NORTH E AS T E DITIO N
CT / DE / ME / MD / MA / NH / NJ / NY / PA / RI / VT
‘Who Pays for What?’ Survey: Some Shops Not Measuring Steering Columns as Called for by OEMs Mike Anderson of Collision Advice gets concerned when he sees “Who Pays for What?” survey findings that suggest half of shops may not be following OEM safety inspection procedures. “Many automakers, including General Motors, Nissan and Subaru, have very specific vehicle safety inspections required as part of collision repair,” Anderson said. “Those inspections may include the removal and measurement of the steering column. We asked shops about this procedure for the first time in our surveys this year, and 50% said that
was something they’ve never billed for when it was required. I’m worried that may mean they’re not performing the necessary safety inspections.” Anderson, who conducts the quarterly “Who Pays” surveys in conjunction with CRASH Network, said he was glad to see that among those billing for the labor to measure a steering column when it is necessary and performed, 41% said they are being paid “always” or “most of the time” by the eight largest national insurers. Another 28% said they See ‘Who Pays for What?’, Page 24
Vol. 12 / Issue 6 / September 2021
New Hall, New Beginning, New SEMA Show by Ed Attanasio
In 2020, SEMA had to reinvent itself, and the result was SEMA360, a completely virtual show that performed surprisingly well despite all the obstacles. It was a noble experiment during highly uncertain times, but SEMA’s Vice President of Events Tom Gattuso and his team were able to save the event by quickly pivoting and literally saving the day. In 2017, the show took place 30 days after the tragedy of Mandalay Bay, so Gattuso is not unfamiliar with last minute changes, and this
year will undoubtedly be more of the same. Autobody News spoke to Gattuso about the upcoming 2021 SEMA Show.
There’s a buzz about the new West Hall, a 1.4 million-square foot addition to the Las Vegas Convention Center. How will it affect collision repair-related exhibitors and attendees?
This year, things are less uncertain, but new considerations and special circumstances are See New SEMA Show, Page 18
SEMA: Economic Outlook Remains Positive, but Supply Constraints and Inflation Loom
Automotive Industry Trend Continues Towards Use of Lightweight Materials
by Kyle Cheng, SEMA
by Stacey Phillips
The overall U.S. economic outlook remains positive as the country continues to bounce back from 2020. However, challenges remain on the horizon: supply-chain constraints, inflationary pressure, a tight labor market and a potential COVID-19 resurgence. Supply-chain disruptions continue to affect many sectors of the economy. For the auto industry, the chip shortage is disrupting production, reducing inventory levels and driving up prices.
Since the early 20th century, steel has been the material of choice by auto manufacturers worldwide. Almost every vehicle model has been designed using steel due to its strength, cost-effectiveness, workability and availability.
Nearly every car manufacturer reported higher average transaction See Economic Outlook, Page 12
Ryan Mandell, director, Claims Performance, Auto Physical Damage Solutions for Mitchell International.
“Automakers are now moving away from the use of mild steel, which was a core substrate used for automotive construction for a long time,” said Ryan Mandell, director, Claims Performance, Auto Physical
Damage Solutions for Mitchell International. Instead, OEMs are increasingly using lightweight materials such as aluminum, high-strength steel, ultra-high-strength steel and plastic. Mandell has worked in a variety of industry segments over his career. He joined Progressive Insurance as an adjuster after graduating college in 2004 and then worked for a medium-size MSO, Precision Collision Auto Body, based in Washington. Before he was hired by Mitchell in 2017, he was in charge of five wrecking facilities owned by B&R Auto Wrecking in the northwest for four years. Autobody News talked to Mandell about the use of lightweight materials in current and future model vehicles and how this shift will impact collision repairers.
Why are automakers moving away from the use of mild steel and using lightweight materials? See Lightweight Materials, Page 28
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M AV ERICK APPROV ED . REQUES T A DEMO, V ISI T W W W. M AT R I X S Y S T E M . C O M
REGIONAL AASP/NJ, WMABA Announce NORTHEAST 2021’s Collision P.R.E.P. Schedule�������������������6 CT Police Department Says Moving To Tesla Model 3 Brought Big Savings������������������������12 LMP to Acquire Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram Dealership in New York���������������������������������23 NABC Recycled Rides Program, Partners Donate Refurbished Vehicles to 4 NJ Veterans������������8
Conference���������������������������������������������������37 ASE Presents Chairman’s Scholarship���������������48 Automotive Industry Trend Continues Towards Use of Lightweight Materials���������������������������1 Boyd Group Reports 44% Sales Increase and Demand for Labor in U.S.�����������������������64 CCC Promotes Goodson to CTO�������������������������64 Enterprise Fleet Management Largest in U.S.����26 FTC Issues Rule to Deter Rampant Made
INDEX OF ADVERTISERS
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Serving New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Northern Virginia, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont and adjacent metro areas. Autobody News is a monthly publication for the autobody industry. Permission to reproduce in any form the material published in Autobody News must be obtained in writing from the publisher. ©2021 Adamantine Media LLC. Autobody News P.O. Box 1516, Carlsbad, CA 92018 (800) 699-8251 / (760) 603-3229 Fax www.autobodynews.com email@example.com
Acura of Westchester�������������������������������������� 48
LKQ Corporation����������������������������������������������� 5
American Icon Automotive Finishes����������������� 26
Long Automotive Group���������������������������������� 14
Audi Wholesale Parts Dealers�������������������������� 67
Matrix Edge������������������������������������������������������ 2
Axalta Coating Systems������������������������������������ 6
Mazda Wholesale Parts Dealers���������������������� 62
in USA Fraud�������������������������������������������������66
BMW Wholesale Parts Dealers�������������������50-51
Mercedes-Benz of Paramus���������������������������� 37
General Motors Names Global Leads�����������������14
Cadillac of Mahwah���������������������������������������� 36
Mercedes-Benz of Wilmington������������������������ 24
Generating More Profit in Your Auto Body Shop
Mercedes-Benz Wholesale Parts Dealers�������� 59
MINI Wholesale Parts Dealers�������������������������� 52
Central Avenue Chrysler-Jeep-Dodge-Ram����� 25
MOPAR Wholesale Parts Dealers����������������38-39
Certified Automotive Parts Association�������������� 8
New Holland Ford������������������������������������������� 18
Cherry Hill Nissan������������������������������������������� 42
New Holland Toyota���������������������������������������� 42
Nissan/Infiniti Wholesale Parts Dealers������������ 60
Colad/EMM Specialties����������������������������������� 68
Northstar Kia�������������������������������������������������� 46
Colonial Automotive Group������������������������������ 49
Courtesy Mitsubishi���������������������������������������� 40
Open Road Acura of East Brunswick��������������� 44
DePaula Chevrolet-Ford���������������������������������� 45
Packer Norris Parts����������������������������������������� 47
Eagle Abrasives, Inc���������������������������������������� 21
Porsche Huntington���������������������������������������� 44
Eastchester Chrysler-Jeep-Dodge������������������� 16
Porsche Wholesale Parts Dealers�������������������� 53
Eckler’s Automotive���������������������������������������� 31
Empire Auto Parts������������������������������������������� 30
Pro Spot International��������������������������������������� 7
Equalizer Industries, Inc���������������������������������� 26
Rafferty Subaru����������������������������������������������� 12
Ford Wholesale Parts Dealers�������������������������� 65
Rockland Nissan��������������������������������������������� 12
Franklin Sussex Auto Mall������������������������������� 32
SATA Dan-Am Company���������������������������������� 11
GM Wholesale Parts Dealers��������������������������� 55
Schultz Ford��������������������������������������������������� 23
Hoffman Auto Group��������������������������������������� 41
SEMA Trade Show������������������������������������������� 27
Honda-Acura Wholesale Parts Dealers�33, 34-35
Sorbothane Soft-Blow Mallet�������������������������� 22
Hyundai Wholesale Parts Dealers�������������������� 58
Spanesi Americas������������������������������������������� 19
Infiniti of Norwood������������������������������������������ 28
Steck Manufacturing Company����������������������� 30
Jaguar Land Rover Cherry Hill������������������������� 29
Subaru Wholesale Parts Dealers���������������������� 61
Jeff D’Ambrosio Chrysler-Jeep-Dodge������������ 13
Toyota Wholesale Parts Dealers����������������������� 64
Two Scientists Named Axalta Fellows����������������22
Jeff D’Ambrosio Volkswagen��������������������������� 16
Volkswagen of Kingston���������������������������������� 56
‘Who Pays for What?’ Survey: Some Shops
Volkswagen Group More Than Tripled Electric
KECO Body Repair Products���������������������������� 15
Volkswagen Wholesale Parts Dealers�������������� 63
Car Sales in Q2 2021������������������������������������26
Kia Motors Wholesale Parts Dealers���������������� 57
White Plains Volkswagen�������������������������������� 42
Where Film and Auto Body Shops Collide����������56
Kia of Attleboro����������������������������������������������� 40
Yonkers Kia����������������������������������������������������� 54
Philadelphia CBP Seizes Nearly $300k in Counterfeit Auto Parts from China�����������������23 Say It Isn’t So, Flo: Lawsuit Alleges Progressive Underpays���������������������������������22 Show Organizers Cancel 2021 New York Auto Show, Increased Delta-Variant Measures Force Event’s Hand���������������������������������������14 Tesla Model Y Taxi Fleet from Revel Set for NYC Launch After Regulatory Mix Up�������������10 Volta Charging Announces New Station Installation in Morris Plains, NJ���������������������16 Volvo Trucks Delivers First VNR Electric Truck to Manhattan Beer Distributors���������������������16 WMABA Releases Consumer Guide to Navigating Collision Repair���������������������������20
with Windshield Repair���������������������������������46 GM Class Action Lawsuit Alleges Airbag Failures Kill People����������������������������������������62 GM Has Two New All-Electric Commercial Vehicles In Development�������������������������������45 Here’s What Rivian’s First Service Centers Look Like������������������������������������������������������24 Honda Embraces Long-Term Remote Work Opportunities for U.S. Associates������������������30 How Could Gaming Change the Future of Collision Repair Training?������������������������������52 Hyundai Trunk Latch Recall: Emergency Releases May Fail�����������������������������������������62
New Hall, New Beginning, New SEMA Show�������1
Anderson - Daily Release Meetings a Must
Pro Spot Denver Training Center Open House
for Successful Collision Repair Shops�����������36 Chess - Deciding When Used Parts are Appropriate in the Collision Repair Process���40 Phillips - California MSO Launches Kustomine Software to Help Collision Repairers Work More Efficiently���������������������������������������������58 Yoswick - Why Collision Repair Shops, Insurers Often Disagree on Repair Plans���������������������54
Not Measuring Steering Columns as Called for by OEMs����������������������������������������������������1 1,000-Plus Attend ASE Instructors Training
Aces the Test������������������������������������������������32 Repairify Awarded Patent for Remote Automotive Diagnostics Technology��������������61 SEMA: Economic Outlook Remains Positive, but Supply Constraints and Inflation Loom������1 The Rise of Amazon and How it Impacts the Collision Repair Industry���������������������������������4 Toyota Debuts Mobile Collision Assistance
Kundert Volvo�������������������������������������������������� 20
autobodynews.com / SEPTEMBER 2021 AUTOBODY NEWS 3
The Rise of Amazon and How it Impacts the Collision Repair Industry by David Roberts and Raul Salinas, Focus Advisors Automotive
How much attention do you pay to those ever-present gray vans emblazoned with the Amazon logo? Did you ever stop to think who owns them? And who repairs them? The prevalence of smartphones and quick internet connections has completely and permanently changed the consumer landscape. Among these changes, Amazon has risen to become a firmly established and dominant player in nearly every industry. The e-commerce conglomerate and its promise of two-day deliveries has captured the attention and wallets of an estimated 147 million Prime members throughout the U.S. With so many customers to satisfy, Amazon has had to confront unparalleled logistical challenges. The pandemic-fueled online shopping sprees of American consumers following nationwide mandatory stayat-home orders showed just how reliant we have become on modern day technological solutions to our problems. The perpetually increasing demand for delivered products has led Amazon to reduce its dependence on traditional carriers like USPS, UPS and FedEx. In fact, researchers approximate that in 2020, Amazon delivered 2.5 billion more of its own packages. This represents an increase of more than 100% from 2.3 billion packages delivered through Amazon in 2019. Its approach to generating this delivery supply primarily relies on small businesses and independent contractors to do the work with assistance provided by the advanced software and capabilities of Amazon Logistics (AMZL). Delivery Service Partners, or DSPs, usually operate a few dozen commercial vans and are paid per route completed. The owners are classic small business entrepreneurs, meeting the needs of their clients by staying focused on speed, efficiency and customer service. The commercial vans of choice for DSPs are usually from the make of Amazon partners, e.g., the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter, Ford Transit
and Dodge Promaster. DSPs are permitted to use their own fleet of commercial vans as long as they meet Amazon’s key criteria. Otherwise, most DSPs resort to renting vans from Amazon’s third-party lease partners. How Collision Repairers Play a Role The rising prevalence of privately owned DSPs has direct implications to trends in the collision repair industry. It’s a simple equation: increased use of commercial vans equals increased collision repair and maintenance.
