This year, Ford is shining the spotlight on a range of vehicles, from a blacked-out Taurus SHO to a “Travel Inn” Transit Connect, at the 2009 SEMA (Specialty Equipment Market Association) Show – Powered by Ford, to be held Nov. 3-6 at the Las Vegas Convention Center.
Ford is the featured automaker of this year’s SEMA show, the premier automotive specialty product trade event in the world representing the $31.8 billion aftermarket industry. Taking the stage for the first time at SEMA will be Ford’s all-new flagship sedan, the 2010 Ford Taurus.
“Customization enthusiasts are looking for a unique vehicle with quality, and the design, technology, craftsmanship and performance of the new Taurus provide the perfect platform,” said Pei-Wen Hsu, Ford Taurus marketing manager.
Ford SEMA Design Manager Melvin Betancourt agrees. “The expressive design of the Taurus opens a world of possibilities in the aftermarket,” he said. “I think people will go nuts with it.”
Adam Genei, owner of Mobsteel in Brighton, Mich., knew he wanted to customize the Taurus SHO when he saw the vehicle revealed at the North American International Auto Show. “I was just blown away by it,” he said. “I knew I could customize it into a really mean-looking ride.”
The Mobsteel Taurus SHO is completely blacked out – the body, windows, even the wheel lips. The only features not done in black are the wheel centers and badging, which stand out in a brushed aluminum finish. Genei says he also is making some performance modifications. “The Taurus SHO has a very refined drive. Our goal is to take a little bit of that refinement out and make it a little more hard-edged,” he said. “We’re hoping to get more than 420 horses.”
Scott Hoag, owner of MRT-Direct in Plymouth, Mich., also is enhancing the performance of the Taurus SHO. “We wanted to put a little more power to the ground,” he said. “We’re going to lower the car, give it a more street-aggressive stance and add some of our styling cues, with ground effects and a custom hood.” The MRT-Direct Taurus SHO features a red exterior with candied cherry roof and custom hood. “We developed a custom stainless-steel exhaust system to help the car sound more high-performance, and finished it off with an extreme audio entertainment system from Kicker,” said Hoag.
MRT-Direct also is customizing Ford’s popular midsize sedan, the 2010 Fusion. “We took the base Fusion with a four-cylinder engine and asked ourselves ‘How can we jazz it up to have some fun from a styling perspective but also from a performance perspective without giving up fuel economy?’” said Hoag. The answer? Take a metallic blue Fusion, black out the roof, hood and spoiler, then add a single intercooled turbocharger, H&R Springs street performance coil-over suspension and six-speed manual transmission. “We expect to be in the 275 to 300 horsepower range with this car.”
For environmentally conscious Fusion enthusiasts, M&J Enterprises is customizing a 2010 Fusion Hybrid that is green in more ways than one. “Our Fusion showcases a variety of eco-friendly accessories, such as air splitters, heat-reflective paint and window film, all of which are either lighter in weight than the factory items, increase fuel economy or eliminate petroleum-based products,” said Jonathan Garcia, a principal at M&J Enterprises in Phillips Ranch, Calif. The M&J Enterprises Fusion Hybrid sports a silver exterior with a two-tone paint job – dark charcoal with green pearl on top – and bright green striping. “We’re trying to show people that hybrids can be really cool with the right kind of accessory modifications,” said Garcia.
Ford’s display also will include the new commercial van, a 2010 Transit Connect, customized by Azentek and Grant Products of Grand Blanc, Mich. “The cool part about customizing this vehicle is the amount of room you have for many options,” said Azentek’s Bob Fehan. “We have a complete kitchen, sleeping arrangements and several LCD screens for viewing movies both inside and out. Our vehicle also features a canopy, port-a-potty, even an outdoor shower.”
This year’s featured Ford project vehicles at SEMA include:
2010 Ford Taurus by Tommy Z Design
The Ford Taurus lends itself quite easily to the Superlux Youthful Styling and yet it remains sophisticated. Tommy Z embellished this great vehicle with his own classic VIP luxury style and components.
2010 Ford Taurus SHO by Mobsteel
The Ford Taurus SHO and Mobsteel are both committed to being anything but ordinary. So it’s no surprise that the Taurus SHO by Mobsteel is one extraordinary vehicle. The trademark black-on-black Mobsteel paint job, custom fascias, and a host of trim touches and details give this 2010 Taurus SHO a tough menacing look, whether coming or going. And that’s just the beginning, as this SHO has the goods both inside and out.
The bad boy rides on massive 22-inch Mobsteel forged two-piece wheels and super-low-profile Pirelli PZero Nero tires. A completely customized chassis with Air Runner front struts and Mobsteel adjustable rear air ride provide attitude to the max. The Magnaflow Performance cat-back exhaust and JL Audio equipment make this Taurus SHO sound as tough as it looks.
2010 Ford Taurus “Best of SHO” by MRT-Direct
MRT-Direct gives its signature classy touches to this Taurus SHO by adding subtle ground effect treatment, and a black cherry roof and custom vented hood. Increased performance is achieved through turbo system efficiencies, an exhaust upgrade, and wheel, tire and suspension modifications. The cabin is designed to be sporty and comfortable, while a Kicker sound system delivers the final beat.
