Chevy to show sporty concepts at SEMA
Sterling Heights — General Motors Co.'s Chevrolet brand will showcase performance concepts of several cars during the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) Show next month in Las Vegas.
GM's largest brand on Thursday, from its Heritage Center here, revealed some of the vehicles it intends to show at the large trade show, which is closed to the public. Chevy will showcase an SS Sport, two Sonic concepts, an Impala Blackout concept and a variant of the Cruze RS during SEMA, Nov. 4-7.
"We really want to become the brand of choice when it comes to personalization, performance and capability," said Jim Campbell, GM's U.S. vice president of performance vehicles and motorsports. "When it comes to personalization, or individualization, or customization, that's really important because people really want to express their personalities."
Chevrolet will showcase 28 vehicles at SEMA this year, including five vehicles it worked with partners to build. It also will show crate engines, transmissions and accessories.
"These concepts suggest possibilities of how to personalize each model and amplify Chevrolet's performance leadership," Paul Edwards, vice president of Chevrolet marketing, said in a statement.
In the past, some Chevy concepts shown at SEMA have developed into production models or special editions such as the Sonic Dusk and a Hot Wheels Camaro. Demand and interest from the show could lead Chevy to produce some of the latest concepts or to take parts of them and apply them to production vehicles.
The SS Sport includes enhancements from the vehicle's Australian roots, including a Some Like it Red Hot exterior color not available in the U.S.
"We pulled some of the accessories and parts from Australia and put it on the car," said Dave Ross, GM's design manager of special builds.
The SS Sport concept features Holden logos in the wheel caps, floor mats and cargo tray. The SS Sport has black stripes on the hood and deck lid, a black rear spoiler and grille and black 20-inch wheels.
The SS is powered by the LS3 V-8 engine, kicking in 415 horsepower and 415 foot-pounds of torque.
Campbell said GM and Chevy will gauge interest from SEMA attendees about the SS Sport.
"Based on the feedback, we think there's a good chance it'll come to market," Campbell said.
The Impala Blackout uses an LTZ model, and adds a lot of black features such as a grille surround, black bow-tie, black door handles and black mirror caps, a "little bit more sinister approach to the Impala," said Todd Parker, a GM senior design manager.
The Impala Blackout has an all-black interior and features a 3.6-liter V-6 engine.
Depending on interest in the concept, Parker said the Impala Blackout is "something that's very doable in the future."
Chevy also previewed its Sonic Performance concept that includes engine performance, suspension and brakes and appearance enhancements. It includes a Chevy stage kit that allows the turbo engine to produce more horsepower. A Sonic Accessories concept in white features a matte black stripe, white headlamp rings, black grille surround, mirror covers and rear spoiler, plus a Chevy suspension kit to lower the ride height. It also unveiled a Cruze RS Plus concept that builds on the RS model, adding a wildfire metallic exterior paint, matte black twin-stripes and a custom rear spoiler.