This trend is not only implied, but something we have observed from our clients across the U.S. For some of them, Amazon DSP repairs represent one of the fastest growing segments of their business. To adopt a similar market strategy and capitalize on this growing small fleet segment, shop owners should first identify whether their shop is reasonably near an Amazon distribution center. If a collision repair shop owner operates in a highly populated Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), especially one that is growing rapidly, chances are that there is an Amazon distribution center nearby. Even if a shop owner does not operate in a top MSA, they can still take advantage of this market opportunity by identifying smaller delivery stations that are used for lastmile deliveries. Currently, Amazon is in the process of investing more resources in efforts to expand its network of delivery stations across the U.S. The Need for Speed Downtime costs money for DSP operators. A DSP driver is expected to
4 SEPTEMBER 2021 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com
make more than 30 stops per hour. As a result, drivers work in an expeditious manner that can ultimately cause more wear on the vehicle. Coupled with high mileage rates— and numerous opportunities to incur damage navigating tight spaces, streets and turnarounds—DSPs find their vehicles needing frequent repairs. The speed of repairs is a vitally important variable to getting these vans back on the road and earning revenue for the owners, so pricing of repairs will reflect the premium on fast turnaround. Some shops have
even developed mobile repair capabilities that allow DSPs to minimize downtime for the vans and keep them on the road. For MSOs and shop owners, DSP repairs are a small but growing opportunity to address the needs of small fleet operators with high on demand requirements. When it comes to collision services, DSP vans generally have modest repair requirements, but the work is constant and demands rapid repairs to keep the vehicles on the road. Services typically range from small item replacements like door handles, mirrors and windows to other minor body damage. The Future of Delivery Service Partners As the public shifts preferences towards electric and other fuel-efficient types of vehicles, Amazon is both leading with new technologies and following by rapidly adopting existing models. In 2019, Amazon co-founded The Climate Pledge in its efforts to be net-zero carbon neutral by 2040. Shortly later, Amazon announced its partnership with start-up Rivian, investing $7 million to produce
100,000 electric trucks. As Rivian Prime trucks start hitting the road, one can expect the current DSP program and its operating base to change. Rivian vans will roll out slowly and will likely have proprietary parts. However, it is never too late to start looking for new opportunities. In similar developments, Amazon’s Prime Air program, which is still in the works, aims to provide last-mile drone delivery directly to consumers. This shifts the balance in favor of Amazon by allowing it to control even more of its distribution market share. Who knows whether there will be networks of drone DSPs! Will drone repairs become part of the repair offerings of MSOs? Ultimately, nobody has a crystal ball, but based on what we know, DSPs are still a rapidly growing segment and there is ample room for innovative operators to broaden their offerings. Conclusion DSPs vehicles are an accelerating fleet repair opportunity with high performance requirements and likely full value pricing. As Amazon sets its aim for reducing its dependence on traditional order fulfillment solutions, one can expect its network of distribution centers and last-mile delivery stations to continue expanding throughout the U.S. As a result, more collision shop owners will find themselves repairing Amazon fleet vehicles. By proactively identifying nearby opportunities, shop owners can position their businesses to capture more volume, and ultimately hold more market share in this small but growing repair segment. Source: Focus Advisors Automotive
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autobodynews.com / SEPTEMBER 2021 AUTOBODY NEWS 5
AASP/NJ, WMABA Announce NORTHEAST 2021’s Collision P.R.E.P. Schedule The Alliance of Automotive Service Providers of New Jersey (AASP/ NJ) and the Washington Metropolitan Auto Body Association (WMABA) are pleased to announce the program schedule for this year’s Collision Professional Repairer Education Program (Collision P.R.E.P.), which will be held live and in person at the 2021 NORTHEAST® Automotive Services Show, Sept. 10-12 at the Meadowlands Exposition Center in Secaucus, NJ. After more than a year of virtual educational programs, repair professionals can now fill seats in a classroom setting once again to see and hear from some of the best presenters in the industry. Oregon-based shop owner and educator Ron Reichen, of Precision Body & Paint, is set to travel to New Jersey for the NORTHEAST debut of his course, “Structural Identification for Profitability— Knowing and Understanding Structural Damage.” In light of the demands facing today’s industry, it’s no surprise he intends to use part of his discussion to emphasize the importance of
OEM-recommended/required repair procedures. “It couldn’t be more important than it is now […] You can’t assume [the procedures will be the same] because you did that repair a month ago on the same vehicle,” Reichen said. “You have to pull out that OEM repair procedure again and again, because the manufactur-
their mind,” he said. “That’ll spur a thought in another attendee, and we really get into a good discussion.” The 2021 Collision P.R.E.P. will also feature the return of veteran NORTHEAST presenter John Shoemaker of BASF, who will preside over the Sept. 11 course, “Productive Refinishing Processes.” His presentation will explore how to
ers change them very frequently.” Reichen is excited to finally present in front of actual people as opposed to attempting to get his points across over a computer screen. “In an in-person class as opposed to a Zoom meeting, it just seems like the participants and attendees are more comfortable asking questions as they come to
use proven best practices to maximize paint shop productivity by reducing common shortfalls, minimize paint flaws, improve paint hours per booth cycle and increase overall throughput. After doing dozens of virtual classes throughout the pandemic, Shoemaker is one of many who can’t wait to see live faces again.
“In-person presentations bring a lot more interactions from the attendees,” Shoemaker said. “There are a lot of times when I learn just as much by presenting a course as they do by being at that course, and that’s all because of the attendee involvement. We didn’t get a lot of that by being virtual.” Additionally, Collision P.R.E.P. is set to include a special panel discussion devoted to demystifying the right to appraisal, otherwise known as the appraisal clause. Comprised of both repairers and experts, the candid gathering promises to explore real-world situations with real results—both wins and lessons learned—by those who are deeply involved in this sometimes-taboo topic. For the complete Collision P.R.E.P. schedule and to register, visit wmaba.com/collisionprep. For more information on NORTHEAST, visit the official event website at aaspnjnortheast.com. Source: AASP/NJ
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6 SEPTEMBER 2021 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com
INTRODUCING OUR NEW NORTHEAST DISTRIBUTORS A Message from Ron Olsson, Pro Spot International President It’s with great pleasure that I introduce you to our two new Northeast Distributors, Centerline and Collision Tools, as our only authorized distributors in the region. We’re proud to partner with such quality companies who have been leaders in the collision repair industry for 30 plus years. I’m also very proud of our team and our current product offerings that have been leading our industry for so many years. Knowing what we have in development and the new technologies that we are working on, we will continue to revolutionize the collision repair industry for many years to come. And it means so much to all of us at Pro Spot to be being a “Made in America” manufacturer because of the competitive advantage that this brings. As your trusted collision repair partner in the Northeast region for 30 years, we’ve been through a lot together and today, we’re stronger than ever. Know that you have my personal commitment that we will never disappoint you and we will never let you down. We appreciate your business and know that we are behind you 100%. In closing, please make sure to verify that your welders are registered with Pro Spot and that your warranty is active and up to date with our authorized distributors. Don’t hesitate to contact our team, or me directly and let’s continue to build the future together!
Meet our new distributors at NORTHEAST Trade Show September 10th - 12th, 2021 BOOTH #437
Sincerely Ron Olsson, President
Contact Us Today! Long Island, NY, Eastern PA, NJ www.centerlinespraybooths.com firstname.lastname@example.org 631-841-3200
New England: CT, MA, NH, VT, ME www.collisiontoolsinc.com email@example.com 855-219-2022
Pro Spot International, Inc. 5932 Sea Otter Place Carlsbad, CA 92010 firstname.lastname@example.org 877-PRO-SPOT www.prospot.com
autobodynews.com / SEPTEMBER 2021 AUTOBODY NEWS 7
NABC Recycled Rides Program, Partners Donate Refurbished Vehicles to 4 NJ Veterans On July 21, four deserving New Jersey veterans were presented with refurbished vehicles to provide them independence and the ability to work and take care of their families, thanks to the National Auto Body Council (NABC) Recycled Rides program along with car donor GEICO and collision repair partners Caliber Collision Centers, Ray Mees Auto Coach and Cherry Hill Collision Center. The presentation was held in conjunction with the NABC® Garden State Pars for Cars Golf Fundraiser at Mountain View Golf Club in Ewing Township, NJ. The veterans were selected by New Jersey Veteran’s Network. This event marks some 2,750 vehicles presented by NABC, including nearly 40 in the Trenton/ Princeton/Ewing Township area, and more than 370 vehicles donated by GEICO. “What an honor to recognize four deserving veterans and, along with our NABC members, present them with refurbished vehicles that provide them independence and the ability to work and care for their families,” said Bill Garoutte, president and CEO of the NABC. “Many thanks to GEICO for donating all four vehicles and to the collision repair shops for restoring them to like-new condition. To hear these veterans share their stories and the impact these vehicles will have on their lives is truly inspirational.” Shawn Mangin, a U.S. Army veteran who served as a gunner and infantryman, received a 2016 Hyundai Sonata donated by GEICO and refurbished by Cherry Hill Collision Center. After his service in the Army, he supports a natural disaster response team.
“This will help me get the independence that I once had,” said Mangin. “The New Jersey Veterans Network really came through for me and helped me out when I needed them. Now, I try to dedicate as much time to them as I can.”
Dina Bowers, who served in the U.S. Navy on a submarine, received a 2018 Toyota Corolla donated by GEICO and repaired by Ray Mees Auto Coach. With an 18-yearold adopted daughter and challenges with chronic pain and mobility, a reliable car will make her life much easier. “Thanks to everyone who had anything to do with this. God bless you,” said Bowers. “This means so much to me. I’ve always bought secondhand cars that are not very reliable. I volunteer with my church and take people to appointments, church and other activities, but it was hard with an unreliable car. Having a 2018 car is just amazing. Thank you!” Pedro Muriel is a U.S. Army veteran who served several tours of duty but faced challenges when he returned home. Today, he is the single father of four boys and works to give back to other veterans in need. He received a 2017 Hyundai Elantra donated by GEICO and refurbished by Caliber Collision Pennsauken. “Thank you to everyone who had a hand in this,” said Muriel.
“Thank you to Michael Boll from the Veteran’s Network. That guy is amazing. This means a lot to me. As a single father, not having a reliable car makes it hard to get around. But I don’t make excuses, I do what I have to do as a dad. This will help me out tremendously and I will pay it forward. This will allow me opportunity to help more veterans.” Hazel Rogers was presented a 2018 Hyundai Elantra donated by GEICO and repaired by Caliber Collision Pennington. She served in the U.S. Army as a cook stationed primarily in Germany. Without a reliable vehicle today, she is challenged to care for her family and herself. “This car is an incredible gift,” said Rogers. “Not only will it give me a way to get back and forth to medical appointments and such. My daughter is in college and I try to go see her once a semester. We’ve had quite a bit of struggles the last year and I lost my dad to COVID. This will help us get back to our life. Thank you to anybody who had anything to do with repairing this vehi-
8 SEPTEMBER 2021 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com
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cle. This is life changing.” The lead technician who handled the repairs for both of the Caliber Collision locations, Thomas Adams, donates his time and talents to repair NABC Recycled Rides for a special cause—his late father-inlaw, who perished at Pearl Harbor. He has worked on four NABC Recycled Rides. “I do this for my father-in-law,” said Adams. “He was awarded a Bronze Star for his bravery, and want to help other veterans by honoring my wife’s father.” NABC Recycled Rides is a unique program in which businesses representing all facets of the collision repair industry team up to repair and donate vehicles to individuals and families in need of reliable transportation. Since the inception of the NABC Recycled Rides program in 2007, members of the NABC have donated more than 2,600 vehicles valued at more than $36 million.
How Waterborne Technology Can Improve Cycle Time Performance The number of color coats required to make a refinish repair is one
it can significantly reduce sprayouts. Comprised of thousands of
primary consideration for evaluating the throughput performance
variant and prime color chips, each chip is sprayed with actual
of a refinish paint system. Yet, as most know, the most accurate
waterborne paint. “The color deck is ‘dead-on’,” says Jeff Smith of
way to vet a system’s productivity is to evaluate the entire refinish
Pro Collision, Grand Rapids, Michigan. “If the color is in the deck,
process – from color identification, right on through to the final
there’s no need to do a sprayout, like we always had to perform with
clearcoat. As example, PPG’s waterborne refinish system incorpo-
our previous system.”
rates a host of features designed to speed cycle time performance. Blending Performance Given that refinishing most often calls for blending, how efficient a system can perform an accurate repair and eliminate chances for re-dos is especially critical to achieving maximum cycle time performance. PPG’s waterborne system employs an easy, one-gun process designed to achieve a fast, tight blend and accurate match the first time out. In fact, in a 2-3 coat application, it’s possible to perform a spot repair in less than an hour.
This fast blend process is aided by a very thin film build,
enabling the basecoat to dry fast. Only 2-3 minutes flash time is needed between coats and the clearcoat can be applied in 1015 minutes. The system’s EN-V® Series clearcoat line offers fast bake times as short as 10 minutes. Color ID and Matching Efficiency
To ensure color accuracy, the basecoat’s latex particles orient
The throughput of a refinish system must include its color-match-
metallic flakes smoothly to accurately match the color travel from
ing ability. Afterall, if the color doesn’t match, how fast the repair
face to flop. Painters won’t find any evidence of mottling or halos
was achieved won’t matter. In this regard, PPG has heavily invested
around the repair, which can appear using conventional basecoats.
in ensuring the ENVIROBASE® High Performance waterborne
Any dirt or specks can be easily de-nibbed, further facilitating a
basecoat system delivers color-matching excellence. Its color
fast blend repair.
variance program is one example of this commitment.
Since color variants to OEM prime colors are an everyday
from color identification to final clearcoat—the Envirobase High
challenge for identifying a correct formula, those identified by
Performance system covers all the bases to achieve the cycle time
PPG’s color variance team are quickly incorporated into PPG’s
performance demanded by today’s high-production collision centers.
To summarize, when evaluating throughput performance—
comprehensive color formula database. Formulas are updated daily through PPG’s PAINTMANAGER® XI color software. In the long run, the daily update of the database saves the technician valuable time searching for the right color formula.
Another real time saver is the Chromatic Variant Deck since autobodynews.com / SEPTEMBER 2021 AUTOBODY NEWS 9
Tesla Model Y Taxi Fleet from Revel Set for NYC Launch After Regulatory Mix Up by Joey Klender, Teslarati
Revel, a New York City-based ridesharing company, will launch its fleet of Tesla Model Y taxis in the Big Apple in early August after a mix-up with NYC’s regulatory agency, the Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC). The approved and soon-tobelaunched fleet of Model Y taxis will hit New York City streets Aug. 2, according to Revel executives. In mid-June, it was reported by several news media outlets the NYC TLC had successfully blocked the inclusion of Revel’s Tesla Model Y taxis, citing a stoppage on issuing new-for-hire taxi licenses for electric cars. However, the story was blown widely out of proportion through what TLC spokesperson Allan Fromberg called “a giant game of telephone.” In reality, the city placed a capacity limitation on the number of approved taxi licenses in 2018, halting the issuance of new taxi licenses for all vehicles, not just electric ones. Cries of conspiracy floated
through the EV community, failing to accept the unfortunate verdict placed upon Revel’s all-electric, sustainable fleet of taxi cabs donning the notorious Tesla “T.” However, the TLC has granted Revel 49 licenses, according to Fromberg, covering all but one vehicle in the company’s Model Y fleet. Of the 49, 15 have been inspected and approved for operation as early as the first week of August. The New York Daily News, which initially covered the story, said 35 others will roll out when they are inspected and approved for ride-hailing services. The fleet will operate south of 42nd Street in Manhattan, stretching down to the tip of the island. Revel told Teslarati it will consider growing into other neighborhoods and boroughs once the company has more of an idea of where the fleet is being used most frequently. The company will also open a Superhub in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn, with 25 Level 3 chargers. This will make it the largest universal fast charging depot in the Americas, the company said.