2010 Ford Fusion Sport by Aaron Vaccar Signature Series
Young custom car designer Aaron Vaccar, most noted for his work with modern and sport compact vehicles, has taken his knowledge of next-generation styling and applied it to the new Ford Fusion Sport. Speed, style and sound – quite simply, this Fusion reveals that such a balance does exist in a sport-tuned street car. Upgraded with the thrills of a turbocharged motor, this Fusion now packs even more power to back up its stunning looks.
Noting that function needs to meet form, the entire audio and trunk enclosures have been designed to seamlessly integrate into the vehicle’s styling and practicality. Tastefully mix the right combination of modifications, a bit of unique style combined with an already impressive platform, and what you get is this Aaron Vaccar Signature Series Fusion Sport.
2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid by M&J Enterprises
This Ford Fusion Hybrid by M&J Enterprises showcases a variety of eco-friendly accessories and aerodynamic parts. These range from air splitters to heat-reflective paint, window film and a vehicle data display. All items are either lighter in weight than the factory items, increase fuel economy or eliminate petroleum-based products. The data display helps increase the consumer’s environmental awareness. The whole package delivers a desirable, eco-friendly Ford Fusion aimed at consumers who like to customize their vehicles and are concerned with environmental issues.
2010 Ford Fusion “T4” by MRT
This custom version of the fun, sporty, fuel-efficient Ford Fusion successfully combines the best of all worlds. MRT started with clever but subtle appearance changes to the exterior trim and paint. Next, they brought the same sport feel and style to the interior with revised seating and interior trim accents. The fun-to-drive factor is kicked up a notch with a single intercooled turbocharger and Street Performance coil-over suspension. To unleash the full potential of the awesome turbocharged powerplant, MRT skillfully exhaust-balanced the system with a high-performance stainless-steel Max-Flow™ h-pipe and back half exhaust system using the finest CNC Mandrel bend tube and high-flow components. The result is a system that delivers enhanced power and truly satisfying performance-car sound. Twenty-inch wheels and tires add a final touch to set off the look and give this Fusion an even smarter, sportier stance. On the inside, a kickin’ audio system from Kicker provides the perfect balance of amped-up entertainment.
2010 Ford Transit Connect by Azentek and Grant Products
Azentek and Grant Products teamed up to build this unique “Travel Inn” Ford Transit Connect van. Designed for people who are always on the go, it comes complete with the Azentek in-vehicle computing and navigation radio, and a Concept DVD for watching movies. You can cook while tailgating with your mini pull-out kitchen and even sleep in complete comfort in the upper bunk bed. You also will drive in style with the Grant Products body kit, race-inspired steering wheel and GAC interior. The vehicle features 18-inch BBS wheels with a Winona PVD chrome finish and Bridgestone Firestone tires.
2010 Ford Transit Connect by Ford Vehicle Personalization
This 2010 Transit Connect was developed by the Ford Vehicle Personalization team and it features Genuine Ford Accessories, Ford Licensed Accessories and various personalization concepts. Inspired by West Coast beaches, the vehicle is presented in a soft anodized Metallic Gold exterior paint with a large energetic side graphic depicting young people playing sports and having fun on the beach. Various racks and carriers on the exterior secure your favorite outdoor gear.
The interior is the main focus of this custom Transit Connect, showcasing the flexibility of space in the cargo area and the ability to create a realm of personal use around this vehicle rather than strictly commercial/business usage. Shown with two seats, the cargo area will house an audio wall with a custom audio/video system, a skateboard rack displaying four skateboards and a rear-mounted LCD flip-out flat-screen monitor with video game console.
2010 Ford Edge “RallyE” by Santini Paint
Santini Paint, combined with the talent of Steve Stanford Design, has taken the Ford Edge crossover to a level of design utilizing influence from the old-school British racing era, tuner cars and a little rally car, so that this “soccer mom” grocery-getter becomes the “cool” car for the family. With a few inches out of the suspension, the big wheel and tire combination, 3dCarbon body kit, British Racing Green color and an asymmetrical competition stripe paint scheme with some interior accents added in, Santini’s Ford Edge becomes a “Coolover.”
2009 Ford Focus by FSWerks
In its constant search for more power, the FSWerks crew has taken a 2009 Ford Focus Coupe and pushed it to the edge. Utilizing many years of racing, fabricating and powertrain experience, this transformed Ford Focus is now pushing more than 500 horsepower, making it one serious track Focus.
2009 Ford Focus by Creations n’ Chrome
Creations n’ Chrome has taken green technology to the extreme with its 2009 Ford Focus. The exterior starts with an outrageous green chrome finish using Cosmichrome water-based spray-on plating technology, 3dCarbon Euro Series six-piece body kit and lightweight Work Emotion wheels. To increase engine efficiency and aerodynamics, an FSWerks turbo kit and H&R coil-over suspension are added. The interior was custom refinished from top to bottom with House of Color paint and custom Katzkin leather.
2010 Ford Flex by Falken Tire
Breaking the mold of cookie-cutter project vehicles on oversized chrome rims, Falken Tire has envisioned the perfect blend of traditional “lowrider” styling and a 2010 platform while utilizing today’s finest full-size CUV, the Ford Flex. Rolling on 22-inch Falken S/TZ04 tires and wire- spoke Dayton wheels, this ride will surely earn the respect of everyone from old-school purists to new-age tuners. Break the mold and Flex Your Style.