2021 SEMA Show Returns Bigger and Better Than Ever

LVCC West Hall Construction

LVCC West Hall under construction in 2019. Photo by: Trevor Freeman

Here at Generation High Output, we don’t just write about cars – we are car enthusiasts. We like bringing you news and information about what’s happening in the automotive world. We like seeing cars up close and in person.

Because of the pandemic, the Specialty Equipment Market Association decided to make SEMA a virtual event for 2020. We completely understand why, but it definitely did not provide the same experience as walking the convention center, talking to builders, meeting people, and discovering amazing new booths and vendors.

Joyfully, the SEMA Show will be back to an in-person event for 2021! The automotive aftermarket expo returns to the Las Vegas Convention Center November 2-5, 2021. But wait, there’s more!

The Las Vegas Convention Center has completed its latest expansion, and the new West Hall adds an incredible 1.2 million square feet of floor space. And SEMA will be using all of it! That’s right, the 2021 SEMA Show will be the largest event yet!

A sky bridge connects the new West Hall to the North Hall, crossing over Paradise Road. This expansion will host the Trucks, SUVs, and Off Road exhibitors, Powersports and Utility Vehicle exhibitors, and Restyling and Car Care Accessories exhibitors. This means changes to the layout of the South Hall exhibitors. The South Hall Lower Level will feature wheel and tire exhibitors as usual, but the South Hall Upper Level will feature booths and exhibits related to Collision Repair, Tools, and Equipment.

There will be a lot to see at the 2021 SEMA Show, and we plan to be there to bring you the most updated information on trends in the auto industry, the aftermarket, and some cool custom cars as well! For more information, visit www.semashow.com NOTE: The SEMA Show is a trade-only event and not open to the general public.

SEMA 2019: 65 Mustang and 69 Camaro by Blown Mafia


After spending two whole days wandering the halls of the Las Vegas Convention Center at the 2019 SEMA Show, I was exhausted. My feet were tired and I had seen so many amazing cars that I was becoming numb to them.

Seeking to get a breath of fresh air, I ventured outside the convention center and found myself in the Bronze Lot behind the South Hall. It was here that I came across a pair of incredible custom cars belonging to Bradley and Ashley Gray and their custom car business, BLOWN MAFIA.

The sight of a 1965 Ford Mustang and a 1969 Chevrolet Camaro, side by side, both painted in matching shades of Porsche Guards Red, was an interesting sight to see. But even more impressive was that both of these cars feature crazy built engines producing big power.

The ’65 Mustang features a 427 cubic inch LSX engine with not one, not two, but THREE superchargers! It is quite an incredible setup, and one that drew a lot of attention from onlookers and passers-by.


1965 Ford Mustang
Builder & Owner: Ashley Gray
Power Plant: 427 LSX Triple Supercharged with Arias Hemi Heads
Drivetrain: 2 Speed Powerglide
Rear End: 9″ Ford
Paint: Porsche Guards Red
Interior: Allanti Light Sand

Right next to the Mustang was this 1969 Chevrolet Camaro. The car features a 468 cubic inch Big Block Chevy engine which is both blown and Procharged for crazy power.

1969 Chevrolet Camaro
Builder & Owner: Bradley Gray
Power Plant: 468 Big Block Chevy Blown & Procharged
Drivetrain: TH350 Transmission
Rear End: 12 bolt
Paint: Porsche Guards Red
Interior: Allanti Light Sand

This pair of “His and Hers” muscle cars sets a new standard for #relationshipgoals. I am glad they brought their cars out to SEMA, and that I got a chance to see them.

Follow Blown Mafia for more:
https://www.instagram.com/blownmafiaofficial/
https://www.facebook.com/Blown-Mafia-707443152664622/

SEMA 2019: 1983 Volvo 242 LSX Swapped


What comes to mind when you think of Volvo? Probably words like safe, practical, boring. None of those are words that would describe Sean Fogli’s 1983 Volvo 242 coupe. The resto-modded car was featured in the Optima Ultimate Street Car area at the 2019 SEMA Show in Las Vegas. I stopped in for a closer look at this amazing build.

What looks like a dull, early 80s Swedish car is actually a highly capable, tire-smoking, track-ready race car in sheep’s clothing. The car’s original 4-cylinder engine has been swapped for a GenIV 6.0L V8 LS engine mated to a T-56 manual gearbox. The cherry on top is an LSA supercharger from a Cadillac CTS-V, and an LS9 fuel rail and injectors.

Peering in the windows, the roll cage, Racepak display, and Recaro seats with Schruth harnesses are more clues that this is no ordinary car. This Volvo is set up to handle the twists and turns of a road course, which was definitely not in its original design requirements.