10 SEPTEMBER 2021 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com
The addition of Revel’s 49 Model Ys broadens New York City’s small fleet of electrified taxis. 120,000 licensed vehicles already navigate through the city’s five boroughs, and there is not room for many more cars. However, the TLC is fully supportive of a transition to electrification, and it expects several agencies to make a more conscious effort toward introducing electric powertrains in the coming years. “The TLC is fully committed to a 100% electrified future, just not at the cost of additional congestion,” Fromberg told Teslarati. For Revel, it has been a long and drawn-out process. The company’s attempts to gain licenses for its Model Y fleet started in March. After the 5-to-1 vote that approved the banishment of the EV exemption for taxis, Revel’s already-submitted applications were ultimately approved. A company spokesperson told Tesarati that Revel did not anticipate the approval of the licenses. Fromberg, who has been the
TLC’s deputy chief of public relations for several years, said the agency was legally required to review and process Revel’s applications because they were submitted prior to June 25, three days after the vote took place. “Revel applied for a base license in the late spring and submitted applications for electric cars ahead of the June 22 vote. The Yellow Taxi market is rebounding and ridership has increased steadily since the city’s reopening,” Fromberg told Teslarati. Revel CEO Frank Reig said, “The initial response from the public has been overwhelming, and we can’t wait to start serving New Yorkers who care as much about the city’s future as we do. With our all-electric rideshare fleet and fast-charging Superhub network, we’re investing in a zero-carbon transportation future. We’d like to thank Commissioner Jarmoszuk and the TLC for supporting New York City’s climate goals, and working with us to get the city’s first all-electric, all-employee driven fleet on the road.”
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CT Police Department Says Moving To Tesla Model 3 Brought Big Savings by Andrei Nedelea, Inside EVs
We’ve covered stories about several police departments switching from older gas cars straight to Teslas, usually Model 3s, but now we’re starting to hear about the benefits they offer over ICEs. Aside from from the performance and no tailpipe emissions, it turns out a Model 3 is considerably less of a financial burden once purchased. Yes, EVs are still more expensive to buy outright, but according to The EV Club of Connecticut, they are actually cheaper to run and maintain in the long run. It analyzed data from the Westport Police Department, which purchased its first Tesla Model 3 in late 2019, putting it into active service in January 2020. The police department’s existing fleet consisted of Ford Explorer SUVs that cost around $37,000 to buy, compared to the Tesla Model 3’s $52,290 acquisition price. That’s a $15,290 difference, but based on information supplied in the source article, the Model 3
ended up saving them money. Between the lower customization cost, savings on fuel and lower maintenance, it was calculated a Model 3 would end up costing the police department $95,800 all in after four years. Compare that to the estimated $120,200 needed to buy, modify, maintain and run a Ford Explorer—that’s a $24,400 difference, or savings of $6,100 per year. Westport Chief of Police Foti Koskinas said they got help from Tesla to adapt the Model 3s for police use. He pointed out Tesla has been a great partner, including re-coding where necessary. “We would not have been able to do things like wire the electronics into the large battery or access the car’s computer without their help,” Koskinas said. “Feedback from the public has been overwhelmingly positive,” Koskinas continued. “We’ve have been contacted by at least 50 other police departments—from all over the world—with questions about our experience. I know many of them have gone on to purchase
Teslas for their fleets.” It is worth noting the pilot vehicle, bought in late 2019, only cost $14,300 to customize and the customization cost will more than double for future Model 3s bought for police duty—presumably because outside help was provided
for free since it was a pilot vehicle. Even so, it will still be marginally cheaper to convert than the Ford Explorer. The Westport department intends to purchase another Model 3. It also operates a BMW i3, though not for patrol duty like the Tesla.
Continued from Cover
Economic Outlook prices in June compared to 2020. While economists expect inflationary pressures like this to be short-term, it is weighing on consumer minds. Employment in the sectors hardest hit by the pandemic continues to improve, especially leisure and travel. Average hourly earnings are also up, suggesting employers are having to offer higher wages to attract workers. COVID-19 cases have also risen in recent weeks. If outbreaks emerge more broadly, economic activity may slow down. Want to learn more about the economic factors shaping our industry? Download the new July Industry Indicators report today at www. sema.org/research. Source: SEMA
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autobodynews.com / SEPTEMBER 2021 AUTOBODY NEWS 13 7/20/21 9:13 AM
Show Organizers Cancel 2021 New York Auto Show, Increased Delta-Variant Measures Force Event’s Hand It is with great disappointment the upcoming 2021 New York International Automobile Show at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center has been cancelled due to the growing incidences of the COVID-19 Delta variant and the increased measures announced recently by state and local officials to stop its spread.
We are enormously appreciative of the automobile industry’s tremendous response and commitment in participating in an August New York Auto Show, and especially for the overwhelming involvement in the new EV Test Fest, complete with an entire floor dedicated to electric vehicles and four indoor EV test tracks. Eight years ago, New York decided to introduce show attendees
to electric vehicles by organizing its first EV test drive. Large scale adoption of EVs back in 2013 was questionable, but the program was a success and helped pave the way for future events. Auto shows have always been an opportunity to showcase an industry on the move and the New York Show is proud to be part of that heritage. As custodians of the 121-yearold New York Auto Show, we are committed to providing a safe environment for everyone including attendees, exhibitors and the thousands of men and women who put the Show together. Over the past few weeks, and especially within the last few days, circumstances have changed making it more difficult to create an event at the high standard that we and our clients expect. At the onset of planning for the August Show, we were increasingly excited at the prospect of hosting the event as the number of vaccinations in New York continued to climb and mask-wearing reduced the spread in the city. All signs were positive, and the show was coming
together stronger than ever, but today is a different story. Each year, attendees rely on auto shows to help make important buying decisions, spending an average of almost five hours at the exhibition, with nearly 72% of those visitors indicating that they are in the market to purchase a vehicle over the next 12 months. We fully appreciate and acknowledge how important auto shows are to the automakers, retail new car and truck dealers and the public alike, and we strongly believe in the future of these valuable marketing events. The COVID pandemic has challenged our city, the country and the entire world, but just like the automobile industry, we know the New York Auto Show will rebound and be bigger and better than before. We firmly believe that will be the case when the show returns to its regular spring schedule in April 2022. Stay safe. Source: Statement from Mark Schienberg, president, New York Auto Show
General Motors Names Global Leads
General Motors announced the appointment of Kent Helfrich as vice president, Global Research and Development, chief technology officer and president, GM Ventures; and Omar Vargas as vice president and head of Global Public Policy. Both appointments were effective Aug. 1. Helfrich is currently executive director, Advanced Technology and Partnerships. He replaces Matt Tsien, who has elected to retire after 45 years with the company. Vargas was most recently senior vice president and chief Government Affairs officer for 3M Company. Vargas held multiple government affairs positions at 3M between 2017 and 2021, including being named senior vice president and chief Government Affairs officer in April 2021. Source: GM
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Volvo Trucks Delivers First VNR Electric Truck to Manhattan Beer Distributors
Volta Charging Announces New Station Installation in Morris Plains, NJ
Volvo Trucks North America on Aug. 12 delivered its first Class 8, battery-electric regional hauling truck on the East Coast to its customer Manhattan Beer Distributors. Five zero-emission Volvo VNR Electric trucks are joining the New York City-based beer and beverage distributors’ fleet of more than 400 delivery trucks to service customers throughout New York City, Long Island and the surrounding counties. Manhattan Beer Distributors commemorated the delivery with an Aug. 12 press event co-hosted by the New York City Department of Transportation at its distribution warehouse in the Bronx. “Volvo Trucks commends Manhattan Beer Distributors for continuing two decades of leadership in bringing the most advanced and sustainable commercial trucks to New York City,” said Peter Voorhoeve, president of Volvo Trucks North America. “By working together with customers like Manhattan Beer Distributors that are dedicated to reducing their environmental impact, Volvo Trucks has
Volta Industries, Inc., an industry leader in commerce-centric electric vehicle charging networks, announced it has further extended its market penetration with the installation of new charging stations at Stop & Shop in New Jersey.
been able to make meaningful progress on the path toward widescale commercial deployment of VNR Electrics from coast to coast.” Driven by a goal of reducing the company’s environmental impact, Manhattan Beer Distributors began building its low-emission fleet in the ‘90s, which today includes more than 160 Volvo VNR and VNL CNG Class 8 trucks, which will soon be joined by five new Volvo VNR Electrics. To support the charging of its battery-electric fleet, Manhattan Beer Distributors has installed three Level 3 DC fast chargers at its Bronx facility that can fully recharge its Volvo VNR Electric trucks up to 80% in 70 minutes. Manhattan Beer Distributors’ battery-electric trucks were the first Volvo VNR Electric models to enter full serial production at Volvo Trucks’ New River Valley manufacturing plant in Dublin, VA, which assembles all Volvo trucks sold in North America. Source: Volvo Trucks North America
The exact address of these charging stations is 245 Littleton Road, Morris Plains, NJ 07950. Founded on the premise that the electrification of mobility is likely to be a transformational shift, Volta Charging builds and operates a nationwide EV charging network that has among the best use per station in the EV charging industry for the U.S. Centered around capturing
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new spending habits expected to result from the shift to electric vehicles, Volta Charging seeks to transform the fueling industry by building open-network charging stations in locations where drivers already spend their time and money, including grocery stores, pharmacies and other retail locations. The new charging stations at Stop & Shop furthers Volta Charging’s mission to build a convenient, simple and delightful charging infrastructure that is seamlessly incorporated into a driver’s everyday experience. This station joins other recently announced locations in Volta Charging’s New Jersey network, including in the town of Westfield and at the Bergen County Zoo. Source: Volta
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Continued from Cover
New SEMA Show still present that can affect the show. West Hall was an expansion project which had plans to start construction as early as 2017. So, we have been conducting scenario plans on how to manage our use of that facility for the last four years. We got lucky because when the pandemic hit, the expansion was already underway and fully funded. So, we knew that we were going to use this new space this year, to expand our total campus and allow us the opportunity to make our floor a little more efficient to navigate for our attendees and really make a great presentation to the industry.
Is the collision repair section going to move for 2021?
Yes, the collision and tools companies are going to be located in the Upper South Hall this year. The addition of West Hall gave us the opportunity to reconfigure some of our sections and realign
some of them, which enabled us to combine business categories that we think will complement each other well, as well as allowing for growth in the future. So, when we reassigned some of the show’s sections, the collision and tools categories were partnered together because of their affinity for each other, and moved them up to the Upper South Hall. It worked out very well, because we can use the adjacent meeting rooms located there for our collision-specific programming. Everything you need―products, exhibitors, educational offerings― will be right there conveniently located in close proximity. This way, both our attendees and exhibitors can be more efficient and get more business done during the four days of SEMA. The beauty of what we have set up is the fact that our tools and collision sections are right above the wheel and tire sections. Those four sections align very well and are directly adjacent to the Renaissance Hotel. Our hope is that people will be able to have a home base during the show, so that they can cover more and have a better experience.
Overall, the new West Hall has allowed us to spread out our campus and make navigation easier while allowing us to showcase some of the finest aspects of the collision repair industry.
Who will be there and who won’t?
One of the main changes this year will be the fact that international companies without a pathway in the U.S. will have less levels of participation as compared to the past. Conversely, we’re getting a ton of support domestically, so it depends on the company and what their travel plans are, but for the most part, we’re going to have a robust show that will be well-attended and well-received. All of the big OEs that have attended in the past are back and most of the major players in the collision repair industry are also returning. In some areas, we are designating new categories to give them a start at the show. If we see that they’re gaining traction, we’ll incorporate them into an existing area or creating a new one.
It’s an exciting time, with things like ADAS and electric vehicles, so those are two areas that we are watching carefully, so that we can be there on the cutting edge with the right exhibitors and appropriate educational offerings.
Safety is always a factor, but even more so this year because of the pandemic. Please tell us how you’re approaching this huge part of the puzzle for SEMA 2021?
We take our role seriously because we know that SEMA impacts almost every aspect of the automotive industry worldwide. Many of the things that appear at a SEMA Show will affect the industry for the next three to five years, so we realize the importance of the show. The local and federal municipalities last year hindered our plans for 2020, but this year we’re seeing a different environment and we’re more optimistic now than ever. We are working very closely with the people at the Convention Center, the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (LVCVA), the State
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of Nevada and Clark County, just to make sure so that we are well aware of their plans. That way all of us, including exhibitors and attendees can make plans accordingly. Right now, we are not required to check everyone’s temperature in Clark County before entering the event. But we want to make sure that we’re adhering to everything they will ask us to do now and in the future. The Clark County Commission is calling all of the shots, so we are observing other shows, and formulating our processes based on that. As we get closer to the show date, we have a few plans holstered and ready to go. Once the Clark County Commission recommends their plan, we will start to reveal our safety and security plan. Every year, we learn more about how to promote the safest environment we can and allow people to get in and out to the show in the most efficient and convenient way possible.
What are some other changes that we will see at SEMA 2021?
way, but we determined that it would be burdensome and not practical on many levels. So, we decided to take some of our main aisles and broaden them, so that people can get more space and move around in a more suitable manner. So, you will find some wider aisles this year and more aisle space altogether. We are also creating other areas where if people want to step out of the flow of traffic for a moment to regroup or find that next booth, they can do that. For those who want to travel, we will now have access to an underground transit system that was invented by Elon Musk’s The Boring Company, with 60 cars running continuously. It will be able to move a lot of people to one of three stations, South Hall, West Hall and Central Hall. Eventually, this system will be operated autonomously and take people to the Las Vegas Strip, Downtown Las Vegas and the airport as well. It will take a 15– to 20-minute walk and turn it into a two- to five-minute trip, so we are excited about it.
Last year, we looked at the idea of making all of the aisles one-
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WMABA Releases Consumer Guide to Navigating Collision Repair The Washington Metropolitan Auto Body Association (WMABA) published a new guide to help consumers take control of their collision repair experience in a way that keeps their families safer following an accident. “Due to rapidly evolving technologies and advanced safety systems in vehicles, the repair process has become much more complex,” said Jordan Hendler, WMABA executive director. “Consumers are facing disparities in what the repairer and insurance company is telling them is correct for their car. We see this guide as a way to empower consumers to ask questions for themselves.” Following the steps in this consumer guide improves the likelihood of a repair completed according to Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) documented repair procedures. It also encourages consumers to ask questions about their estimate, and to take a proactive approach with all parties.
