It’s easy to wander around the SEMA show in Las Vegas sniggering at the outrageous creations on display. What cannot be sniggered at, though, is the show’s significance.
The accessory and performance parts market that the SEMA show is all about is worth a massive $70 billion globally each year, according to Mopar boss Pietro Gorlier. Some $30bn comes from North America, with the rest fairly evenly split around the world, including around $15bn in Europe.
The SEMA show is the shop window for that part of the industry. It is that opportunity to get the ball rolling for a new part or accessory. It’s less about the complete cars you see and more about the components that make them up.
Mopar is Fiat Chrysler Automobiles’ parts and servicing arm, and looks after anything aftermarket, from the accessories catalogue for your new car to servicing contracts.
Gorlier won’t put a figure on just how much money Mopar makes, but his relaxed demeanour and glint in his eye are of a man who’s happy with his lot. He did confirm, however, that Mopar’s sales grew 20% year-on-year in the 2014/15 financial year.