Each October the whole automotive industry gathers in Las Vegas, Nevada, for a week-long convention officially called the Specialty Equipment Market Association show, or SEMA for short. We always spend a good amount of time checking out what's new for our market segment. The following is a cross section of new product offerings that should be available by the time you read this.
What is it: Aurora Turbocharger for 6.0L Power Stroke Diesels
What it does: It upgrades the factory variable turbocharger to a higher-durability, higher-output ATS Aurora Charger. It's a complete bolt-on kit.
Why it's cool: More air boost equals more power.
Info: 800/949-6002, www.atsdiesel.com
What is it: Skyjacker Forged Rebuildable Rod Ends
What it does: These new joints offer up to 40 degrees of misalignment angle andare easily rebuildable. They're available in both 3/4- and 1 1/4-inch sizes.
Why it's cool: Forged rod ends are essential for building custom link suspension systems.
Info: 318/388-0816, www.skyjacker.com
What is it: Lowrance iWAY 600c GPS
What it does: It helps you find the way to wherever you need to go.
Why it's cool: It's the first mobile GPS with roads, water, and satellite imagery all preloaded on a 30GB hard drive for automotive and marine use.
Info: 918/437-6881, www.lowrance.com
What is it: TJM Pro Locker for Jeep Dana 44
What it does: An air-operated locking differential that can be operated by the driver at the flick of a switch.
Why it's cool: It's another selectable locker option for the popular Dana 44 axle.
What is it: XD4000 Air Compressor
What it does: It produces compressed air for inflating tires and running air tools and other pneumatic equipment.
Why it's cool: The world's most powerful on-board air compressor now has a 100 percent duty cycle at 200 psi and 8 cfm at 100 psi.
Info: 949/768-4311, www.oasismfg.com
What is it: Auburn ECTED Locker
What it does: Now available for Dana 44 axles, the ECTED (Electronically Controlled Traction Enhancing Differential) represents a revolution in traction technology by providing the user with a selectable limited-slip or locking differential at the push of a button.
Why it's cool: Lockers allow increased mobility on the trail. Limited slips also contribute traction on slippery surfaces. Combining the two in one user-selectable unit is pure genius.
Info: 260/925-3200, www.auburngear.com
What is it: Rancho RS 9000XL Shock Absorber
What it does: The all-new RS 9000XL features a line of shocks with a massive 2.75-inch-diameter shock body.
Why it's cool: Until now, fullsize truck owners might have overlooked Rancho shocks. Now, with this larger offering, Ranchos will keep a hardworking fullsize fully damped.
Info: 734/243-8000, www.gorancho.com
What is it: Steel Core Security Tie-downs
What it does: Holds a load in place and prevents theft.
Why it's cool: These lockable tie-down straps have a high-strength steel core that resists cutting by would-be bandits.
Info: 877/594-7360, www.steelcore.com
What is it: Pro Comp HID Motorsport Series Lights
What it does: These 9900-series high-intensity discharge lights provide four times the output of the benchmark 130-watt, 8-inch lights, and draw 60 percent less amperage per light.
Why it's cool: HID lights are required hardware for driving fast at night.
Info: 619/216-1444, www.procompmotorsports.com
What is it: F.A.S.S. 95 Series fuel pump
What it does: The 95 series fuel pump removes air, dirt, and water from your fuel before it reaches the engine.
Why it's cool: High-torque diesel pickups demand high-volume-flowing clean fuel to function properly. This pump ensures just that.
Info: 866/769-3747, www.dieselpp.com
What is it: Ultra Seal U-Joint
What it does: It's an innovative internally sealed U-joint that provides extended life, even under the harshest conditions.
Why it's cool: Ultra Seal U-Joints are machined from high-tensile steel to reduce flex under high load conditions. The superior design of the internal-cap seal system ensures that the lubricant is retained in the bearing cap to promote extended driveline life.