“WMABA recognizes the stress and lack of straight forward information regarding collision repair and insurance claims,” said President Steven Krieps. “Consumers are already stressed following an accident and dealing with a world they have never even thought about can be overwhelming. We wanted to help them through the process in a way that keeps the safety of their families at the forefront.” “Repairers need to share this information with their customers,” Hendler added. “This guide helps them understand the process, know they chose the right facility for their needs and actively be involved to protect the safety of their family.” To learn more about the new consumer guide, go to https:// wmaba.com/consumer-information/ Source: WMABA
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Say It Isn’t So, Flo: Lawsuit Alleges Progressive Underpays by Rebecca Barnabi, glassBYTEs.com
Two New Yorkers filed suit against Progressive Corp. on July 22, alleging the car insurer is underpaying and arbitrarily undervaluing claims by New York policyholders for totaled vehicles by deceptively adjusting the claims process. Plaintiffs Dominick Volino of Duchess County and John Plotts of Wayne County said “the insurer’s practice to determine a vehicle’s value after a total loss shorts policyholders on what they are actually owed for their lost property.” “When valuing total loss claims for vehicles, it is improper for an automobile insurance company, such as Progressive, to undervalue and underpay the claims by manipulating the data used to determine the actual cash value of the vehicles,” the drivers said. According to the suit filed in New York on July 22, the practice is contrary to appraisal standards and violates New York law. “Progressive systemically thumbs the scale when calculating the actual cash value of claimants’ loss vehicles by applying so-called ‘Projected Sold Adjustments’ that are: (a) deceptive and unexplained; (b) contrary to appraisal standards and methodologies; (c) not based in fact, as they are contrary to the used car industry’s market pricing and inventory management practices; (d) not applied by the major competitor of Progressive’s vendor Mitchell; and (e) on information and belief, not ap-
plied by Progressive and Mitchell to insureds in other states like California,” reads the complaint. Volino and Plotts estimate more than 100 putative class members exist, and the aggregate compensatory damages claimed by them and the class are estimated at more than $5 million. Volino’s Nautic blue metallic 2004 Volvo was declared a total loss after a car accident in January 2021. Plotts’ Phantom-black tri-coat Pearl 2013 Chrysler was declared a total loss by Progressive after a car accident in September 2020. According to the New Yorkers, Progressive promised to pay them actual cash value to buy replacements. Mitchell International Inc. vehicle valuation reports were used by Progressive during the settlement process, according to the suit. Similar vehicles were compared with Volino’s and Plotts’ totaled vehicles to determine values, however, “comparisons against similar cars that were sold in the month the original vehicle was totaled unfairly cuts into the drivers’ payouts because it incorporates consumer behavior, such as negotiating a lower price,” the lawsuit states. The adjustments by Progressive resulted in a “significant” reduction of base values on vehicles comparable to Volino’s and Plotts’, which lowered the payout of the claims. The lawsuit alleges Volino was underpaid by $585, and Plotts’ claim could have been $800 more without
the Progressive adjustment. “Were it not for this deceptive and improper adjustment, the ‘base value’ in each valuation report would have been higher, resulting in a higher ‘settlement value’ and in turn a higher payment by Progressive for actual cash value,” the lawsuit states. The lawsuit states “In truth, Progressive’s Projected Sold Adjustments do not reflect market realities (the context in which ‘consumer behavior’ occurs) and run contrary to customary automobile dealer practices and inventory management, where list prices are priced to market to reflect the intense competition in the context of internet pricing and comparison shopping. A negotiated price discount would be highly atypical and therefore is not proper to include in determining actual cash value.” The plaintiffs allege inclusion of this significant downward adjustment purportedly to “reflect consumer purchasing behavior” is particularly improper in the context of this action—insureds who have
suffered a total loss of their vehicle and need to procure a replacement and have limited time to search out the illusory opportunity to obtain the below-market deal Progressive assumes always exists without any explanation or support.” The suit also alleges Progressive does not explain nor provide data to support downward adjustment to affected policyholders, including Volino and Plotts. A disclosure on the final page of valuation reports is the only statement by Progressive on the adjustment. Volino and Plotts seek approval of the class action suit and damages awarded to policyholders within the class, and also ask the court to order Progressive to stop using projected sold adjustment to determine actual cash value of total loss vehicles. They also demand a trial by jury. (C) 2021 by glassbytes.com. Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved. For more information contact www.glassbytes.com.
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LMP to Acquire Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram Dealership in New York
Philadelphia CBP Seizes Nearly $300k in Counterfeit Auto Parts from China
LMP Automotive Holdings, Inc., an e-commerce and facilities-based automotive retailer in the U.S., on July 26 announced its entry into a definitive acquisition agreement for a Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram
Distracted drivers aren’t the only vehicle threats on our nation’s highways. Count the proliferation of counterfeit vehicle parts as potential safety hazards too. U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers in Philadelphia seized a counterfeit Chinese cache of vehicle parts July 14 destined to an address in Feasterville-Trevose, PA. The shipment arrived June 4 and consisted of 5,657 pieces that included vehicle door locks, hinges, powered mirrors, steering wheel switches, headlights and taillights, grills, rear bumpers and paint kits. CBP officers suspected the auto parts to be counterfeit and detained them. Officers consulted with CBP’s automotive experts at the agency’s Centers of Excellence and Expertise who worked with trademark holders and confirmed July 7 the automotive parts were counterfeit. Officers completed the seizure July 14. The manufacturer’s suggested retail price of the automotive parts is $295,052. “Unscrupulous repair shops andgreedy internet vendors that
in adjusted EBITDA or $0.26 per share in 2022. “This acquisition will further expand our management team and Northeast footprint,” said Richard Aldahan, LMP’s COO. “We
“This acquisition will further expand our management team and Northeast footprint,” — Richard Aldahan dealership in New York, along with the associated real estate, generating approximately $80 million in annualized revenue and $2.6 million in adjusted EBITDA. The deal is expected to close in the fourth quarter of this year. The purchase price of approximately $11 million for goodwill and $8.2 million for the associated real estate is expected to be funded through a combination of cash on LMP’s balance sheet, $5.6 million in common stock and debt financing. The acquisition is expected to add approximately $2.6 million
intend to continue expanding aggressively in this region as we are seeing a record amount of interest in our dealer partner model.” “This acquisition, combined with our previously announced acquisitions, would bring LMP’s total franchise and dealership count to 26 and 22, respectively, with consolidated annualized revenue, adjusted EBITDA and adjusted EBITDA per share run rate expected to be approximately $1.3 billion, $85 million and $7.82, respectively,” said Sam Tawfik, LMP’s CEO. Source: LMP Automotive Holdings, Inc.
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value profits over safety place motorists in severe peril,” said Keith Fleming, CBP’s acting director of field operations in Baltimore. “Customs and Border Protection officers will continue to intercept counterfeited or pirated goods because we want consumers to be confident in knowing that the products that they purchase are safe for themselves and their families.” CBP encourages consumers to protect themselves and their families by always purchasing safe, authentic goods from reputable vendors. CBP protects businesses and consumers every day through an aggressive Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) enforcement program. Importation of counterfeit merchandise can cause significant revenue loss, damage the U.S. economy and threaten the health and safety of the American people. On a typical day in 2020, CBP officers seized $3.6 million worth of products with Intellectual Property Rights violations. Source: CBP
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‘Who Pays for What?’ are at least getting paid for it “some of the time.” “I’d like to see those numbers improve, but I’m also hoping the surveys raise shops’ awareness of the safety inspections they need to be doing,” Anderson said. The latest quarterly “Who Pays for What?” survey, slated to end July 30, focuses on “not-included” frame and mechanical labor operations. Shops can take the survey at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/ L3H3JQP Anderson said the survey, which will take about 15-20 min-
utes, can be completed by anyone in a shop familiar with the shop’s billing practices and the payment practices of at least some of the largest national insurers. Each shop’s individual responses are held in the strictest confidence; only aggregated data is released. Survey participants receive a free report with complete survey findings along with analysis and resources to help shops better understand and use the information presented. The results of previous surveys are also available online at https:// www.crashnetwork.com/collision advice Source: CRASH Network
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Here’s What Rivian’s First Service Centers Look Like by Dan Mihalascu, Inside EVs
With deliveries of the R1T pickup and R1S SUV coming in September and later in the fall, respectively, Rivian is offering customers a preview of its service centers. In a post on Twitter, the EV startup shared photos of service centers located in Brooklyn, NY, Bellevue, WA, Normal, IL, and San Francisco and El Segundo, CA.
While the workshop area looks pretty traditional with elevators and other specific equipment, the customer waiting areas appear airy and cozy, with Rivian saying it has “brought the inspiration of the outdoors” to its inside spaces. In several comments on the post, Rivian has offered some details about these centers and how they will serve customers.
“While most repairs can be done by our Mobile Service vans right at your home or office, we can also pick up and bring your vehicle to a Rivian Service Center and return it to you, all with a flexible loaner program.” The EV manufacturer added service centers would also prepare brand-new Rivian vehicles for delivery and install accessories on them. Unsurprisingly, the five previewed locations are located in or close to metropolitan areas. However, Rivian says as production of the R1T and R1S ramps up, so too will its network of service centers. According to the company, locations across the country are opening this year, “with many more coming online in 2022.” Asked by a commenter about its showrooms, the automaker replied 10 Rivian Experience Centers are opening across the country this year, with details on locations and hours to become available later. Until then, prospective customers will be able to get a look at the R1S and R1T in September, when Rivian kicks off its Demo Drive tour.
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Volkswagen Group More Than Tripled Electric Car Sales in Q2 2021 by Mark Kane, Inside EVs
The Volkswagen Group, which includes Volkswagen, Audi, Porsche, Skoda, SEAT and more, reported accelerating sales of plug-in electric cars in the second quarter of 2021. In Q2 2021, the total global plug-in deliveries exceeded 342,000, split 50/50 between all-electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles: BEVs: about 110,991 (up 259.7% year-over-year from 30,857) PHEVs: about 97,926 (up 227% yearover-year from about 29,909) Total: about 208,917 (up 244% yearover-year from about 60,700) Plug-in car sales—H1 2021 Thanks to a strong Q1 2021, the total in the first half of the year is: BEVs: about 170,939 (up 165.2% year-over-year from 64,462) PHEVs: about 171,300 (up 204% year-over-year from 56,303) Total: about 342,239 (up 183% yearover-year from 120,755) The high growth rate is directly related to multiple new BEV launches and according to the Volkswagen
Group, the momentum will continue in the second half of the year. Currently, the group sells about half the number of EVs that Tesla sells, but the growth rate suggests it will be bigger within six to 18 months. For comparison, in 2020 the group sold more than 422,000 plugins. All-electric car sales by market—H1 2021 Europe is so far the largest market for Volkswagen Group’s BEVs: Europe: 128,078 (74.9%) and 26% market share U.S.: 18,514 (10.8%) and 9% market share (higher than ICE) China: 18,285 (10.7%) Others: 6,062 (3.6%) Total: 170,939 “In the third quarter, we expect a significant boost to BEV deliveries in China thanks to the expanded Volkswagen ID. model range,” said Christian Dahlheim, head of group sales. All-electric car sales by brand—H1 2021
Basically, all the brands are pushing forward: Volkswagen (cars): 92,859 (up 182.4% year-over-year; share: 54.3%) Audi: 32,775 (up 69.3% year-overyear; share: 19.2%) Porsche: 19,822 (up 342.2% yearover-year; share: 11.6%) Skoda: 17,697 (up 257.2% yearover-year; share: 10.4%) SEAT: 6,172 (up 186.4% year-overyear; share: 3.6%) Volkswagen (commercial vehicles): 1,164 ( up 117.2% yearover-year) Other (MAN): 450 (up 368.8% yearover-year) Total: 170,939 (up 165.2% yearover-year) Top 5 all-electric cars—H1 2021 Volkswagen ID.4: 37,292 (6,230 in the U.S.) Volkswagen ID.3: 31,177 Audi e-tron (incl. Sportback): 25,794 (6,884 in the U.S.) Porsche Taycan (incl. Cross Turismo): 19,822 (5,367 in the U.S.) Volkswagen e-up!: 17,890
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Manufacturers are moving away from the use of mild steel for a couple of reasons. First, they want to improve fuel economy in response to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)’s Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards, which regulate how far vehicles must travel on a gallon of fuel. The current requirement is for automakers to raise the average fuel efficiency of new cars and trucks to 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025.
With an increased focus on manufacturing electric and hybrid vehicles, lightweight materials are
being used to offset the weight of the batteries. Many people believe electric cars are lightweight because they don’t have an engine, but lithium-ion batteries are really heavy. According to a study conducted by a global transportation company named Kar-Tainer, the company found that if you look at the average weight of an internal combustion vehicle versus an electric one, the electric vehicle on average was a little over 400 pounds heavier. Lithium-ion batteries have a low energy density ratio. In order to produce the kind of range and performance and be competitive in the market, you have to have a large battery. Until we get to the point where we’re using solid-state battery technology with a higher energy density, this will be the case for some time. The shift away from steel is also about improving crashworthiness. A university study compared structural aluminum to mild steel, which has been used in structural applications for an extended time. They found that aluminum absorbed twice the crash energy than steel.
Can you tell us about the trend toward lightweight materials and if it’s expected to continue in the future?
The use of lightweight materials has ramped up over the last decade. When I worked in a body shop in 2008, the incidents of aluminum in our facility were minimal. By the time I left in 2012, it was becoming more common. Looking at Mitchell data from our estimating customers, we see a couple of percentage points growth every year in terms of the major component parts constructed of these types of materials. Looking ahead, it is predicted that this trend will continue to evolve. A study conducted by IHS Markit showed that over the next 10 years, we’re going to see highstrength steels have higher percentage content in vehicles than mild steels. Higher tensile strength steels are fired at higher temperatures, which produces more rigidity, so the material is not only lighter, but also stronger.
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How is this shift expected to impact collision repairers?
As manufacturers continue to use more non-traditional materials, it will ultimately impact collision repairers. When Ford manufactured the all-aluminum F-150 in 2015, there was much discussion around the use of this material. As a result, some collision repairers have already set up their facilities to ac-
This Audi structure at the SCRS booth during SEMA consists of stamped and extruded aluminum with carbon fiber reinforcements. Credit: Tim Ronak
commodate aluminum repair with a clean room and dedicated tools, dust evacuation systems, etc.
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In addition to aluminum and lightweight steel, I think we’ll also see a shift in the use of composite plastics. All these changes are likely to affect the repair versus replace decision-making process. Certain materials are simply going to create a different pattern of damage than steel.
