MegaGallery: SEMA 2022 was hot rod heaven
The annual SEMA show is a lot to absorb. You don’t drink it in as much as brace yourself for the fire hose of custom cars, trucks, and 4x4s lining every square foot of the place. It’s easy to spend hours walking through just one of the four main buildings of the Las Vegas Convention Center and not check out every featured vehicle. And none of that includes the fascinating booths and stands outdoors.
As part of our SEMA 2022 coverage, we’ve already showed you some of the racy cars from Optima, four fresh Ringbrothers debuts, and one of our favorite new 4x4s. In an effort to fill in some gaps, we’ve assembled this quick rundown of some of our favorite hot rods, muscle cars, and customs. But it was obvious walking the halls this year that the Chevy C10 truck, aka square-body, was having a moment. So let’s dig in to all that was SEMA 2022:
The newest debut from Weaver Customs is this stunning 1967 Mustang finished in Liquid Grey, a color pulled from the Ford GT. The fastback is powered by a 600-cubic-inch Boss Nine engine from Jon Kaase that takes the legendary Boss 429 to another level of performance. Randy Weaver told us that the owner has cycled through a lot of cars in their collection, but this is a longtime dream car that they plan to keep for quite a while.
Renown painter Mitch Kelley has a thing for ’57 Chevys and has built a few for himself. His latest project is finished in a fantastic fade that Mitch sprayed in PPG paint. It starts as black at the top and ends up a vivid red at the rockers. The Chevy is powered by a Pace Performance LSX 376-B15—essentially an iron-block LS3 built for boost with forged internals—that’s topped by a Boost District LSA supercharger and sends power to a Tremec six-speed transmission. It rides on a Roadster Shop chassis with Penske shocks and inside you’ll find a full Kicker audio system.
These next few feature vehicles are just a tease, by the way—we plan on following up on each of them in the form of a much more detailed article.
Mike Burroughs has made quite a few noteworthy SEMA debuts and his Ferrari “244” is Of course, Ferrari never built a 244 model, but when you replace a Ferrari V-8 with a turbocharged 2.4-liter Honda K24, the moniker makes sense. The understated look using white with black accents was a great call.
Cameron Bishop from Cutting Edge Hot Rods showed off his recently completed 1972 C10 which was influenced by Group 5 sports car racing. The wide body has flat-topped wheel openings inspired by a Porsche 917 that conceal, at least partly, a custom chassis with suspension and drivetrain bits salvaged from a C6 Corvette Z06. There’s no rear bed floor, which shows off the rear-mounted transaxle and saddle fuel tanks. The LS7 didn’t make its way from the wrecked Z06 the Bishop used as a donor. Instead, a mildly modified LS3 takes its place and makes similar power, for now at least.
World Series champion Howie Kendrick is a huge fan of custom trucks and debuted his latest build from the crew at Fat Fendered Garage, an absolutely stunning 1966 C10 with a flawless finish. It’s powered by a crate LSA V-8 and has a luxurious interior featuring diamond-quilted upholstery.
SEMA 2022 seemed like the year of the square-body, as several shops showed up with beautiful ’70s and ’80s Chevy and GMC pickups.
This 1974 C10 from Big Kid Custom Rides in Lindon, Utah, was already customized when it arrived at their shop, but it had seen better days. Stolen from the owner and then recovered, it was time for a major overhaul. It got the perfect ’70s paint job, to go with its more modern forged carbon-fiber body panels and Roadster Shop chassis. It’s powered by an LS V-8 and six-speed manual.
(If you want to see more square-body trucks, check out the full slideshow at the bottom of this article.)
Speaking of perfect ’70s paint, this EcoBoost-swapped Pinto Cruising Wagon had great graphics as well. Lightweight, powerful, and with enough room to haul parts for just about any project, this mini wagon checks a lot of fun boxes.
Flat Out Autos wasn’t quite done with the 1968 International Harvester Travelall, but there was plenty of cool work to show off. The big wagon is powered by a Chevy LT4 V-8 and rides on a Roadster Shop chassis. With all of that glass letting the sun shine in, Flat Out Autos got creative and added a rear air conditioning unit where the factory spare tire well used to be, then routed the air conditioning ducts through the quarter panels and into vents in the C-pillars to give rear-seat passengers a cool breeze.
Pure Vision’s latest creation is an understated 1967 Chevelle. Like the Oldsmobile that Pure Vision’s owner, Steve Strope, built for himself, this car featured a number of subtle modifications: a modernized suspension with improved brakes and a 511-cubic-inch big-block. The V-8 boasts fuel injection, albeit masquerading as downdraft Webers.
There are plenty more SEMA builds to see, and we’ll bring you more as we finally can process the overwhelming number of beautiful builds. Check back for more custom builds as next up we’ll show some of our favorite 4x4s.