Info: 888/452-7979, www.qualitygear.com
What is it: Jack Strap
What it does: This handy little strap makes jacking up a vehicle with a flexy suspension super-easy. Simply attach and jack.
Why it's cool: Hi-Lift Jacks can again be used on rigs with long-travel suspensions. No more jacking your rig so high that it's shaky and unsafe.
Info: 425/430-1445 www.jackstrap.net
What is it: Ford Super Duty Dual Battery Tray
What it does: A direct bolt-on design with no modifications needed, the tray accommodates a pair of Group 34/24 batteries. It's precision laser-cut out of black powdercoated 12-gauge steel. It also includes a battery manager switch assembly.
Why it's cool: This kit makes adding a second battery to your Super Duty a simple task.
Info: 800/962-2616, www.wranglernw.com
What is it: Kitchen To Go Kit
What it does: It's a complete "kitchen in a bag" for cooking during times without power-and it's also great for tailgating. Includes a stove, fuel, cookware, lantern, flashlight, and butane lighter.
Why it's cool: Now you can keep all your trail cooking essentials in one compact, easy-to-pack kit.
Info: 800/272-8603, www.athenabrands.com
What is it: Skyjacker RockLock Swaybar
What it does: This Jeep TJ sway bar is easily unlocked and relocked by twisting a hub.
Why it's cool: It makes simple a somewhat difficult task.
Info: 318/388-0816, www.skyjacker.com
What is it: AEV '07 Jeep Wrangler (JK) Off Road Winch Bumper
What it does: This heavy-gauge steel bumper for the new Jeep JK is airbag-compatible and has an integrated winch mount, tow points, jack points, and light mounts.
Why it's cool: This is the only stamped-metal JK bumper available today. The manufacturing process results in a unique aerodynamic design.
Info: 406/251-2100, www.aev-conversion.com
What is it: Extreme Outback Recovery Kit
What it does: The ballistic nylon bag contains straps, shackles, pulley block, chain, ratchet strap, gloves, and a tree saver. The bag has all-metal buckles and sports a reflective red triangle for safety.
Why it's cool: In a pinch, this kit can literally get you home in time for supper.
Info: 707/447-7711, www.extremeoutback.com
What is it: Haulin' or Crawlin' III DVD
What it does: Provides 43 minutes of action-packed rockcrawling entertainment.
Why it's cool: Haulin' or Crawlin' stars some of the industry's top drivers at some of the best-known venues in the country. Locations such as Area BFE, Rubicon, and Fordyce are just a few of the popular spots where footage was shot for this DVD.
Info: 530/414-4189, www.haulinorcrawlin.com
What is it: Marlin Toyota 2/3RZ to R-series Transmission Bellhousing.
What it does: This first-ever product allows any 2RZFE- or 3RZFE-powered Tacoma/T100 pickup the option to mate to either an R151F ('86-'87 turbo four-cylinder five-speed), early R150F ('88-'95 3.0L and five-speed), or late R150F ('96-'04 3.4L and five-speed) transmission
Why it's cool: The R-series transmission features larger internal components and does not suffer from the inherent problems of the W-series transmissions, such as a weak Fifth gear, mainshaft bearings, and Reverse gear. This bellhousing makes an ideal choice for all "RZ"-powered desert racers and rockcrawlers who desire the strongest pickup/4Runner/T100 manual transmission and 23-spline drivetrain. Vehicles that are converted from a 3VZ-E to a 3RZ-FE will especially appreciate this bellhousing due to the fact that only very minor drivetrain modifications are required.
Info: 559/25-CRAWL, www.marlincrawler.com
What is it: ROTELLA T with Triple Protection
What it does: This new oil helps engines last longer and run cleaner.
Why it's cool: Newly formulated, this oil is proven to help prevent wear and is formulated to meet the new specification criteria for low-emissions diesel engines (API CJ-4).
What is it: Trail-Creeper Suzuki 6.5 Low-Range Transfer Case Kit
What it does: This kit features a low-range reduction of 6.5:1 and a high-range reduction of 20 percent lower than stock.