A BMW i8 using carbon fiber. Credit: Tim Ronak
With some parts of the car comprised of ultra-high-strength steel, for example, a repair is prohibited because it will ruin the vehicle’s structural integrity. Other parts, such as composite plastics and even carbon fiber, can be repairable in certain instances but this is rarer than if the panel was comprised of mild steel. The properties of the metal in
the vehicle dictate how it will respond in an accident. Because aluminum becomes more brittle when impacted, it’s more likely that it will crack versus deform. When mild steel is impacted, it dents. It deforms the energy and continues to travel through the rest of the car because that energy hasn’t been dispersed quickly enough. When you have something that cracks, that energy disperses much more efficiently. If you have a fender with a dent, it might be repairable; however, it probably can’t be fixed if it has a crack. Take the 2018 Audi A3. There’s an A3 with a gas engine and an Audi e-tron, the plug-in electric vehicle. With the gas engine version, the fenders are made of mild steel. The fenders on the plug-in version are aluminum. The front ends look identical and there is no difference cosmetically. However, when those cars are in an accident and subjected to impact, the fenders are going to respond very differently. There will be different patterns of damage simply due to the materials. That’s at the
core of why this is important. The chief engineer of the Ford Explorer, Bill Gubing, said that weight was a factor in every decision they made on the 2020 Explorer, according to FordAuthority.com. The engineering team looked at every part and how they could achieve weight savings and still achieve the same type of performance or better in a crash test. Ford uses aluminum in the 2020 Explorer, but it also uses steel, magnesium and plastic.
A McLaren using carbon fiber. Credit: Tim Ronak
This is a great example of how automakers are looking at all the components in the vehicle to determine how it can be made lighter. For repairers, this means the opportunities for fixing the components in a collision repair setting are re-
duced. You don’t have as much decision-making capability due to the materials being used. Subsequently, your potential profit margins are reduced and cycle times will likely increase.
How do you recommend collision repairers educate themselves and prepare for these changes?
As we see the use of these mixed materials increase, understanding the materials and the makeup of vehicles is key. In addition to having the proper tooling and equipment, training is critical. Although it can often be challenging to do in a shop environment, over the last 18 months during the pandemic, many shops have had more time to educate technicians. It’s also important to include customer service representatives, estimators and managers. I-CAR is going through a revamping of its content, which will be very valuable for the industry. There are also a variety of webinars and classes available that can be
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helpful. A huge component of education involves referencing the OEM repair procedures, which are changing all the time. That’s why we are working hard at Mitchell to integrate those in the estimating platform so it’s not so cumbersome for shops to do that research. Shops also need to set appropriate expectations with customers. This starts with the estimating process. When writing the initial estimate, it’s important to educate owners of newer model vehicles about the types of materials used. Consumers are unaware of many of these changes and don’t understand the impact of the materials when they are in an accident. Having those types of conversations up-front is an opportunity for collision repair facilities to put themselves in a position where they are
the experts and demonstrate they are looking out for their customers’ best interests. We’ve also seen interest from insurance clients wanting to understand more about how vehicles are constructed and the decisions that need to be made.
What are some of the opportunities available for repairers?
In the future, I think there will be more specialization in the market. By training employees to repair vehicles with these types of materials, shops can create a healthy profit center. It’s not going to be for every shop but depending on the market and the customers you serve, there could be some opportunities, whether you are an independent repair facility or part of a consolidator.
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Honda Embraces Long-Term Remote Work Opportunities for U.S. Associates Honda will provide some of its U.S. associates more workplace flexibility by providing long-term opportunities to work remotely. Under this new approach, eligible associates will be able to work from home or in satellite locations for all or part of their workweek. The decision marks a significant pivot toward the future as Honda adapts its policies to match evolving workstyles. Remote work is a critical recruiting and retention tool for the talent Honda needs to achieve its vision of a carbon free and collision free future and expanding life’s potential for people everywhere. With the shift toward more flexibility, Honda’s talent pool expands dramatically, increasing its ability to maintain the quality Honda customers have come to expect while innovating and transforming its broad range of customer products and services. “This expansion of remote work opportunities reflects lessons learned over the past 18 months and
a recognition of the needs of Honda’s current and future workforce,” said Rich Richardson, vice president of human resources, American Honda Motor Co., Inc. “Our remote work policy creates more flexibility so that wherever works get done, Honda associates will continue to collaborate with each other and create value for our customers and society.” While Honda continues to monitor the pandemic situation, the policy change is planned for Oct. 1, but associates not already working remotely can begin transitioning to their new workstyles as soon as Aug. 30. In addition to traditional onsite roles, Honda is introducing new “virtual” and “hybrid” workstyles based on an associate’s role and responsibilities. Honda is also working to understand the unique needs and interests of associates who cannot work remotely and plans to introduce new offerings to enhance the on-site work experience as early as this fall. Source: Honda
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Pro Spot Denver Training Center Open House Aces the Test by Barbara Davies and
Autobody News attended Pro Spot International’s open house at the company’s brand new Pro Spot Aces of Denver Training Center, located at 5280 Steele Street in Denver, CO, on the evening of July 30. “It was a wonderful event, and I am proud of our team and the Colorado crew that made this possible,” said Ron Olsson, president of Pro Spot International.
Windshield Repair Kit, the NP-3 Nitrogen Plastic Welder, Dent Pulling Stations, the i4S and i5 spot welders, PR205MV and PR220MV Synergic MIG Welders, Dust-free Sanding Stations, the PR-5 Rivet System for aluminum riveting and the SP-1, SP-2 and SP-5DP Pulse MIG Welders. “The open house was a great time,” Fahey said. “Almost every piece of equipment that we carry is on display in the Pro Spot Aces of
will be used for training. “We have brand new offices and a 40-by-40-foot training center and classroom,” said Fahey. “The industry in this region badly needed
A good time was had by all: Pro Spot showed guests and employees a great time during the Aces of Denver open house. Pictured, left to right, is Bob Pluth, Ron Olsson, Johan Huwaert of Garmat USA, and Ryan Swanson.
Hands-on Training: Ryan Swanson gives Barbara Davies of Autobody News some hands-on welding instruction on Pro Spot’s Aluminum Pulse SP-5DP MIG Welder.
Pro Spot Team: The Pro Spot Team proudly hosted guests for the July 30 open house at the new Pro Spot training facility in Denver. Pictured, left to right, is Ryan Swanson, training development manager; Bob Pluth, technical services manager; Lorinda Teague, sales administrator; Keith Fahey, sales manager; Bud Larson, Pickens Technical College; Ron Olsson, president; and Dennis Rogers.
The open house began with a tour of the 6,400-square foot facility, comprised of a warehouse distribution center, office space, classrooms and a complete hands-on training center that will allow Pro Spot to better serve its distributors and customers in the surrounding markets.
Official Ribbon Cutting: Ron Olsson and Keith Fahey make it official by cutting the ribbon at the Pro Spot Aces of Denver Distribution and Training Center.
Olsson was joined by Keith Fahey, sales manager at Pro Spot Aces of Denver, as they conducted the official ribbon-cutting ceremony. As the open house proceeded, Pro Spot provided guests with live and hands-on demonstrations of more than a dozen products, including the Ion Spot anti-static gun,
Denver Distribution and Training Center, providing the opportunity for our customers to come experience and receive hands-on training on nearly every product Pro Spot manufactures.” Fahey approached Pro Spot about his future plans and interest in solidifying his company to be a part of Pro Spot. “My dad started Aces of Denver 40 years ago, and I have been in the collision industry my entire life, selling and servicing Pro Spot for 28 years. It’s been extremely rewarding being part of such a great company,” said Fahey. “I’m so pleased that my son, Luke, and long-time service technician, Steve Hoff, along with myself, can continue doing what we have been doing so long—selling and servicing the collision industry in Colorado and Wyoming with Pro Spot products.” Pro Spot acquired Aces of Denver in November 2020 and began renovating the facility, adding a training center and classrooms to the distribution site. Half of the building still functions as a warehouse service center, while the remaining half
a miniature version of the Carlsbad headquarters, and we look forward to helping all the shops in this area with their training and service needs.”
a local training center, so Pro Spot provided it, and we’ve received an overwhelming number of positive responses. The Pro Spot Aces of Denver Training Center is like
Pro Spot currently has training centers at its headquarters in Carlsbad, CA; Nashville, TN; Venice, FL; and now in Denver, CO, providing regional locations for its distributors and customers across the country. For more information, visit https:// prospot.com/
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3/29/21 3:19 P
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Please contact these dealers for your Honda or Acura Genuine parts needs. HONDA CONNECTICUT
Dept. Hours: M-F 7-5; Sat 7-4 email@example.com
Dept. Hours: M-F 7:30-5 firstname.lastname@example.org
Lia Honda of Enfield
LIA Honda Northampton
Dept. Hours: M-F 7:30-5:30; Sat 8-4 email@example.com MAINE
Dept. Hours: M-F 7:30-5; Sat 8-3 firstname.lastname@example.org NEW JERSEY
Berlin City Honda
Dept. Hours: M-F 7:30-5:30 email@example.com
Prime Honda Saco
Dept. Hours: M-F 7:30-6; Th. 7:30-7; Sat 7:30-4 firstname.lastname@example.org
Criswell Honda Germantown
Dept. Hours: M-Thu 7-7; Fri 7-6; Sat 7-5; Sun 8-4 email@example.com
Rossi Honda Vineland
Dept. Hours: M-F 7:30-5 (W until 7); Sat 7:30-3 firstname.lastname@example.org
Route 22 Honda Hillside
Dept. Hours: M-F 8-5; Sat 8-2 email@example.com
Dept. Hours: M-Sat 8-5 firstname.lastname@example.org
Honda of Turnersville
Dept. Hours: M-F 8-6; Sat 8-4 email@example.com
Hudson Honda West New York
Dept. Hours: M-Sat 8-5 firstname.lastname@example.org
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Ide Honda Rochester
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Dept. Hours: M-F 7:30-5:30 email@example.com
Lia Honda of Albany Albany
Dept. Hours: M, T, W, F 7:30-5:30; Thur 7:30-8; Sat 8-5 firstname.lastname@example.org
Lia Honda of Brewster Brewster
Dept. Hours: M-F 7:30-5; Sat 8-4 email@example.com
Lia Honda of Williamsville Williamsville/Buffalo
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Ray Laks Honda Orchard Park
Dept. Hours: M, Tu, Th 8-8; W, F 8-6; Sat 8-5 email@example.com
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Dept. Hours: M-Sat 7:30-6 email@example.com
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Dept. Hours: M-Sat 8-5 firstname.lastname@example.org
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Dept. Hours: M-F 8-7; Sat 8-4 email@example.com 34 SEPTEMBER 2021 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com
Dept. Hours: M-F 7:30-6; Sat 8-4 firstname.lastname@example.org
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Dept. Hours: M-F 7:30-8; Sat 8-4; Sun 9-4 firstname.lastname@example.org
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Dept. Hours: M-F 8-5; Sat 8-1 email@example.com
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Dept. Hours: M-F 8-5; Sat 8-1 email@example.com autobodynews.com / SEPTEMBER 2021 AUTOBODY NEWS 35
From the Desk of Mike Anderson with Mike Anderson
Mike Anderson is the president and owner of Collision Advice, a consulting company for the auto body/collision repair industry. For nearly 25 years, he was the owner of Wagonwork Collision Center, an OEM-certified, full-service auto body repair facility in Alexandria, VA.
Daily Release Meetings a Must for Successful Collision Repair Shops An Autobody News reader recently emailed me a question he had about daily release meetings at his shop. I always like hearing from shops because that’s often where I get ideas for this column. So let’s talk a little about release meetings: when they should be held, who should attend, what should be discussed. I want to start with the caveat that some people tell me they think release meetings are a waste of time. I disagree. I think they are critical for a shop’s success. And I suspect people who think that probably aren’t leading―or aren’t attending― good release meetings. When thinking about release meetings, I suggest thinking about a football game. At a football game, the play comes from the sidelines out to the quarterback on the field. The quarterback has 30 seconds to
get that play off. So the team huddles so the quarterback can tell everyone the play, and the huddle ends with everyone voicing an enthusiastic “Break!” That huddle is really what a release meeting is all about for a collision repair facility.
Mike Anderson said a daily release meeting gets the entire shop on the same page, just like a huddle for a football team
When I had my shops, we held a release meeting every single morning. My team was required to get to work by 7:30 a.m., and at 7:45 a.m.,
they had to be in uniform. That’s when the meeting began. Not at 7:50 a.m., not even at 7:47 a.m. It began at 7:45 a.m. Who was there? Everyone. The people who washed cars, the painters, the body techs, the parts manager, the estimators, the customer service reps. Everyone. Now, I will say I’m currently working with a shop that does $1 million a month in sales. For an organization of that size, it doesn’t make sense to have everyone come together for a single release meeting. But that company is divided into multiple teams, or “cells,” and each of those has its own release meeting with everyone on that team. In either case, the key purpose of the release meeting is to make sure everyone is on the same page about the vehicles scheduled to be delivered that day, or on either of the
next two days. So you’re looking out in advance three days. We’d discuss if there are any issues with any of those vehicles, in order to take a proactive rather than reactive approach. The parts guy might say, for example, “We have all the parts for these cars, but the taillight for Mrs. Smith’s Toyota won’t be here until 2 p.m. today.” We’d make sure the painters knew everything that needed to painted that day, and in what order we wanted them painted. We’d let them know what they would be painting tomorrow, so they’d know what to move on to if they got through today’s work early. We’d make sure the customer service reps had the information they needed in order to communicate with customers. We’d review any appointments coming in that day, and find out
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there if there was any equipment that needed repairs or service, or any facility maintenance work needed. We’d make sure any sublet work had been scheduled to be handled by vendors. We’d discuss any warranty or customer request items we needed to process. We’d talk about who was going to be out on vacation, and make sure their responsibilities were being covered. As the only time of day when everybody is together, it can be a good time to highlight if it was an employee’s birthday or work anniversary, and give them some highfives. In any case, try to end each meeting on a positive, enthusiastic note, just like the chant of “break” at the end of a huddle. Here’s another thing: I don’t think the release meeting should ever last more than 15 minutes. In my shop, we started at 7:45 a.m., and everyone knew we had to be done by 8 a.m. when we opened our doors for business. A couple of cautions: When I talk to people about their grievances about release meetings, two things
are the primary buzzkills. Those who show up on time don’t want to be left standing around, wasting their time, because whoever runs the meeting isn’t there. They also aren’t going to have much tolerance―nor should they―for a meeting leader who isn’t prepared. So in order to be prepared to lead your 7:45 a.m. release meeting tomorrow, you likely will need to have some other brief, smaller meetings throughout the day. I liked to have a meeting with some key employees right before or right after lunch to make sure we were still on track for the day. I also liked to meet with my paint team at the end of the day to see if everything got accomplished. If it didn’t, I could update their list for the next day before the release meeting. I’ve got a document I’d be happy to send you that includes a sample SOP for release meetings, and highlights the topics that should be covered. If you’d like a copy, just email my assistant Tiffany at tiffany @collisionadvice.com and put “release meeting document” in the subject line.
