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The Passing Lane - September 2011

Page 1: Carlsen Meet Recap and Video, SEMA Preview

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Sale pricing valid from Monday, September 19, 2011 through Friday, November 04, 2011

Carlsen Meet Recap

By Chris Delano

ipd's XC60 project car at Oregon's Crater Lake, the deepest lake in the country

Earlier this year ipd attended the Davis Car Show in Davis California. VCOA’s Sacramento and Golden Gate Chapters worked together and created a fantastic event. During that show Cameron and I were approached by Larry Fuhs. Larry is the parts manager at Carlsen Volvo located in Palo Alto, California.

For the past decade Larry has been organizing a car show held at the Carlsen Volvo facility. Larry was determined to get some support from us at ipd. That meant we would make another trip to California. Larry filled us in on how the show has grown over the years. This year was going to be even larger! He already had over 100 cars ready to attend the event. Larry organized for Irv Gordon to attend. Irv is famous for racking up nearly 3 million miles on his 1800 to attend the show. Larry also managed to get Volvo to ship him a fully restored and very rare P1900 just for this event!

Cameron and I were ready to tackle another road trip and support a fantastic group of enthusiasts in the Volvo community. This time our journey led us to Palo Alto, California. Cameron and I both arranged to have two ipd project cars displayed at the show. We decided to take our 2004 V70R Stage III project car along with our new 2010 XC60.

This particular drive down wasn’t as exciting as before when we attended the Davis show, Cameron and I drove down on separate days. The fun began when Cameron arrived the night before the show in Palo Alto. We detailed the two cars and got a good nights rest. The next morning we drove a few blocks from our hotel to Carlsen Volvo where the Volvos were already lined up for registration.

Neither one of us expected to see such a wonderful venue. Larry and his crew had done an amazing job organizing where all the cars were to be parked. Trophies and door prizes were spread out under covered canopies for all the winners at the end of the day. Carlsen Volvo was also very generous providing a full catered lunch for everyone who attended.

The Volvo community is filled with very special people. This was truly an amazing event and well worth the drive! We would like to thank everyone who stopped by and said hello. The big thanks goes out to Larry and Carlsen Volvo for being such a integral piece in supporting the Volvo community. If you would like to see the cars and people that attended the 10th Annual Carlsen Volvo show, check out this video.

SEMA 2011 Preview

by Chris Delano - ipd projects manager

It’s that time of year again where we start organizing our annual trip to the Las Vegas SEMA Show. SEMA (Specialty Equipment Market Association) has been around just as long as ipd. Matter-of-fact it started the exact year ipd was established. In 1963 the Car Gods must have graced that small group of manufactures who originally created “Speed Equipment Manufacturers Association”. I wonder if those founders had any clue how integral of a part their weekly meetings would eventually become. Like a fine wine the aftermarket automotive industry has gotten better with age. Almost 50 years later that small group of entrepreneurial operations has been joined by thousands of companies, designers, producers and suppliers of specialty products. Over 7,000 corporate members contribute to the vitality and strength of a $34- billion-a-year industry.

As the membership categories grew into a variety of different rankings such as, warehousing, purchasing, independent retailers, specialty stores, sales agents, subcontractors, and publishing companies, SEMA changed its name to Specialty Equipment Market Association. SEMA is looked upon as our “Guardian Angel” in the automotive aftermarket industry. Their mission has been to protect and cultivate this business throughout the world. They were started by people who love cars. These enthusiasts took their weekend hobbies and made them into a thriving business for others to participate in the freedom of creating a specialty vehicle. Their commitment to businesses like ours led them to opening a government affairs office in Washington D.C. and key locations worldwide. They act as the “Watchdog” in every state in the United States. They work hard to protect consumer’s rights to drive accessorized and customized vehicles. SEMA members and anyone who loves cars can protest pending legislation that might harm the aftermarket automobile market. They’ve helped numerous consumers interact with car dealers who sometimes try to get away with charging for repairs on a modified vehicle by claiming (wrongly) that adding aftermarket parts voided its warranty. Since the introduction of California regulations in the ‘60s, federal and state governments and regulatory agencies have proposed, introduced and promulgated a variety of restrictive measures. Although they were sometimes introduced in the name of clean air and improved safety standards, SEMA takes into account the repercussions and effects on businesses. They work with legislators who sometimes take an overly broad scope and narrow it down to what the real consequences could potentially be.

