ETTN Shares Progress and Opportunities
The inaugural ETTN networking event, held November 5, at the SEMA Show’s New Product Showcase, featured comments by SEMA Vice President of Vehicle Technology John Waraniak and SEMA Board Chair-Elect Wade Kawasaki.
The inaugural Emerging Trends & Technology Network (ETTN) networking event, held November 5 at the SEMA Show’s New Products Showcase, was a huge success. Focused on building community among automotive specialty-equipment engineers, product developers and industrial designers, the event featured several speakers who helped facilitate conversation on emerging industry technology and trends. The event included food, beverages and refreshments, courtesy of the network and SEMA. John Waraniak, SEMA’s vice president of vehicle technology, took a few minutes to address the attendees and let them know some of the latest and greatest things his group has been working on.
SEMA’s vehicle technology department helps members understand the latest vehicle technologies and connects them to cost-effective resources, programs, solutions and benefits relevant to their businesses and product-development plans. Three areas of priority for members are vehicle dynamics and emissions, vehicle electronics and vehicle-technology alerts.
Vehicle dynamics and emissions programs ensure that members’ products and modifications can be successfully integrated with the latest vehicle dynamics and emissions technologies and comply with federal and state motor vehicle regulations, while vehicle electronics information helps integrate members’ products with the latest automotive and consumer electronics technologies and leverage emerging opportunities with digital lifestyles and connected vehicles.
Waraniak said that SEMA’s vehicle technology alerts provide members with the latest information about advanced vehicle technologies, new business opportunities and regulations impacting their products and businesses, and the association’s Vehicle Technology Briefing Seminars share fresh ideas and help members find inspiration. Waraniak noted that the seminar speakers have been optimistic about the collective future of the OEM and automotive performance aftermarket industry.
Members of the ETTN were also excited to have staff from the SEMA Garage on hand to speak to some of the industry’s top engineers. The only facility of its kind, the SEMA Garage is intended to help auto-parts manufacturers develop products in as little as six weeks. Members are able to gain access to new vehicle models from automakers and have final products available for sale before those vehicles are even available to the public. The Garage’s many tools include a FaroArm portable coordinate measuring machine, a 3D printer, digital race car scales, a dynamometer and emissions lab, a training center and a photography studio.
Mike Spagnola, vice president of OEM and product development, has said that the SEMA Garage is the ultimate production facility. The building was purpose-built to include state-of-the-art equipment specific to auto-parts manufacturers and was carefully designed to help any SEMA member develop new products and speed them to market.
Industry leaders came out to network, and discussed the challenges and changes that are happening in the automotive and performance industry, and there was a very positive feeling in the air. Manufacturers reported that they are starting to see the market come back to life, with the overall impression that business has been up across the board this year.
There are many new and innovative developments taking place in the automotive industry, ranging from energy-efficient vehicles to self-driving cars. From an emerging trends and technology standpoint, the industry is more alive than it ever has been.
“I came to this event because I want to stay up to date and current with what is happening in our Industry,” said Chris Clark of Kooks Headers and Exhaust. “What a great opportunity to network with a bunch of smart, talented and influential people. Events like this, where I’m given the opportunity to learn and meet new people, are priceless.”
“We want to thank everybody who came out to the mixer and participated in our networking event,” said Regis Finn, chair of the ETTN. “We are building a great community of engineers, programmers and those concerned with rapidly changing technology. That is what it’s all about: building a community of like-minded people.”
For information about joining the ETTN, please visit www.sema.org/ettn. If you have questions, contact Bryan Harrison, SEMA director of networks, by phone at 909-978-6691 or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.