1,000-Plus Attend ASE Instructors Training Conference More than 1,000 instructors, presenters and industry guests from across the country participated in the ASE Instructors Training Conference held virtually July 26-30. The sold-out event featured training classes for high school and post-secondary instructors from automotive, truck and collision repair programs. “The ASE Instructors Training Conference is the largest training conference of its kind in the nation and this year’s event was a huge success,” said Mike Coley, president, ASE Education Foundation. “Because ASE continues to set the standard for offering innovative and informative resources for automotive educators, we had instructors from across the country participate in their choice of virtual sessions. “We want to thank our conference sponsors ASE, Advance Auto Parts, asTech Training, Daimler Truck, Goodheart-Willcox, Isuzu Commercial Truck and Snap-on, along with all our other industry partners, all of whom
gave exceptional presentations and provided valuable training that instructors could not receive anywhere else.” Conference participants were able to view sessions in three different tracks: auto, collision and truck, each track offering more than 20 hours of technical update training. Those who registered for the conference by July 30 and were unable to attend any live sessions can view the recordings through Aug. 31. All live and recorded sessions viewed will count toward the ASE Education Foundation training requirement and will be shown on individuals’ training certificates. To view the conference schedule, visit https://aseeducationfoundation.org/events/ase-instructor-training-conference To log in to view recorded training sessions and download handouts, visit https://www.eventsquid. com/event.cfm?id=13050 Source: ASE
autobodynews.com / SEPTEMBER 2021 AUTOBODY NEWS 37
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Check out MoparRepairConnection.com for resources, promotions and technical information. ©2021 FCA US LLC. All Rights Reserved. Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, Ram, Mopar and SRT are registered trademarks of FCA US LLC. FIAT is a registered trademark of FCA Group Marketing S.p.A., used under license by FCA US LLC.
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Hey Toby! with Toby Chess
Toby Chess is an I-CAR program instructor, Training specialist, and former salvage yard operator. Toby is universally known in the collision industry for his work with first responders and advocacy for body shops and consumers. He can be reached at email@example.com
Deciding When Used Parts are Appropriate in the Collision Repair Process Recently, I was training in a body be addressed when you install a used shop in the Los Angeles area and no- door: ticed a used door for a vehicle repair 1. De-trimming the used door for paint access (not included) in the technician’s stall. The tech complained he needed more time to fix the door than what was negotiated between the shop with David McClune and wrecking yard. When I finished testing, I pulled out my PDR lamp and highlighted all the damage (See Figs 1 & 2).
You will also need to check the glass for the correct tint. 6. If the door has an applique, you will need to remove the old one from the used door and order and install a new one, another not-included item.
California Autobody Association
Year in Quotes with John Yoswick Fig. 1
Figure 5 shows a used front suspension received by a body shop. You will notice red coating on some of the parts. The shop was charged $60 for Magnafluxing the part. Let’s take a look at Magnafluxing and die checking. A Magnaflux test is a non-destructive testing (NDT) process for detecting surface and subsurface cracks in materials such as iron (Figs 6&7). Magnetic particle inspection can be
used only on ferrous materials like iron and steel. The Magnaflux process does
2. Removing paint finish to comply with your paint manufacturer’s warranty. Most company’s paint with Richard Steffen warranty will only cover between 12 to 13 mils of paint thickness, a not-included item. Also, check the door for prior damage repair. Fig. 2 3. Prior damage to the door is I marked all the damage on now the responsibility of the body the door other than the large dent. I shop that sells the part to the cusasked the owner of the shop a cou- tomer. ple of questions about the door. The 4. Check for corrosion and apshop and owner negotiated a $50 re- plied seam sealers. duction in price to fix the large dent. 5. Check to see if vehicle glass is with John Yoswick I used that amount to represent the tempered or laminated. More vehicles are using laminated door glass shop’s hourly door rate. instead of tempered. (See Fig 4.) Here are the questions I asked: It should be noted laminated door 1. Who is paying for the primer, glass is thicker than tempered glass. blocking and sandpaper on the entire repaired door? 2. Since you are charging one hour to fix the door, who is paying the rest of the repair time? 3. Who is going to make up forHendricks the with Karyn lost billing time? 4. What about the cycle time delay fixing the used door?
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not work on aluminum, but penetrating dyes are available to test aluminum parts in a similar way. Magnetic Particle Inspection is performed in four steps: • Induce a magnetic field in the specimen. • Apply magnetic particles to the part’s surface. • View the surface, looking for particle groupings that are caused by defects. • Demagnetize and clean the part.
testing technique, also known as liquid penetrant inspection (LPI), is a method used to locate surface breaking flaws such as cracks, porosity, laps, seams and other surface imperfections. The procedures for using these products are as follows: • Spray the part to checked with the cleaner SKC-S and wipe dry with a clean rag. (See Fig 9)
crack(s). • Follow the cleaning process with developer SKD-S2. Any crack(s) will be red in color. See Fig 10 for aluminum panel that was damaged and then repaired and welded. Notice all the cracks.
Looking at the suspension parts, the wrecking yard sprayed penetrant on the aluminum parts, but did not apply developer. They charged for Magnafluxing, but they used dye penetrant. They should have disassembled the parts when they did dye penetrant. They also should have checked the knuckle for cracks. Moving on to a used sub frame.
Dye penetrant inspection (DPI) is widely used to detect surface cracks. This non-destructive, three-part
• Apply Penetrant SKL-SP2 to the area that needs to be checked. Wait about 10 minutes for the product to wick into the crack(s). (See Fig 9) • Clean entire panel with a clean rag and cleaner. Do not spray cleaner directly to the panel, which will wash away the penetrant in the
Dye penetrant can be used on steel as well as aluminum. Fig 11 shows dye penetrant being used on a steel brake rotor. Fig. 12
There are several things that need to done to this part prior to purchase. First and foremost, you will need to check for square. This can be done with a tram gauge that has adapters. (See Figs 13 & 14) Since a subframe controls camber and caster, the part needs to be
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straight and symmetrical. If you want a printout verification, you could use the Metrix Wand, Car-OLiner Point X or Chiefs Velocity. This would be a non-included item.
Next you will need to check for corrosion. If it checks out, you need to clean and refinish the part and again, this would be a non-included item. If the part has replaceable bushings, you may want to replace and again, the labor and parts to replace would not be included. Let’s look at everyone’s favor used part, the used quarter panel.
When a used quarter panel arrives at the shop, the first thing that needs to be checked is the paint thickness and any body filler from previous repairs. Most shops will drill out the spot welds to remove the outer quarter panel. This is Honda/Acura’s position state-
ment: “Preparation of the salvaged/recycled parts can negatively affect installation, which may have an adverse effect upon crash energy management and occupant safety in any subsequent collision. For example: If the factory spot welds are drilled out of a rear outer (quarter) panel leaving holes in the flanges, there may not be enough flange material remaining to attach the salvaged/recycled part with the BRM-specified spot welds. This would require substitution of MAG plug welding to attach the panel. Substitution of BRM-specified welding methods is never approved by American Honda. Additionally, in cases where outer panels attach to certain ultrahigh-strength steel (UHSS) structural parts, weld method substitution may weaken the UHSS parts.” What this statement means is a quarter panel should be removed from the inside out so the panel does not have a drilled out metal. (See Fig.
16) Some more line items you would need on your estimate include: removing any attached parts, removing any foam from the used panel, removing all sealant and undercoating from mating surface areas, removing broken glass from flanges, removing finish thickness, repairing any holes from the removal process necessary for removal, repairing all hems on the used panel (including holes that occurred when removing the panel) before installation and finally disposing of the donor remains. When you add up all the associated costs, it may be more cost effective to use a new OEM panel. Furthermore, many dealers will price match. A used quarter panel will be a better option if: • Need additional attached part(s) and not just the outer panel. • It is more cost effective • OEM is backordered or not available You should understand if a vehicle
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is still under warranty, that warranty is still enforced except for the used part. That warranty falls in your
lap, possibly the insurance company and/or the parts vendor. If an attached part fails due to the used part, that part would also be the responsibility of the repair shop. You will also need to inform your customer a used part was installed on their vehicle. I found this quote on the Audi website and it should also be considered when ordering that used part: “Additionally, Audi does not support the use of parts that have been
removed or salvaged from another vehicle that was previously involved in a collision. These parts are compromised by being exposed to weathering, rust, environmental damage and heat damage from welders used to remove the parts from vehicles that were previously involved in a collision. These elements can cause Audi’s high-strength steel, aluminum and carbon fiber vehicle unibody parts to lose their structural integrity, which can cause the vehicle to not perform properly if involved in a future collision.” I believe used parts are necessary in the collision repair process, but you need to do your due diligence when you make the decision to replace an OEM new part with that used part.
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GM Has Two New All-Electric Commercial Vehicles In Development by Anthony Alaniz, Motor1.com
BrightDrop, GM’s new commercial vehicle endeavor, is still on schedule to deliver its first model, the EV600, this fall. It’ll launch alongside the GMC Hummer EV pickup and before the all-electric Cadillac Lyriq crossover arrives in early 2022. However, General Motors has even bigger commercial plans as company CEO Mary Barra announced Aug. 4 it’s planning to introduce two new EVs designed to target commercial and small-business customers. Aug. 4, GM reported its second-quarter sales results, and Barra revealed the two new EVs during a conference call with analysts afterward, according to Automotive News. One will be a full-size all-electric cargo van that will wear the Chevy bowtie. The other, which Barra didn’t link to a specific GM brand, will be a medium-duty truck, though it won’t be just all-electric. The truck will pack GM’s Ultium battery technology and offer its Hydrotec hydrogen fuel-cell powertrain.
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Barra told analysts the two new commercial vehicles would “complement BrightDrop,” while growing its commercial fleet market share. According to Barra, GM will have an EV “for almost any hauling or towing job you can imagine.” GM has ambitious plans to offer a plethora of electric vehicles in North America and China—30 models by 2025. It’s not clear when the two commercial EVs will hit the market, but we don’t expect it’ll be too long of a wait. The two new commercial vehicles are just the latest in a string of soft reveals from GM. Earlier this year, Chevy confirmed there’ll be an all-electric version of its Silverado pickup that’ll be built alongside the Hummer EV. Both will use GM’s Ultium platform and battery tech, which will also underpin the new commercial models. Electric vehicles may not be mainstream yet, but one sector that could benefit from them is commercial businesses, which will be critical to GM’s overall electrification strategy.
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Generating More Profit in Your Auto Body Shop with Windshield Repair by Stacey Phillips
When Richard Campfield was looking into starting a retail windshield repair business 35 years ago, he conducted some direct marketing to determine if it was worth pursuing. When he approached consumers with a chip or stone break, the typical response was, “It has been there for years; give me your card.” However, a consumer with a long crack asked if it could be fixed immediately.
Campfield, founder of Ultra Bond, opened a mobile service in 1986 focused on windshield crack repair and fixing the long cracks and chips that weren’t being addressed. At the time, there was not much information or technology about how and when to repair cracks. He began by trial and error and field testing followed by lab testing, to find out what it took to meet the same federal safety standard (FMVSS 205) as a new windshield and confirm the safety and efficacy of the field tests. He kept explicit details on every invoice and eventually developed his own windshield repair criterion, tools, resins and methods. In 1990, he began manufacturing and selling the tools, resins and kits to repair long cracks and chips. During his career, he has been granted 14 windshield repair patents. Since then, new vehicles have been introduced with an increasing amount of technology and Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS), such as lane departure warning, collision avoidance alert and heated wipers and windshields. These systems may use lidar, radar, cameras, sensors and other devices. As a result, Campfield said replacing
automotive glass is not as straightforward as it once was and the cost has tripled. Campfield recently teamed up with one of his competitors, Korey Gobin, sales manager at Delta Kits, to share information on how collision repairers can conduct windshield repairs in the age of ADAS and generate more profit in their facilities. Their presentation was held during Auto Glass Week 2021 at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, FL. Over three days, a wide range of presenters discussed current trends and issues in regard to automotive glass repair and replacement. Step one, according to Gobin, is to know yourself. “Know who you are,” he said. “Know your value and what you bring to the table. A lot of people forget that.” With the addition of ADAS features in new vehicles, Gobin said there are opportunities now available with windshield repair and replacement, and highly recommended repairers consider generating more with what they already have. For those considering adding or increasing windshield repair in their auto body shops, Gobin said it is a simple and easy process that takes about 15 minutes. In addition, windshield repair has very low overhead and costs approximately $1 or less in supplies. “We all know that time is money and time is very valuable,” he said. “If you’re not doing windshield repair, you should ask yourself, ‘Why not?’” Three Ways to Generate More Profit Gobin offered three ways to generate more profit with windshield repair: word of mouth, creating a referral program and what he referred to as “old-school” methods. The best business card, according to Gobin, is word of mouth. “If you do a good job, someone is going to tell somebody,” he said. Therefore, he stressed the importance of being very vocal and letting existing customers know the business’s services. “We tend to think that everyone
46 SEPTEMBER 2021 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com
knows the services we offer, but a lot of people actually don’t,” said Gobin. “It’s your job to let existing customers know the services you offer, windshield repair in particular.” Many customers also don’t understand what is involved in a windshield repair and the value of doing it, so Gobin recommended taking the time to explain.
