We'll let you in on a little secret: Every year we promise to tell you about all the new products debuting at the Specialty Equipment Marketer's Association (SEMA) show, a trade convention of epic proportions that encompasses just about every aftermarket company that makes stuff for any motorized vehicle, and every year we choke. The truth is, so many new parts hit the scene at once that there's no way we can cram all of them into a few magazine pages. Therefore, what follows is the cream of the crop, the best of the best, and the newest of the new. We'll keep looking for more to tell you about, but in the meantime enjoy this sampling of the latest products to come from the creative minds of the aftermarket industry.
What's New: The Platinum+4 spark plug, which features four ground electrodes for less resistance and more efficient spark energy. It has a platinum center electrode for increased durability and performance, and the gap is preset at the factory.
Who Makes It: Robert Bosch Corp; for more information, contact your nearest Bosch retailer.
What's New: A manual idle-speed controller for fuel-injected engines. The controller allows the user to momentarily override the computer to raise the idle in certain situations, such as when rockcrawling or winching. It installs in minutes and has no effect on normal engine computer controls.
Who Makes It: Howell Engine Developments, Dept. 4WOR, 6201 Industrial Way, Marine City, MI 48039, 810/765-5100.
What's New: The Platinum 9000 winch, which features a 44 percent stronger-than-original 3.5hp electric motor, an integrated solenoid assembly, 150 feet of cable, and a rated line pull of 9,000 pounds. It fits in existing Ramsey Winch mounting systems.
Who Makes It: Ramsey Winch Co., Dept. 4WOR, P.O. Box 581510, Tulsa, OK 74158-1510, 800/283-9740, 918/438-2760.
What's New: An RPM Series after-cat exhaust system for '99 Chevy pickups. The 50-state-legal, stock-replacement system comes with a stainless steel muffler and aluminized mandrel-bent 16-gauge tubing. All mounting brackets and hardware are included for easy installation.
Who Makes It: Edelbrock Corp., Dept. 4WOR, 2700 California St., Torrance, CA 90503, 310/781-2222, www.edlebrock.com.
What's New: A bolt-on supercharger kit for '96-'98 Tacomas, 4Runners, and T-100s equipped with V-6 engines. The kit is smog-legal and works with both automatic and manual trucks.
Who Makes It: Toyota Racing Development, Dept. 4WOR, 1382 Valencia Ave., Tustin, CA 92780; for more information, contact your local Toyota dealer or visit www.trdusa.com.
What's New: The Outland front grilleguard and Sure-Step nerf bars for the '99 Chevy Silverado. The Outland front guard includes four auxiliary-light mounting tabs and removable wire headlight protectors. The Sure-Step bars feature a nonslip polyester pad for easier entry and exit. Both products are also available for most other popular trucks and SUVs.
Who Makes It: Smittybilt Inc., Dept. 4WOR, 395 Smitty Way, Corona, CA 91720, 800/2SMITTY (276-4889), www.smittybiltinc.com.
What's New: A Chevy S-10 small-block V-8 conversion oil pan for 4x4s. The pan is equipped with a crank scraper, oil baffles, a windage tray, and a magnetic drain plug. It's manufactured from 16-gauge steel, has a 7-quart capacity, and is designed to work with most popular engine conversion mounts and headers.
Who Makes It: Canton Racing Products, Dept. 4WOR, 2 Commerce Dr., North Branford, CT 06471, 203/484-4900 (orders), 203/484-7542 (tech).
What's New: A complete electric fan assembly for Chevy trucks. It replaces the stock beltdriven fan with twin 14-inch fans and comes with an adjustable thermostat and air-conditioning relay. It measures 16 1/2 by 32 1/2 by 4 1/4 inches when installed and is capable of pulling 5,200 cfm when operating at 2,200 rpm. It draws 30 amps when under full load and is available with a manual override switch.
Who Makes It: Flex-a-lite, Dept. 4WOR, P.O. Box 580, Milton, WA 98354, 800/851-1510, 253/922-0226.