5.0 Mustang & Super FordsEvents
SEMA Show 2013 - Still Climbing
With a new Mustang on the horizon, the aftermarket still brims with Fresh gear
Next year's SEMA Show will be abuzz with the 2015 Mustang. Mark your calendars for November 4-7, 2014, if you want to take in all the excitement.
As trendy as teenage fashion, the Specialty Equipment Market Show naturally gravitates to what's cool. And, just like fashion, the annual show held in the Las Vegas convention center ebbs and flows with the trends. So, in any given year, you'll get a clear direction of the industry's headspace by the cars you see at the show.
While the trends come and go, our beloved Mustang is a constant. If there were ever a go-to display vehicle for a SEMA booth, it is a Mustang. That said, we didn't really know what to expect from the 2013 edition of the show. The ever-present rumors about the '15 Mustang were on the tip of everyone's tongue, but that car is still in the distance. So, despite the anticipation, the '14 and earlier Mustangs were such a ubiquitous sight in booths that the Mustang took home the coveted Hottest Car award (and its big brother the F-150 grabbed Hottest Truck honors).
That enthusiasm carried over to the products. You might expect that the aftermarket already has the Mustang well in hand. It does, but there's always room for innovation and variations on a theme. To uncover all the new gear, big and small, your favorite magazine editors combed through every booth on the massive show floor to bring you this top-to-bottom report. Keep reading and we think you'll find some new gear for your Mustang mod list.
Spark blowout is common and annoying for modular Mustang engines that are boosted by blowers and turbos. However, we think it's important to let you know that spark theoretically is not being blown out when it happens. The condition (usually identified by a misfire) is caused by increased cylinder pressure, and a spark's inability to jump the plug's gap under that high pressure. ACCEL's new Energy Booster (PN 383800) appears to be a cure for this problem. The device is a MAP-sensor-referenced, plug-and-play unit that connects to and increases power to the coils to help them jump that gap under pressure.
Taking home Best Engineered New Product honors for its A3000 pump, the folks at Aeromotive were understandably proud. This new carbureted pump offer improved flow capabilities and a modular design that allows for easy customization. The company also showed off the latest iteration of its easy retrofit EFI pump conversions, the Phanton 200. Additionally, Aeromotive offered a new diesel fuel system if you are so inclined.
If you are building a custom inlet system, Airaid's Universal MAF Adapter Housing will come in handy. These housings are available in 3-, 31⁄2-, and 4-inch diameters to suit your engines airflow needs. Of course, these are compatible with the company's U-Build-It Intakes, so they can help you with a complete custom induction system.
It's pretty much impossible to pass a hands-on shifter display at SEMA, without running through the gears at least once (you're really hardcore if you make engine noises while doing it). American Powertrain's White Lightning shifter definitely is an eye catcher, and after banging gears on the demo stand, we have to say it really is quick (second-to-third is unbelievable). Available for Tremec's T-5 ($303.45), TKO ($313.19), and T-56 ($345.45) transmissions, the White Lightning features independent adjustable spring bias for improved centering per your driving style, and definitely is a shifter that we'll be working with at some point soon.
App-Tronics's new SmartNav 5 is probably one of the coolest tech parts that we saw at the 2013 SEMA show. The trick rearview mirror brings GPS navigation (with turn-by-turn directions), a high-definition reverse camera, Bluetooth 4.0 (with smartphone music integration), music player and a video/photo viewer, all into a 5-inch captive touchscreen that can be mounted in the factory location on a Pony's windshield. And if that isn't enough, continuous DVR recording, as well as radar and laser protection, and redlight and speed-trap databases are optional. Keeping your eyes on the road won't be easy with this hotness onboard.
In the highly competitive arena that is SEMA's New Products Showcase, Auto Meter stood head-and- shoulders above all entries in the Street Product category. The company released its uber-cool boost controller system (PN 3381); a trick, new 21⁄16-inch gauge that provides complete and total forced-air management, like boost-by-rpm or boost-by-gear, as well as low- and high-boost settings for the street and track. We dig this gauge, which also doesn't require any laptop or auxiliary devices for boost-control programming or operation. Pretty slick, and deserving of the accolades it received at SEMA 2013.
Form meets function in this new, cast-aluminum, diff cover from B&M Racing & Performance Products ($165), hewn from an aluminum alloy that is said to run cooler. The cover fits the solid-axle, 8.8 rearends of '86-'14 Mustangs, increasing their fluid capacity by nearly a full pint, and adding strength to the rearend through load bolts that support each bearing cap. The cover includes magnetic fill and drain plugs, and a classy engraved B&M logo for Brand-X drivers to stare at when your ‘Stang pulls away.
SEMA's New Products area presented us with another bitchin' upgrade for ‘strip-focused Foxes that remain on four lugs—Baer Brakes' Deep Stage Drag Race front brake system for ‘87-'93 Mustangs (PN 4261415; $895). The bolt-on kit features 11x1-inch, directionally vaned, slotted, drilled, and zinc-plated rotors; 6061-T6 aluminum hats and four-lug hubs (with long studs); Deep Stage S4 calipers; zinc-plated brackets; high-grade stainless hardware; billet dust caps; and Hawk pads.