“Instead of assuming, actually state what windshield repair is and the actual value you bring them,” said Gobin. This includes letting customers know it is easy to do and won’t take much time, and they can save money having the windshield repaired rath-
er than replaced. Another way to generate more profit in an auto body shop with windshield repair is by creating a referral program. This involves offering customers a giveaway or reward for recommending the business to someone. “Your customers have a network they know and those are potential customers for you,” said Gobin. “It’s a numbers game; the more people you reach, the more potential customers you have, which could help generate more revenue for you.” He suggested being creative when coming up with an incentive to refer someone to the auto body shop. Examples include offering a discount on the next purchase, a free product, paying for a related product and/or a bonus upgrade. Some businesses are also finding success using “old-school” methods, such as cold calling and partnering with other companies. Gobin suggested reaching out to high-volume companies in high-traffic areas that
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deal with vehicles, such as car dealerships, lube shops and car washes. After explaining the value the business can offer to them and their customers, Gobin recommended aligning with them. “Be alert and aware of what’s out there and work with them,” said Gobin. “Having these types of businesses potentially offer or mention your business for windshield repair doesn’t take away from their existing business… and can help generate more revenue.” Campfield recalled securing this type of business relationship at a carwash in 2012. When he asked customers about chips in their windshields, he received the same response he did when first opening his business in 1986: “It has been there for years.” He began telling potential customers they have already paid for the repair in their insurance policy instead of saying it was free. “The word ‘free’ often brings up skepticism, so that got their attention,” said Campfield. “I found a way to say it more effectively and they seem to be more susceptive to getting a repair.” About half of Campfield’s local retail auto glass repair income for decades has come from windshield cracks. “Even though it is about onethird of our business, it is half the income because the amount charged for a crack is higher than that of a chip,” he said. Through his extensive experience repairing and replacing windshields over the years, Campfield has found the efficacy of fixing cracks is
there. “Structurally, it’s the most superior repair you can do,” he said. The resin for chips is limited to thin, low viscosity resin, whereas the resin used in cracks with the proper tools can be 10 to 100 times thicker. “When a consumer comes in with a chip, they say, ‘I don’t want it to crack.’ When they have a crack, they say, “I don’t want to replace it,’” he said. In either case, Campfield said always be up front with customers. “Your customers deserve respect, to be told the truth and to be given their options on whether the windshield is repairable or not,” he said. In 2007, Campfield helped create the American National Standard Institute (ANSI)―Repair of Laminated Automotive Glass Standard (ROLAGS). This standard has been updated in 2014 and is currently being updated again. It can be used to evaluate damages on laminated auto glass, aid in the decision to repair or replace the glass and codify the current best practices of laminated auto glass repair. Campfield said the importance of having a National (ANSI) Standard is two-fold. “First and foremost, it is to prevent consumers from being misled into unnecessary replacements,” he said. Campfield gave the example of being told a crack cannot be repaired if it is longer than a dollar bill or 6 inches. “This is not true,” he said. “The ROLAGS is 14 inches, not 6 inches.”
shields surveyed, there were 767 cracks and 2,202 stone breaks/chips. Campfield said windshields are the most frequent auto insurance claim in the U.S. and the recalibration of ADAS has increased both the number of claims and claim costs. “Insurers favor repairs over replacements and so do consumers,” he said. For auto body shops looking to make more money, Campfield highly recommends adding windshield repair to their businesses. Gobin agreed. “It’s best to educate your customer on what windshield repair is and the benefits of it,” he said. “Windshield repair restores the structural integrity of the windshield, retains the original factory seal [which avoids leaks], enhances the cosmetic appearance of the windshield and protects the environment by keeping laminated glass out of the landfills.” For more information, email Rich Campfield at rich@ultrabond. com or visit www.ultrabond.com, or email Korey Gobin at kgobin@ deltakits.com or visit www.deltakits. com.
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ASE Presents Chairman’s Scholarship The National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) has awarded the ASE Chairman’s Scholarship for the 2021-22 academic year to Brock Voegele of Bismarck, ND. The ASE Chairman’s Scholarship recognizes the strong technical skills and foundational knowledge required to support the collision repair industry as an entry-level technician. The ASE chairman is a voluntary leadership position, and the scholarship recognizes and honors the dedication of the ASE chairman to the ad-
Second, he said it requires windshield repair manufacturers and sellers to lab test their products to ensure repairs meet visual, durability and mechanical strength restoration. This helps makes sure businesses buying windshield repair kits, tools and resins would know they were safe to use on their customers’ windshields. Some cameras have built-in windshields that must be calibrated after a replacement so they operate properly. Currently, Campfield said there is no evidence any type of repair under the ROLAGS has caused problems with ADAS. “However, to be on the safe side, the Auto Glass Safety Council is developing the ROLAGS II to address if any of the break types at certain distances from the camera[s] will cause any alteration to any ADAS functions,” he said. Campfield shared the results of surveys he has conducted over the years that demonstrate the size of this untouched market. Parking lot surveys of windshield damage from 12 states showed out of 5,523 vehicle wind-
vancement of all service professionals. The ASE Board of Directors is proud to support recipients of this scholarship as they begin their journey as an automotive service and repair technician. Source: ASE
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How Could Gaming Change the Future of Collision Repair Training? by Chasidy Rae Sisk
“Do we need to look differently at how we approach training and education?” asked Jeff Peevy, I-CAR’s vice president of technical products, programs and services, during the July 22 CIECAST webinar. “The momentum of change today is so much greater than it ever has been. The way we’ve always thought and approached building training content, the collection of information and how we can simulate that into training and information has to be rethought, reinvented because of the speed at which it’s coming at us.” Before launching into “Technology’s Impact on the Future of Training: Welcome to the Gamer Culture,” Peevy briefly described I-CAR’s role within the collision repair inter-industry, as well as its vision that “every person in the collision repair industry has the information, knowledge and skills required to perform complete, safe and quality repairs for the ultimate benefit of the consumer.”
Giving a shoutout to I-CAR’s collaboration and coaching one aninstructional design team, Peevy other, rather than the Boomer genemphasized I-CAR’s interest in col- eration, which was accustomed to laborating with the industry: “Col- adult coaches telling us what to do.” laboration is in our DNA.” Gamers are more comfortable Addressing technology’s im- making quick decisions and taking pact on people as individrisks; things are always uals, Peevy explored the easy in the gaming world, impact of electronic-based but they’re ultimately degames on youth during their signed for success. They formative years. Based on enjoy being heroes, but it’s a study conducted by Cogimportant to realize games teach them to avoid bosses, nitive Science Magazine, so Peevy encouraged shop people retain 10% of what Jeff Peevy owners and managers to they read, 30% of what they “be more of a strategy guide than a hear and 70% of what they do. “As trainers in this industry, if traditional boss.” we don’t recognize this, we’re going Additional ways gamers’ mindsets vary from older generations to miss the boat,” Peevy said. He pointed out the difference include being more flexible, being gaming creates in the younger gen- able to better move between tasks erations’ mindsets: “When things and being better at stepping outside go bad in a game, you hit the reset their own perspective to see situbutton; you can always start over. In ations from someone else’s viewthe real world, Boomers are devas- point. tated by a layoff, but the gamer gen- The gamer generation also exerations bounce back quicker―they pects life to be fun. simply reset and move on. They’re “Attention is the scarcest realso used to relying on peer support, source in the world,” Peevy quoted
from “The Attention Economy,” by Thomas Davenport and John Beck. “Everything must be more engaging and entertaining in order to keep gamers’ attention.” Using data gathered by the Collision Repair Education Foundation (CREF), which shows the average technician age is 41, Peevy noted traditional gamers range in age from under 21 up to 51. The introduction of games on smartphones enhanced exposure to older and younger people as well. “Almost everyone, at some level, are playing games, and it may not have a direct influence on how we approach training, but it certainly should be something that we consider.” According to Peevy, technology impacts training approaches by making new demands to meet users’ training and learning needs. “Training needs to involve decisions, be entertaining and be fun. It must be relevant, engaging and challenging, though doable. It would be beneficial to build training that involves teams. It needs to allow stu-
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dents to practice new knowledge and skills and also allow students to compare their performance to others.” Peevy believes there are practical uses of extended reality, which refers to all real-and-virtual combined environments and human-machine interactions generated by computer technology and wearables, including augmented and virtual reality. Through the use of headsets that create their own environment, virtual reality provides training in complete immersion. “There are no distractions,” Peevy stated. “You’re in a world that’s been created ideal for learning. You can focus on whatever it is. As we continue to learn about the practical application of this, there are ways this will become very beneficial in the future.” In augmented reality, the headset overlays digital objects in the real world. “It allows you to see the real world and see things over it that you actually can do and get a more realistic experience, so you can gain knowledge, as well as improve your skills and understanding of the topic
without being in a dangerous environment,” Peevy said. Gamification is the application of gaming mechanics to non-gaming environments and is used to increase knowledge and skills for specific industry tasks. “The objective needs to be to gain new knowledge,” said Peevy. “You have the opportunity to apply this knowledge in a game and then practice your skills. You practice for accuracy and speed, and then when you apply that in the real world, you can be much more prepared, when done correctly.” Peevy mentioned the value of video-based and online training as a means of engaging collision repair professionals. He suggested online training allows for an environment that’s “more engaging and more relaxed. It’s less formal, and it’s more relatable and relevant. The interactive branching approach assesses how much you know over a series of questions and then ultimately can move you from a mainstream course design into a more basic or challenging position; it can adjust itself. Wherever you start is not important.
Our goal is to bring everybody up to the same level, at your pace.” Looking at technology’s impact on training content in the collision repair industry, Peevy stressed, given the speed of technological advances, I-CAR feels “the responsibility to work with the industry and collaborate with the industry to gain knowledge as quickly as we can. When a new technology shows up on the horizon, it’s our responsibility to explore and understand it. It may never go mainstream, but if it does, we’ll do our best to prepare the industry. We won’t wait for that technology to come to us.” I-CAR is focused on providing relevant training for the many ongoing changes impacting the collision repair industry today and in the future. Peevy looked at some of the programs related to ADAS, EVs and
I-CAR’s goals of figuring out “how we can do this differently, and we’ll continue to do that. We’d love to collaborate with anyone in the industry with interest or knowledge to share. We have this massive challenge that we all have to face with speed and momentum of change.” Peevy encouraged collision repair industry professionals interested in collaborating on these exciting initiatives to contact him at Jeff. Peevy@i-car.com. A replay of the July CIECAST is available at https://www.youtube. com/watch?v=yAkM0nbzrAk The next CIECAST, scheduled for Aug. 19 at 2 p.m. EST, will feature Marc Friedman, chief strategy officer, and Shivani Govil, chief product officer, of CCC Intelligent Solutions, as they discuss “Activating AI and Network Connections.”
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autobodynews.com / SEPTEMBER 2021 AUTOBODY NEWS 53
Industry Insight with John Yoswick
—John Yoswick is a freelance writer based in Portland, Oregon who has been writing about the automotive industry since 1988. He is the editor of the weekly CRASH Network (for a free 4-week trial subscription, visit www.CrashNetwork.com). Contact him by email at jyoswick@SpiritOne.com.
Why Collision Repair Shops, Insurers Often Disagree on Repair Plans
The Collision Industry Conference Another panelist, consultant and (CIC) Industry Relations Commit- former insurance executive Roger tee held a panel discussion this sum- Wright of Vector Squared, concurred with Ed Attanasio mer centered around a fundamental claims personnel often lag in their question: Why is there so often a technical knowledge as vehicle techdisconnect between auto body shops nology evolves. and insurance companies during the “In the 1970s, I started out [in repair planning stage, particularly the insurance industry] and I went to when it comes to procedures related Vale Tech and became a ‘three-week to advanced driver sys- wonder,’ and realized shortly therewithassistance Ed Attanasio tems (ADAS)? after I knew nothing,” Wright said. Michael Giarrizzo, CEO of “The collision repair shops trained DCR Systems, which operates eight me for the next 20 years. I went in as collision repair shops under partner- an insurance representative or indeships with dealers in four Eastern pendent appraiser and would listen states, sees training as the key issue to what they had to say and learn. I leading to the frequent lack of align- guess we’ve lost that, maybe.” with Ed Attanasio ment on repair plans between shops and insurers. Giarrizzo said OEM-certified shops like his continue to get significant amounts of training as vehicle complexity continues to Attanasio increase, with Ed but insurance claims personnel often aren’t getting that ongoing technical training. He equated it to a medical insurer questioning a surgeon. Oregon shop owner Ron Reichen said one “Someone handling a medical size-fits-all solutions don’t work because the claim may not have that same level time to scan and analyze trouble codes on two of education [as with the doctor], but they Stacey Phillips different brands of vehicles can vary widely have trust in that education,” Giarrizzo said. “Whether you’re up to That said, Wright said he can speed with it all or not, there’s got to understand insurance company rebe a trust level in whoever has gone sistance to what could be seen as out and invested in the education.” blanket position statements or pro Ron Reichen of Precision Body cedures from automakers. Wright with Stacey Phillips & Paint in Oregon agreed keeping said it was 2016 when he first saw up with vehicle technology is “a an automaker statement calling for challenge for us, and we’re con- all of its vehicles to be scanned after stantly training.” He said collision a collision. repairers “trying to get alignment “It didn’t designate a year or [with insurers], often find ourselves anything, just that all vehicles are with Stacey Phillips being the educators for the bill-pay- to be scanned,” Wright said. “If we er.” The shift to virtual claims settle- asked everybody in the audience ment doesn’t help, he said, because then, how many of those cars that it adds to the challenge of showing you repaired last week did you scan, or explaining what a vehicle re- it may have been maybe three or quires. four or five or one. Was it necessary He said he also sees a “one size to recall all those other cars because with Stacey Phillips fits all” approach that isn’t helpful. we didn’t do it right or safe? The time needed to scan a vehicle “No, the shop believed they and analyze the information and fixed the car properly, to OEM stanincorporate that into a repair plan dards, and all of a sudden we have might take 45 minutes on one make a bulletin that says we have to scan of vehicle and two hours on another, everything. That causes an insurer even on similar hits, Reichen said. some consternation. How can that
Social Media for Shops
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be? What happened between yesterday and today?” A seemingly sudden shift by an OEM can have real financial consequences, Wright said. “For even a medium-sized insurer that has 10,000 claims a day, if you throw a number out for pre- and post-scans, you come out with about $2.7 million a day in average increased costs. Per day,” Wright said. “They didn’t price that in. Now, don’t cry for the insurers. They’ll get this all priced in with the next rate increase. But in the meantime, which can be months or years, they’re losing $2.7 million a day. That’s real money to them. “So they push back a little bit, and say, ‘Do we need it on every car? Maybe the Saturn that’s in the parking lot that got hit by a shopping cart doesn’t need to be scanned.’ It’s not that we don’t want to fix a car
Media and Publicity for Shops
right. But it creates a concern for us.” But Reichen argued neither shops nor insurers should be deciding how to repair a vehicle. “No one knows the vehicle better than the person who built the vehicle, so from a repairer’s position, if the manufacturer says we need to do it…I’m going to follow those repair procedures,” Reichen said. He noted an empty chair is now always placed on the stage at CIC to remind attendees of an important industry constituent not generally represented at the meetings: the consumer. That began after a Texas couple won a $42 million judgment against a dealership auto body shop after a jury found the shop’s failure to follow OEM repair procedures contributed to the couple’s severe injuries in that vehicle in a subseSee Often Disagree, Page 61
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autobodynews.com / SEPTEMBER 2021 AUTOBODY NEWS 55
Where Film and Auto Body Shops Collide by Ed Attanasio
of hiking the Appalachian Trail. In another one, the shop fails an EPA inspection and is threatened with a potential shutdown.