This year ipd will be showcasing our XC60 project car at SEMA. Click here for more information about this project

Many businesses were started just like ours. A hobby and true passion led to creating a resource for others to enjoy great products proven to work on the race track and benefit every day drivers. SEMA has been a huge resource for ipd over the years. Many products developed at ipd have been more successful due to the laws and security measures placed by SEMA. We’re proud to be a part of such an amazing organization.

Every year SEMA presents an enormous trade show in Las Vegas. This is where manufactures unveil their latest offerings. In the late 60’s SEMA presented their first tradeshow that has a little over 100 booths. Now the show has over 2,000 exhibitors stretching over 2.5 million square feet of vendor space. SEMA week attracts over 100,000 buyers and distributors anxiously waiting to walk the never ending isles of products. This show provides the perfect place to interact with vendors. I think of it as a networking paradise! More than 1,500 new products will be on display along with the latest technology and equipment ranging from manufacturing equipment to mobile electronic devices. SEMA hosts hundreds of educational seminars loaded with profit building strategies, market trends, common business practices and crossover opportunities that might help generate revenue and expand sales profits.

Being able to attend the SEMA show is definitely a huge perk for any employee. It’s not just fun and games when attending the show. Sure the thousands of cars lining the convention center spark’s some adrenaline when you first arrive. Your brain experiences some sensory overload when trying to comprehend these over-the-top creations sitting outside being drooled on all day. You might get lucky and see a celebrity or two. I’m not talking A-list celebrities, even though they’re there too. I’m talking about Carrol Shelby who was the famous Mustang Cobra designer for Ford. Chip Foose who’s known for being one of the world’s best hot rod designers and fabricators. My claim to fame was eating breakfast at the cafeteria and the late Boyd Coddington, another iconic hot rod designer, sat down right in front of me. We both engaged in simple conversation about the show and how business was going, but still I was privileged to see him eat eggs and toast just like me! What I’m getting at is anyone that you’ve idolized in the automotive industry that you perceive as a celebrity, is there!

Back to how much hard work there is- Our crew attends the show, once you actually make it into the convention center, that’s where the fun…. I mean work begins. Our team splits up and tackles certain sections. Remember the show is over 2.5 million square feet. Our legs can only handle so much! We spend 4 days looking for the latest and greatest product fitting into our niche market. Many new products spawn from relationships we’ve built during the SEMA show. We like to find other manufactures that have utilized a Volvo to show off their product. A few Volvo’s might be found gracing the exhibitor sections. SEMA is divided into huge sections catering to a specific market. Mobile electronics, Hot Rod Alley, Import Tuning/Performance are just a few that come to mind. If your company can make it work, there’s no other place on earth where you can display your automotive project with the utmost of egotistical rage that at the Las Vegas SEMA Show. This year we’re going to be displaying our XC60 project. In the past we’ve worked with Volvo designing and creating the wildest Volvo concepts. This year we’ve toned it down a bit, but still came up with a design that is functional yet a little extreme. We’re excited to be a part of this year’s event. We’ll make sure and keep everyone posted on the progress of our current SEMA build and its journey to Las Vegas.

Hopefully you now have a bit more insight into how amazing the SEMA organization really is. Many automotive businesses like ipd appreciate all the efforts SEMA has put into helping us stay in business. SEMA isn’t just a car show. It’s a culmination of events that has taken place over the past 46 years. Barriers were broken by hobbyist that wanted to see their vision come to life, not only for themselves, but for other businesses. Entrepenuers in the 60’s were able to release their own ego, knowing they needed something larger than their own businesses to survive. For those of us who like to make our cars unique, or restore cars that would normally end up in a scrap pile, SEMA has been there for you! For more information regarding SEMA visit www.sema.org or you can check out the car show website at www.semacarshow.com We’ll make sure and keep you updated as we get to the Las Vegas Convention Center with articles during and following the event.

Sale pricing valid from Monday, September 19, 2011 through Friday, November 04, 2011

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