Why it's cool: Trail Creeper gears are strong, quiet in operation, and can take a huge amount of trail abuse. This complete kit includes four new precision-cut gears, a counter shaft, needle bearings, shims, O-ring, gaskets, and input/output seals. The kit fits all '86-'95 Suzuki Samurai transfer cases.
Info: 559/252-4950, www.trail-gear.com
What is it: Sleekster Light Bar for all '00-'06 1/2-ton GM Trucks, Yukons, Suburbans, and Tahoes
What it does: Protects the front end while allowing mounting points for two auxiliary lights.
Why it's cool: It's made from 1 3/4-inch, 0.120-wall steel tubing with CNC laser-cut brackets and light tabs. It's also finished with a high-quality, three-stage candy-chrome powdercoat. No drilling, cutting, or welding is required, and the bar bolts right on using factory mounting locations. It's compatible with factory tow hooks.
Info: 602/803-1122, www.randyellisdesign.com
What is it: TeraFlex S/T Dual Rate Swaybar
What it does: This sway bar features two individual rates for Jeep vehicles to improve on-road handling and off-pavement capability.
Why it's cool: Simply twist the knob and the bar changes rate.
Info: 801/288-2585, www.teraflex.biz
What is it: A new Genright "package" to complement stretching the wheelbase on any TJ, YJ, or CJ.
What it does: It includes a new set of full corner guards and rockers guards that relocate the wheelwell opening 4 inches rearward. The included gas tank features a notch designed to clear the relocated rear axle.
Why it's cool: The major advantage with this system is that there is no unsightly gap in front of the rear tire, no unwanted rubbing between the rear differential and the gas tank, and the factory TJ rear flares fit right back on-and it all looks factory
Info: 805/584-8635, www.genright.com
What is it: MileMarker SX 9.5 Electric Winch
What it does: Gets you out when you're stuck.
Why it's cool: This electronic 9,500-pound-rated winch features a low amp draw and a new interactive remote that informs the user with LED indicators.
Info: 800/886-8647, www.milemarker.com
What is it: Dynatrac Stub Hub Conversion for Dana 60 4x4 Axles
What it does: The new Stub-Hub increases clearance by drawing the locking hub back inside the wheel by more than 1.5 inches per side. Up to 2.375 inches per side of clearance can be gained by combining the Stub-Hub with the new DynaLoc locking hub.
Why it's cool: Hubs are vulnerable; protecting them is a smart thing to do.
Info: 714/596-4461, www.dynatrac.com
What is it: EBC Yellowstuff Brake Pads
What it does: These new high-friction race-developed brake pads are said to gain an incredible 25 to 30 percent more stopping power.
Why it's cool: Extra stopping power is always a good thing, especially with larger wheels and tires.
What is it: Nitto Dura Grappler Tire
What it does: New Tire that features Nitto's Dura-Belt Technology, a third steel belt that augments the tire's tread area, and is engineered for high-torque pickup trucks.
Why it's cool: The tire comes in four- and five-rib designs and 17 sizes overall, ranging from 16- to 22-inch wheel diameters. It features a reversible sidewall design, multislant grooves, and a multirib pattern.
What is it: Banks Duramax Ram-Air with Super Scoop
What it does: It's a cold-air intake system with a 7 1/8-inch filter outlet, streamlined design, and a Super-Scoop.
Why it's cool: It's said to flow 48 percent better than stock, and adds big power with the tuner on '01-'06 Duramax engines.
Info: 626/969-9600, www.bankspower.com
What is it: Bolt-On Air CompressorMounting Kits
What it does: It's a bolt-on air compressor and mounting kit for the Duramax, Power Stroke, Cummins, and most modern V-8 and V-10 engines. The compressor provides 8 cfm at 100 psi.
Why it's cool: For those who want to add onboard air, these kits make it simple.
Info: 707/447-7711, www.extremeoutback.comCaption30