”It’s a passion or addiction.”—John Hennessey, on why he soups up so many cars.
The SEMA Show—that's Specialty Equipment Market Association—takes place every fall in Las Vegas, and it’s kind of a big deal. Any manufacturer with even the slightest hope of getting performance-minded buyers rolls out one-off show cars, and every tuner worth his or her weight in carbon fiber brings their newest and best products. What happens to all those cars? Someone’s gotta buy ‘em. Not every single car below was at SEMA, but a couple of them are making their world debut this week.
623 hp Hennessey HPE600 Jaguar XFR-S
Pretty much anything Hennessey touches turns to, well, not gold, but a blur of speed. After all, this is the same company behind the fastest car in the world. This is the first Jaguar from the Texan tuner, and it’s a stunner. It’s a ferocious 623 hp British sedan with a splash of American hot rodding for good measure. It only debuted in May, and the lessons learned from tuning this car have already been applied to the F-Type. [More pics…]
Tiffany Blue Rocket Bunny Scion FR-S
Built in 2012 to highlight wheel company Forgestar’s newest rims, this Scion has about twice as much money invested in performance parts alone than the entire car cost new from the factory. It’s supercharged, loaded down (lightened up?) with carbon fiber, and has been used exclusively for demonstration runs and magazine shoots for the last two years. [More pics…]
2007 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon “SEMA Edition”
What makes this worthy of being called a “SEMA Edition”? If you were a Jeep enthusiast and started going through a parts list to create your ultimate weekend ride, you’d probably end up with something like this. Those bars across the top are functional; they’ll keep you alive if you suddenly find yourself tumbling down a ravine. That’s when the winch and all the suspension goodies would come into play. [More pics…]
2014 Hennessey x Rich Evans Designs Corvette
When a Hennessey Corvette is merely your starting point, you’ve got something good going on. This car officially makes its debut in Las Vegas this week, and it’s already for sale. If you watch shows like Car Wars, Pimp My Ride, and Motor City Masters you’ll recognize the man behind it, Rich Evans. What you’re looking at is a 200 mph beast with a killer sound system and plenty of hand-laid carbon fiber. [More pics...]
2011 Camaro Whipple 650
This car shows off some of Whipple Superchargers’ best and most potent equipment. The bottom line is that it’s a 650 hp show car that’s managed to retain its ability to be a fantastic daily driver. Obviously, the builders didn’t stop there, and loaded it down with a fantastic sound system and the stylistic accessories you see here. [More pics…]
2014 SEMA Studebaker Monster Truck
This truck makes its debut this week, and you’ve likely never seen anything quite like it. It’s a classic Studebaker restomod monster truck. The bed is made of Lexan, so you can stare at the beautiful suspension work. The engine’s straight out of GM’s high performance catalogue, and you don’t have to be from a small Texas town like New Braunfels (where the shop is) to have an insane amount of fun in this. [More pics…]
Chrysler 300 Widebody
Sometimes it’s nice to see just a good old fashioned over-the-top build. Technically this is a Chrysler 300 running the full SRT V8 drivetrain, but beyond that, it’s a sea of custom-designed fiberglass panels, both inside and out. It originally dropped at the 2005 SEMA Show, but since then it’s essentially been on the cover of one magazine per year. [More pics…]