The SEMA Show in Vegas is an annual gathering of everything from skyjacked brodozers to over-slammed, over-cambered sport compact nightmares. These rides compete for your attention, stealing your gaze and taking you to a place where you might not want to go.
Often times, we would prefer to see a build that gives something back, like beer and ice cream for starters. Kia gets us, which is why it hooked up with Smitten Ice Cream and Ballast Point Brewing and Spirits to produce two very special projects. This collab with these two disruptive companies celebrates the fine art of creating and crafting something as opposed to the more common manufacturing and assembly approach.
Smitten Ice Cream founder Robyn Sue Fisher wasn’t satisfied with the way mainstream ice cream was made with preservatives and other more nefarious sounding unpronounceable ingredients. She created the Brrr system, which uses liquid nitrogen to create the creamiest ice cream, made-to-order, from scratch in minutes. She took the Brrr to the streets of San Francisco in a Radio Flyer wagon and the Smitten story was born.
Ballast Point Brewing and Spirits started off in much the same fashion as a small group of home brewers, who simply wanted to make a better beer. That hobby blossomed into an obsession to make beer that was more art than science.
Kia respects these stories and wants to take them on the road, so to speak. This is the foundation for the 2015 Ice Cream Soul EV (aka, The Slinger) and the 2015 Sedona Beer Wagon.
LGE*CTS Motorsports in San Dimas, California is building the Beer Wagon. This team will transform a once refined and luxurious 2015 Sedona into a clamshell concept, with a wood top that opens up into a mobile unit that dispenses beer, delicious Ballast Point beer.
Because the Ballast Point crew loves fishing almost as much as brewing, many of their beers are named for fish with like-minded labels. Project manager Theresa Contreras and her LGE*CTS team applied this theme to the Beer Wagon. Custom wood panels reside throughout the build, comprised of three-inch strips of South African mahogany, painstakingly glue-laminated together. The finished product looks and feels very nautical, like that of a Chris Craft boat (ahoy!). Theresa is also the resident custom painter at LGE*CTS. When all is said and done, she will have put in more than 200 hours of work into the custom paint that includes much of the Paul Elder artwork from the Ballast Point labels.
In order to get on with the beer dispensing, the Beer Wagon will be equipped with a jockey box (essentially a cooler filled with 120-feet of coil to chill the beer) and a gray water tank. But the most important part is the four Ballast Point kegs residing beneath the taps.
Nothing goes better with beer than ice cream (unless, of course, we’re talking about more beer), which is why Gallagher Designs in Portland, Oregon was tasked with creating the Smitten Slinger. The Ice Cream Slinger is more than an ice cream truck. It’s a rolling ice cream parlor that creates each scoop from scratch.
The lead designer on the Slinger, Gallagher’s Matt Geiger proposed that the Soul EV tow a trailer, in a nod to Smitten’s original little red wagon. The crew at McKenna Metal fabricated a custom trailer, a necessity given the unique demands of the build. Those classic teardrop trailers that are enjoying a hipster renaissance as of late inspire the look. The Soul EV also lends itself to this classic theme. While the EV technology is all 2015, its whimsical design helps serve up the fun.
The Ice Cream Slinger will be swathed in Smitten Red with white accents and a Rockford Fosgate sound system will announce the wagon’s arrival via custom roof-mounted waffle cone speaker enclosures. Once parked, the Slinger coverts into a real ice cream machine with countertops bridging the gap between the Soul EV and the custom trailer. The Brrr System and liquid nitrogen tanks are housed in the rear of the Soul EV and the back of the trailer contains a fixins bar (because good ice cream is nothing without the fixins).
Check out the pictures to see the incredible level of workmanship that is going into these builds and stay tuned as we bring you the finished products straight from the 2014 SEMA Show floor.
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