We invite you to follow along on the excitement of this year’s SEMA Battle of the Builders and SEMA Young Guns. Log on to the website for more information and follow us on social media for up to the minute action.
Check out these behind-the-scenes videos, then tune in to Motor Trend TV to see the entire special on the SEMA Battle of the Builders Competition.
DIAMOND BAR, Calif. (Nov. 9, 2018) -- Kyle Tucker was crowned winner of the fifth-annual SEMA Battle of the Builders® competition for his 1969 Chevy Camaro during SEMA Ignited, the official SEMA Show after-party designed to celebrate the builders and showcase products from the trade-only Show.
Tucker’s ’69 Camaro (sponsored by exhibitor ARP) beat out the amazing builds of Top 4 finalists Eddie Pettus (1932 Willys aircraft refueling truck, BASF), Rod Nielsen (1972 Mazda R100, Tire Stickers), and Young Gun Kyle Kuhnhausen (1972 Nissan 240Z, Young Guns Regional Winner from Goodguys).
All four builders will be featured along with many other SEMA Show builders in a new episode of the TV special SEMA: Battle of the Builders. Hosted by Adrienne “AJ” Janic and racer Tanner Foust, fifth-annual SEMA: Battle of the Builders TV special will air on the Velocity Channel at 10 p.m. on Jan. 7, 2019.
The 2018 SEMA Battle of the Builders competition included submissions from seasoned builders as well as new customizers representing an elite group of individuals who demonstrated extreme talent, creativity and craftsmanship in modifying cars, trucks, and SUVs. The program was expanded this year to recognize winners in each of the four different categories, with Tucker also winning the Hot Rod title, Pettus earning the Truck/Off-Road honor, Nielsen scoring in Sport Compact and Kuhnhausen in Young Guns (for builders 27 years and younger).
Industry experts RJ DeVera (Meguiar’s), David Freiburger (Motor Trend Group), and Fred Williams (Motor Trend Group) narrowed down the field of nearly 300 entries, an increase in participation from last year, to the Top 10 in each category before selecting the Top 12 builds overall. The 12 finalists then took over judging duties and voted to name Tucker the overall winner.
DIAMOND BAR, Calif. (Nov. 7, 2017) -- Troy Trepanier was announced as the winner of the 2017 SEMA Battle of the Builders competition during SEMA Ignited, the official SEMA Show after-party held at the conclusion of the 2017 SEMA Show.
Trepanier’s 1929 Ford Model-A Tudor sedan edged out the amazing builds of fellow Top 3 finalists Alan Johnson (1932 Ford Tudor) and Troy Ladd (1936 Packard roadster) for the title. The three builders will be featured along with many other SEMA Show builders in a new episode of the TV special “SEMA: Battle of the Builders,” which will premiere on the Velocity Channel on Tuesday, January 2, 2018.
Since 2015, the unique one-hour program has aired on the Velocity network, giving viewers a rare, behind-the-scenes look at the SEMA Show, up-close footage of the vehicles and exclusive interviews with builders as they share their personal stories and journey to the premier automotive trade show in the world.
For many of the builders, SEMA Battle of the Builders is their chance to prove that they are among the industry’s best. This year’s competition began with nearly 300 applications from builders representing an elite group of individuals who have demonstrated extreme talent, creativity and craftsmanship in modifying cars, trucks, and SUVs.
For more details about SEMA Battle of the Builders visit www.sema.org/botb.
About SEMA and the SEMA Show
The SEMA Show is a trade show produced by the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA), a nonprofit trade association founded in 1963. Since the first SEMA Show debuted in 1967, the annual event has served as the leading venue bringing together manufacturers and buyers within the automotive specialty equipment industry. Products featured at the SEMA Show include those that enhance the styling, functionality, comfort, convenience and safety of cars and trucks. Additional details are available at www.SEMAShow.com or www.sema.org, 909/396-0289.
The Corvette was a Select Six winner at Chicago World of Wheels, and received 1st in Class awards in best interiors, engine compartments, etc. The car has custom AME independent Chassis, floorpans, wheel houses, exhaust, bumpers, & interior, flush-mounted glass, machined trim parts, cross-ram EFI, Infinity box wireless control system, Kicker audio system, dash iPad interface, Tremec six-speed, extended body valences/rocker.
Leach, owner of CAL Automotive Creations in Bennington, Neb., is a previous Ridler winner, 2014 Trend Setter of the Year, Ford Design Award winner, Barrett-Jackson Cup winner, and Top 10 Battle of the Builders finalist in 2015. The car has Art deco finned suspension and chassis, cast-looking interior and components. Coach-built body with attitude and elegance combining old-school hot rodding.
The project started with a clean 1932 Ford Tudor body canvas. All planned modifications were laid out before any cutting began. Certain dimensions were not determined until the body had been on and off the frame for the desired look. Johnson was a 2015 SEMA Battle of the Builders Top 3 finalist.
Markin converted a four-door sedan into a two-door coupe and restyled the entire car. Every piece of the car has been modified, remade, or custom-made for the car but for two pieces. 2017 ISCA Grand Champion, 2017 ISCA Rod Champion, and 2016 Pirelli Great 8 Finalist
The car is a SplitRay 2017 Pirelli Great 8 cut down the middle and widened 6 3/8. It has a Z06-inspired interior, LS9 with a one-off supercharger system, and a six-speed transmission. Multiple computers provide complete control of the car with a Bluetooth device. I took over 20,000 hours to build.
Built by Rad Rides by Troy, whose mission is to build the finest hand-crafted automobiles in the world.
A modern race-inspired Camaro with an LT4 and T56, hand-built front spoiler and side skirts, custom lower rear diffuser/valance, one-off wheels, fully fabbed underhood sheet metal, and tremendous amounts of metal fab on the entire car. The Roadster Shop has delivered cars to compete specifically in Battle of the Builders the last four years.
The Hollywood Hot Rods Packard roadster is a one-off steel coach built from design drawings.
The car features a Roadster Shop Fast Track chassis, 440ci LSX Motor Dry Sump w/ Flex Fuel, TR6060 Transmission, completely fabricated front and rear Valance, Rocker extensions, engine bay, flush-fitted front and rear glass, shaved drip rails, Infinity Wire multiplex system, custom one-off interior, custom Dakota digital gauge cluster, ADV1 wheels, and Wilwood brakes. “We’re just doing what we love to do,” said Miranda.
Griffey is the owner of Hot Rods & Restorations in Knoxville, Tenn. He has been in business building hot rods and restoring concours, vintage and classic cars for over 36 years. After years of building cars for customers, he and his wife decided it was time to do a build for themselves.
Bespoke rebuild of the Porsche 993, an air-cooled car converted into a modern masterpiece that has full carbon-fiber wide-body construction.
Payne has participated, built, and designed over 68 builds prior to the 2017 SEMA Show. This year he brought 30 builds to the show with his name on them. “Battle of the Builders encompasses unique and innovative builds that make people’s jaws drop and create buzz in person as well as social media,” he said. “Well, my builds will do just that. They are one-off custom builds you won't see elsewhere.”