts for the masses when they started simply with a desire to create something for themselves. Industry leaders find their way up by messing around with a car that begs to be built, just like you and I are probably doing ourselves.

The Real Point.

Courtesy of

Courtesy of:

“Hottest Hatch”, “Hottest Truck” and “Hottest Coupe” all went to Ford at SEMA 2016. The actual corporation won three awards, which sounds completely one-sided and horribly bias. Again though, once I looked into the rules of the reward I realized it’s actually amazing. This is not a typical car show prize. Dealerships modify the Focus, the Mustang and the F-150 before they even leave the lot, no wonder they won SEMA Awards! Vehicle manufacturers are the only eligible parties because the award is for the most ripe and ready platform, the platform that the industry can’t wait to jump on. Drive down any road in suburbia Florida and you instantly see the pervasiveness of the f-series that won the award in 2016.

All the vendors that go to SEMA to flaunt their goods, they are the voters. Massive companies like Toyo, Air-Lift, Brembo and more are responsible to cast their votes. The result, the votes create an industry pulse on the cars the big guns can’t wait to start ripping apart. I get it now. The results didn’t make sense to me in past years, I thought those cars are terrible, what are they thinking. I wondered who runs this pyramid scheme. Now I get it, it’s all about the potential. The SEMA Award winners are actually exciting the makers, the manufacturers and the builder, and that is awesome.

The Finalists.

SEMA released the five category finalists last week. At SEMA in just a few weeks, vendors will vote each category down to a final winner and SEMA will give the five awards out to OEM contestants. Here are the finalists for the 2017 hottest awards according the latest news:

  • Coupe: Acura NSX, Chevrolet Camaro, Ford Mustang
  • Sedan: Audi A7, Cadillac CTS-V, Dodge Charger
  • Truck: Chevrolet Colorado, Ram Pickups, Ford F-Series
  • 4×4/SUV: BMW X5, Chevrolet Tahoe, Jeep Wrangler
  • Hatch: Audi A5, Ford Focus, Honda Civic

We will be at SEMA 2017 in full force and we’ll be sure to let you know what cars and what companies take the titles. The results will give you a heads up on what to expect from your favorite aftermarket makers in 2018.

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