The mighty SEMA Show takes place every November at the Las Vegas Convention Centre and for many car nuts around the globe it’s the ultimate automotive event. It’s the dream tuning show that everyone - and we do mean everyone - are falling over themselves just to attend… let alone actually put a car on display with the best of the best.
Of course, it doesn’t hurt that this monster of a show is in Sin City itself, and that’s a whole other appeal, but what’s most important is that it’s also the world’s biggest aftermarket tuning show… although it’s so big that even the biggest car manufacturers get involved, too. Not only that but this year SEMA celebrated its 60th year in the business. That’s quite an achievement, too. No other modified car show can boast anywhere near that, right?
When it comes what’s on display, only the absolute cream of the crop need apply here, it’s actually quite the honour to get to show off your modified car or truck at SEMA. Only the top builds from all over the world are selected for display outside the massive trade halls.
Essentially what you’ll find here then, is a collection of the ultimate modified builds, and it takes a full four days just to get round them all. So, with that in mind you’ll understand why it’s always been something of a dream, not to mention a big deal, to get a representative our AF Project fleet shipped half way around the world to join the line-up of many of the best builds on the planet. It’s a task that’s equally as daunting as it is exciting.
But, we have just the car for the job, a project with universal appeal that’s already stormed all of the biggest European events over the past season or two – our Super Silhouette S15.
Now, as you probably already know, we’ve put this car together from the ground up. Starting with a ex-Endless demo drag racer with over 900bhp, we’ve added everything from air-ride and custom built wheels to the modified Liberty Walk widebody conversion, full roll cage and motorsport air jacks. It’s also had a couple of looks for various events this season… but here’s the question; would that be enough for the world’s most famous tuning show?
The truth is that with these mods (and either livery) it most certainly was. The S15 already had its spot with the organisers and could have easily hit SEMA in any one of these guises and wowed the thousands of attendees. But that said, of course we we’re going to mix it up anyway… this is Auto Finesse, after all. So, it was quickly decided that a whole new ‘V3’ look was in order for the big SEMA debut. The only small problem was that all the work would have to be completed before the car could be strapped down for a month or so in a shipping container on the long voyage across the Atlantic.
Now, not being ones to do thing by halves, changing the livery would be a big part of the job, but there was actually a lot more to it than a new wrap. New custom Rotiform wheels, wing mirrors and modified headlights aside, the whole car was de-wrapped before being torn down by the guys at Colourkraft in Wellingborough for a full respray inside and out. Obviously these guys know the car extremely well as they fitted the kit from Liberty Walk Europe and applied the paint for the V1 build, but it was still one hell of a job to complete this time around, not to mention a super-tight timescale.
In addition to the new white paintjob they also repainted the teal roll cage (and matching brake calipers) in an all-new pink hue. Giving something of a clue to the scheme for our new livery.
With the big Nissan back together and looking absolutely perfect, the final job was getting on the new livery. As always we transported the car down to the guys at Identity Wraps in Kent where they could expertly apply a new look custom designed by Blackfish Graphics in Germany. As always both did an amazing job to get the car ready just in time for us to get it to Milton Keynes ready for shipping to the US of A.
Fast forward to 6 weeks later and - after a bit of an impromptu show detail - the AF x LBWK S15 made its debut at SEMA right at the front, pride of place, ticking off yet another ambition for our brand. Obviously this one went down amazingly with the car fans in the US, too. They haven’t seen anything quite like it on their shores, that’s for sure… even if that Liberty Walk steering wheel appears to be on the ‘wrong’ side.
And it wasn’t only that, either. At the same time we also shipped Our Porsche Powered Mk1 Caddy to support the guys at Auto Finesse USA on their massive trade stand. This means that not only did one of our newest projects make the trip to Las Vegas, but the one that started it all, too.
Check out the video below to follow along with the whole story, and be sure to take a look at the behind the scenes section of our blog for more project cars, news and top show reports.