- Credit: Nissan

Sema 2018 tuned car show main highlights

41w ago


Whenever Sema graces the traditional promiscuities and narcotics of Las Vegas, it doesn’t stay for long. Like a flower than only blooms briefly once per year, the Sema party comes and goes in merely a few days. Tomorrow, the smell of petrol and the sound of steroid-enhanced V8s will evaporate for another year as the doors close on the 2018 show. But before then, here is my rundown of this year’s main highlights.

Ford GT Carbon Edition

Credit: Ford

After announcing that demand for the GT has resulted in Ford extending the production, they’ve now introduced a new Carbon Edition that reduces the weight by 40lbs (18kg). While such a slim diet may prove to be unnoticeable to even the most sensitive of road testers, in grey carbon with a red stripe, it stands out nicely from regular GTs.

Nissan Project Clubsport 23

Credit: Nissan

While the 370Z replacement may be some time away, Nissan are keen to show there’s life in the old dog yet. Rather than modifying the old 3.7L naturally aspirated V6, Nissan has fitted this car with the 3L Twin-Turbo V6 normally found powering Infiniti’s. That means 400bhp that you get to enjoy through the delights of a 6-speed manual gearbox. What a shame that it’s merely a one-off and not available for customers to purchase.

Chevrolet Crate Engine

Credit: Chevrolet

Chevrolet has used this year’s Sema to announce the 755bhp 6.2L supercharged LT5 V8 is now available for people to buy as a crate engine. For the purpose of giving an example, Chevy bolted one of these monstrous ZR1 engines into a 1973 Chevelle, which if you ask me, looks as though it’s desperate to pounce down a drag strip.

Ford Mustang Series 1

Credit: Ford

With the unofficial rules of Sema stating that a tuned Mustang must be present for the show to exist, Ford has provided said Mustang in the form of the Series 1. In partnership with RTR Vehicles, this Mustang brings a gurney-flap spoiler, a front splitter, side skirts, 19 inch wheels, and a new grille with LED lights. Only 500 will be made, so if you want one, get in now while you can.

Hoonitruck Ford F-150

Credit: Hoonigan

Despite the F-150 pick-up not forming the shape one would normally associate with Ken Block, it is instantly recognisable as one of his monsters thanks to the Hoonigan paint job, and bulging muscles. Using the 3.5L Twin-Turbo V6 from the Ford GT - tuned up from 647 to 914bhp - this truck will soon feature in one of Mr Block’s internet films.

Mopar Dodge Charger “Hellephant”

Credit: Dodge

One of my personal favourites from this year’s show is this glorious Dodge Charger. While the visual changes are enough to unleash a stream of drool, it’s what sits under the bonnet that makes this car special. For it has a Mopar crate engine consisting of 426 cubic inches (7 litres), and a supercharger that could swallow Lake Tahoe whole. The result is 1000bhp - making Dodge the first manufacturer to sell a 1000 horsepower engine from a crate. A 6-speed manual from the Hellcat sits in the middle, which will be exciting with 950lb-ft of torque. Due to all the incredible oomph, this car has earned the nickname “Hellephant” after a 1964 engine of the same capacity that was called the “elephant” due to its power and torque.

Chevrolet Camaro eCOPO

Credit: Chevrolet

Despite a name which makes it sound like it’s suffering from a lung disease, the Camaro eCOPO aims to show people a glimpse at the future of the crate engine. With an all-electric powertrain, this is a muscle car that can silently annihilate people at the local drag strip. With the electric motor pumping out around 700 horsepower and 600lb-ft of torque, this Camaro is capable of reaching the quarter mile in 9 and a bit seconds.

Mustang Boss 429 by Classic Restorations

Credit: Classic Restorations

Harking back to the old 429 Boss Mustangs is this stunning modern interpretation by Classic Restorations. With its name however comes a purist-irking inconsistency. You see, the original Boss’s were called 429s because they used a 429 cubic inch V8 - which equates to 7 litres. This new car however has an 8.4L V8, which without the help of any superchargers or turbochargers, unleashes 815bhp onto the road. Somehow, I think it’ll be rather easy to forgive them for this “discrepancy”.

Future GT Forty by Magnaflow & Superformance

Credit: Magnaflow/Superformance

Something that will irk the purists ineffably more than the Boss 429 is this modified Ford GT40. While it may appear to be simply an old GT40 in modern GT racing colours, there is something else it shares with the current GT - and that’s its 3.5L Twin-Turbo V6 engine. Thanks to a new pair of turbochargers from Garrett, we can expect the power figure of this car to comfortably surpass that of the 647bhp stock GT - but at the moment, the companies responsible for this car (Magnaflow & Superformance) are keeping their lips tightly sealed in regard to the all-important statistics.

Speedkore Dodge Challenger Demon

Credit: Speedkore

Finally, my personal favourite car from this year’s Sema show happens to be one of the quickest. What you’re looking at here is a Dodge Demon that’s been fettled with by a company called Speedkore. What Speedkore do is replace the Demon’s normal body with one made out of carbon, which reduces the weight by around 400lbs (181kg). Then, they swap the 6.2L V8’s supercharger for a pair of turbos, resulting in power rising from 840 to 1400bhp! As a result, this is a Demon that can thunder down the quarter mile in just 8.77 seconds at 161mph - proof of which can be viewed and marvelled at in the below video.

But now I want to ask you guys: what’s your favourite car from Sema? Let me know by voting below, and be sure to add a comment too.


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Written by: Angelo Uccello


Twitter: @AngeloUccello


Facebook: Speed Machines - DriveTribe


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