The car has a great stance and rides on CCW Wheels with Bridgestone tires. It competed in the 2019 Optima Ultimate Street Car Invitational, an annual track event that is open to street legal cars and trucks.
The LSX badge on the rear of the car is one of a few subtle hints that this Volvo is definitely not stock. This is a super cool build and one of the standout cars of the Optima Ultimate Street Car Challenge. I was privileged to see this car at SEMA 2019, and really enjoy featuring these types of custom cars for our readers. The car participated in the end of show SEMA Cruise on November 8, 2019.

Follow Sean Fogli on Instagram @hackster1.

SEMA 2019: 1997 Honda Prelude Pickup Conversion “Prelute”

What do you get when you combine a pickup truck bed with a passenger car? There’s no witty punchline here – you get a car-based pickup truck or “Ute” vehicle, though few know the official name of “coupe utility” vehicle. The body style originated in Australia in the 1930s. By the 1950s, it had made its way to America as the Ford Ranchero and soon afterward, the Chevrolet El Camino.

These vehicles were in production for many years and offered a unique experience that many drivers couldn’t find elsewhere: car-like handling and size, but with the cargo carrying ability of a light pickup truck. The Ranchero ended production in 1979, and the El Camino met a similar fate in 1987.

For more than 30 years, no automobile maker has stepped forward to fill the demand for this type of vehicle in the market. As a result, a number of custom “car-based pickup trucks” have begun popping up. We’ve covered a few of them before, such as an E36 BMW Truck, Volkswagen Ute, and an Audi Ute around town.

At the 2019 SEMA Show in Las Vegas, I happened across one of the cleanest car-based pickup custom builds I have seen to date. This car began life as a 1997 Honda Prelude, and was converted by the owner Song Toh into a small pickup. In a YouTube video covering the build, Song says it took him 15 months and more than 600 hours of time to complete the build. He has also given the car the incredibly clever name of “Prelute” – a combination of “Prelude” and “ute” – the Australian term for this kind of vehicle.

I saw the vehicle on display at the 2019 SEMA Show in Las Vegas, where it had a steady crowd of admirers. The build photos on the Deviant Customs Facebook page show the progress of the car, from adding additional chassis bracing to the glossy orange wrap, doing basically all of the work himself. Congratulations on a super cool, unique, and very clean build.

Be sure to follow the owner on Instagram @deviant_customs for more updates.

SEMA Show Goes Virtual for 2020

Photo by Samantha Borges on Unsplash

The Specialty Equipment Market Association is the governing body that organizes the SEMA Show, a trade show and exposition for the automotive aftermarket industry. On August 6th, 2020, the association announced that the 2020 SEMA Show will not take place as planned. Originally scheduled to take place November 3-6, 2020, the annual event has been rescheduled as a virtual event.

First held in 1967, the SEMA Show moved to Las Vegas in 1977 where it has remained for the past 42 years. The massive trade show is one of the largest in the country, drawing more than 165,000 attendees in 2017. 25% of the attendees traveled from outside of the U.S. to attend the week-long event. The economic impact of the show is also significant, even in a city known for large trade shows and industry events. The flights, hotels, meals, and convention services have a total economic impact of $315 million, according to a 2017 article by the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

The SEMA Show covers all corners of the automotive industry, from performance and aftermarket companies, to wheel and tire manufacturers, off-road, high end stereos and equipment, tooling and equipment, and auto body and restoration shops.

SEMA typically begins weeks ahead of time, with show services staff and exhibitors setting up their booths in the massive convention center, which has more than 3.2 million square feet of exhibit space (and still growing!). The week of the show, Monday is open to members of the press. Tuesday through Friday are open to registered attendees, including buyers, exhibitors, and other attendees. The show ends with the SEMA Cruise – a parade of hundreds of show cars leaving the convention center. A new event called SEMA Ignited gives the public a chance to see some of the custom cars from the show in an evening event, held close to the convention center.

The details of how the show will transition to a virtual format have not yet been disclosed. The New Products Showcase and Education Sessions will likely be webinars or video presentations, and the networking and happy hour events could be held as virtual meetings. But for many attendees, the big feature of SEMA is the cars: more than 2,000 customized cars, trucks, vans, SUVs, and other vehicles take over the convention center are a huge draw for companies showcasing their products.

Generation: High Output has covered the SEMA show since 2012, and we look forward to bringing you coverage of the automotive aftermarket industry again this year.

SEMA 2017: 1963 Rambler American Wagon Custom Build

Generation: High Output was on scene for the 2017 SEMA Show in Las Vegas! One of the cars that caught our attention was this amazing Rambler American Wagon owned by Suzy Bauter. She was kind enough to tell us about the car, which she built for autocross racing. From the LS engine swap to the massive fender flares, this is both a show car and a race car! Watch the video segment to learn more. Congratulations to Suzy on winning Best Hot Rod in the Gran Turismo Awards!