A few years back, a British company produced a comedy series about life in an auto body shop that dealt with all of the crazy and wacky things that can happen in this industry. The characters they created were classic. First, there was the boisterous semi-retired owner who was well-known for randomly dropping in to yell and throw things. Then, there was the manager who spends all of his time hiding from the owner while taking it out on the shop’s employees. The techs are an interesting group, all in their 40s and all working on flat rate, so it’s a dog-eat-dog environment. The painters are all spraying solvent and constantly lobbying for waterborne, and everyone there calls the front office “Drama In 2007, a production company created a sitcom, “American Body Shop,” but after one Central.” short season of nine episodes, it was not Imagine “Taxi” meets “Cheers” renewed. Credit: IMDb with a lot of soap opera thrown in. Any of this sound familiar? Eventually, poor ratings shut It might just work, but getting this series down, even though it any TV series greenlit in today’s had some excellent acting, notably Hollywood can be difficult, though from Nick Offerman, who went on Spec Ad chanOrder to fame starring in “Parks & Recremany of the newer streaming nels―Netflix, Amazon, Hulu, Pea- ation.” The creator, Sam Greene, cock, etc.―are constantly searching broke all the rules by filming the piSales for Rep:fresh lot Norman Morano for new ideas and hungry and then sending it around to the content. Maybe a sitcom about the networks, which rarely works. But Advertiser: collision repair industry could be in this case, it did―at least for one done in an animated like season. Kenseries, Vangorder “Family Guy” or “TheVolkswagen Simpsons”?of Kingston Body shops have appeared in a In 2007, a production 1249 company Ulster Ave lot of movies. In most cases, nefaricreated a series, “American ous and highly illegal things happen KingstonBody NY 12401 Shop,” for a one-season run of845-336-5300x4 nine there. There were body shops in “The Phone: Fax: 845-336-7436 episodes. The storyline featured Wolf of Wall Street,” “Mad Max” Desert Body & Custom, anDate: auto2/15/2021 (“You bend it, we mend it.”), “CorToday’s body shop in Phoenix, AZ, described vette Summer” and “Christine”―I on IMDb as “the professional almostw/forgot Biglisting Pussy had a shop Ad type: home quarter page VW DLP for a bunch of twisted (and bent and in “The Sopranos.” sometimes, smashed) characters, InDesigner: the Canadian series, “The Instructions to Graphic including Sam, the owner; Rob, a Trailer Park Boys,” the main chartechnician whose solutions usu-information acters start body shop, 1)Use are all the in hisa 8th page specSuccess ad. ally much more complicated than Auto Body & Repair, in an episode any problem; Johnny, a displaced “Countdown to Liquor Day.” 2)Use the Liberty titled VW Qtr page ad template (and very kinky) Brooklynite; Tim, After being released from prison, who has a penchant for inapproprithe boys startParts a body shop, 3)Include the network logos: Trader, OEfiguring ate pranks; Luis, a Peruvian immithey learned collision repair while in Connection, OPS Trax and Collision Link grant who feigns a lack of English to prison. But, as we all know, it’s not mask a mysterious personality; and bullet that easy andinthe 4)Use the same points theTrailer LibertyPark VW Boys Denise, the harried receptionist who failed terribly. ad. Please don’t use the bullet point in the can barely tolerate her coworkers.” Film producer Jose Herrera existing 8th page spec ad. In one of the first episodes, the of Mio Productions in Silicon Valshop’s owner, Sam, decides to sell ley has an impressive resume in film Thanks, the business and pursue his dream that includes producing award-win56 SEPTEMBER 2021 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com Norm
ning films. He believes a body shop would be an outstanding setting for either a reality show or a sitcom, and that’s why he is working on a screenplay and a treatment for a dramatic series. “The environment in a busy body shop, with a whole slew of characters who all have their own agendas, is perfect for TV,” Herrera said. “The David vs. Goliath relationship between the insurance companies and the collision repair industry is ideal for the screen because every protagonist needs at least one villain. Then, of course, you have the customers, each with their own backstory as well.” Herrera knows he wants to depict a body shop as accurately as he can, so he started hanging out in shops until the pandemic hit. “I want to pick up the vibe and meet these people. Every shop needs that one old technician who is fighting new technology and another younger one who is excited about doing things a little more out-of-the-box,” Herrera said. “New technology has changed
the industry on many levels and a lot of shops are struggling to catch up, so that is another angle we want to include in both of our concepts.” Has Herrera thought of any particular actors or actresses to be cast in his proposed series? “We won’t have a huge budget, so we will probably be going with some new, unproven people,” he said. “In a perfect world, I’d love to have someone like Matt Damon or Matthew McConaughey as the shop owner, Bill Hader or Jim Carrey as technicians, Steve Buscemi as the painter and Melissa McCarthy running the front office. That would be awesome!”
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Stacey Phillips is an award-winning freelance writer and editor for the automotive industry. She has 20 years of experience writing for a variety of publications, and is co-author of “The Secrets of America’s Greatest Body Shops.” She can be reached at email@example.com.
with Stacey Phillips
California MSO Launches Kustomine Software to Help Collision Repairers Work More Efficiently
Body Shops Giving Back
In 1956, Bruno Sanchez opened a David, worked in my grandfather’s 2,500-square foot auto body shop shop growing up. He began running in San Francisco, CA.Stacey He named it it in 1968 and eventually purchased with Phillips Bruno and Son Auto Body Shop and the business in 1980. After opening the goal was to offer honesty, pas- a second location in Pleasanton in sion and craftsmanship. 1991, he changed the name to B&S Over the years, the family busi- Hacienda Auto Body to reflect a ness grew and was eventually re- partnership the company had with a named B&S Hacienda Auto Body. nearby collision repair facility. with Stacey Phillips We recently celebrated our 30th Currently owned and operated by David and Maria Dolores and their anniversary of that location. The three sons, David Jr., Tony and original San Francisco shop was Rob, the company has expanded to eventually sold in 1994. include six locations in the Tri-Val- My brother Tony, the general manager, started working with my ley Area of California. father in 1992. Rob, vice president of with Stacey Phillips dealer relations, joined in 1993. After earning a business degree at Chico State, I came onboard in 1999. Since my grandfather established the first location 65 years ago, we have opened six shops in the Tri-Valley area of California: Dubwith Victoria Antonelli lin, Livermore Southfront Road, Livermore First Street, Pleasanton Old Santa Rita, Pleasanton California Avenue and San Ramon. My parents are semi-retired but In 1956, Bruno Sanchez opened Bruno and still come by the shops. They spend Son Auto Body Shop most of their time doing philanwithofEdB&S Attanasio David Jr., CFO Haci- thropy work, which they absolutely enda, said the Sanchez family has love. always been committed to providing excellent customer service and qual- Q: What prompted the company to ity repair work. develop Kustomine software for the The team recently developed collision repair industry? software, called Kustomine, dewith Gary signed to empower body shopsLedoux with Jeff: I grew up in the same neigha paperless customer experience borhood as David, Tony and Robthat reduces environmental impact, bie and we had been trying to work saves time and money, and provides together for years. Finally, in 2019, cleaner data for the tools used to run B&S engaged my company to build the body shop. a better way to connect with cus Autobody News reached out to tomers from the time they initially David Sanchezwith Jr. andStacey Jeff Hill,Phillips an drop off their car through to the deinformation technology (IT) consul- livery process—from quote to cash. tant who helped develop the prod- Ultimately, we figured out how to uct, to find out more about Kustom- improve this process using modern ine and what led the team to create web development architecture and the solution for the collision repair communication methods such as industry. texting and email.
Tips for Busy Body Shops My SEMA
an estimate, they are handed a tablet, iPad or Surface computer to input basic personal information. Then, the CSR or estimator takes pictures of the damage and sends the information to the application, which we call Kustomine. Customers immediately receive a welcome message via email or text, as well as information regarding their insurance policy and rights. The estimate is also created automatically. The solution allows us to take estimate data virtually in real-time and push it to the custom CRM application. The software provides a 360-degree view of the repair so a customer can stay updated about everything concerning their vehicle. It also allows us to remarket to our customer base effectively. Q: How is it currently being used and what has the reaction been from
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Q: Can you share some history about B&S Hacienda Auto Body?
Q: Can you provide an overview of the software?
David: My dad, who is also named
Jeff: When customers come in for
58 SEPTEMBER 2021 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com
David: We rolled out the product to our flagship location in Pleasanton in December of 2019. Once we realized how successful it was, we began using it in the rest of our locations. We’ve found that it has led to a drastic increase in customer engagement. During COVID-19, we tried landing every person who came through the door. The product helped us do that with the welcome email/text and providing information about their rights. Jeff: In regard to employees, most of those on the front lines, including the CSRs and estimators, are at least a generation younger than us. Their comfort level with this type of technology is very high and they welcomed it with open arms.
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Q: Who is your target market? David: Kustomine was designed for shops looking for change and/or better processes. This includes single, independent shops as well as giant MSOs. We feel that the product has great potential for the industry. We’re gearing up to launch our public beta of the cloud-based product on Sept. 1.
improvement. For example, we’ve been able to shorten the amount of time that needs to be spent on an estimate by figuring out how long it will be between first notice of loss (FNOL) and when an estimate is turned into a work order. We can track all of those metrics and figure out which ones take the longest.
David: One of the biggest benefits is the elimination of unnecessary waste. I think that our industry does enough wasting and we wanted to address that. With Kustomine, we created a paperless, seamless process that essentially eliminated the use of paper. This is especially relevant since the pandemic. Also, shops receive 100% clean data because David and Maria Dolores and their three sons, Tony, David and Rob customers are entering it themselves. We often re We’re hoping to have a short ceive the wrong email address due beta cycle and launch version one of to a keystroke error from the estimaKustomine by the end of the year so tor or a language barrier between the we’re ready for anyone who wants customer and CSR. Through the use to sign up and buy a beta license. As of this tool, we know we’ll have aca small company, we look forward curate information. to people’s input and find out how In our industry, a shop typically to make this worthwhile for every- writes an estimate and if the custombody. er leaves, you’re more than likely not going to get the job. By touching Q: What are some of the benefits for a customer immediately and sending auto body shops using Kustomine? them useful information, we have found the capture rate is greater beJeff: Kustomine securely stores all cause of the instant communication. of the documentation pertaining Nine times out of 10, it’s a custo the repair and generates reports tomer’s first accident in seven years. that are useful for growing the busi- Things change over time and people ness. For example, you can reach need to know their rights, including all of your customers who own a that they can go to the shop of their certain car brand and do individual choice. We ensure they receive that outreach. All of the information is information immediately. stored on an encrypted database and We are an OEM-centric company that takes pride in being part travels across a secure SSL channel. Based on this information, we of more than 10 OEM certification can create targeted communica- programs. Once we communicate tion to reach potential and current that to potential customers, I believe customers and focus on process it helps them decide to have their car
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60 SEPTEMBER 2021 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com
repaired in one of our shops. Q: What is the importance of being OEM certified? David: Without a doubt, it’s the best way to fix a vehicle. With cars being more advanced and complex to repair, it’s essential to do your precrash analysis and calibration and understand what you are fixing. In our opinion, the OEM data is priceless. We do a lot of research and documentation to make sure we are repairing vehicles properly and putting them back to the OEM’s specifications. Although it can be a significant expense, we are willing to pay for it. There are too many things that could go wrong in the vehicle you are working on. Our job is to make our customers safe with every repair. This is going to become even more important in the future. Q: What type of philanthropy and community service does your family take part in? David: My parents are very passionate about community service and in-
stilled it in us. They have been key members of the Pleasanton Lion’s Club for at least 30 years. Although it is a small group, they do a tremendous amount of work in this area. My mom also supports the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, a global organization that funds Type 1 diabetes research. One of the organizations near and dear to my heart is Sunflower Hill, which is dedicated to creating places where adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities, including autism, live and work. I have an employee and a friend who both have children with autism and I’m thankful that my wife and I can support that organization. We are also involved with the College is Real program, where we donate and assist underprivileged children apply to, attend and graduate from college. Some are the first kids in their families to earn their college education. Our family believes in philanthropy and loves to give back to the community where we grew up. We’ve been blessed with good fortune and want to give back.
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Continued from Page 54
Often Disagree quent accident. “As repairers, that looms over us every day,” Reichen said, saying that’s why a shop can’t decide a called-for procedure doesn’t have to be done. “Common sense might say it doesn’t. But we also have to come back and weigh that liability exposure if we don’t do it.” Giarrizzo was among those during the discussion to suggest insurers should voice their concerns about OEM repair procedures to the automakers, not shops. “I could agree that some of the manufacturers’ guidelines or procedures seem like they are there to cover [the OEM’s] liability, but that’s a discussion between the manufacturer who builds the car and the folks that insure the car,” Giarrizzo said. “As a repairer, you have no choice but to follow those guidelines, period. If those guidelines need to be changed or have some flexibility, that’s a discussion for a room in Detroit or wherever
that car is built.” Wright didn’t disagree. “We [as insurers] need to trust the shop because they’re the expert. They’re the one repairing the car. They’re the one guaranteeing the repair,” Wright said. “I think the insurers need to work with the OEMs a little more in understanding the engineering behind [the procedures]. Is there really engineering that says we have to replace the rack and pinion on every single car in an accident, even when they don’t define ‘accident’?” Wright noted insurers worked with GM when the Corvette C6 came out. “We wanted bolt-on panels. We wanted sectional front and rear rails,” he said. “They wanted a low insurance rate [for the vehicle] so they put those things on that car. We worked together. “We need to work on getting the insurers and the OEMs in a room together to talk about the engineering rational for doing some of the things they [call for] so we can protect the collision repair shop. They have to fix the car right.”
Repairify Awarded Patent for Remote Automotive Diagnostics Technology Repairify, Inc. d/b/a asTech, a portfolio company of Kinderhook Industries, LLC, announced July 22 the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has awarded Repairify patent serial no. 16/202,642 for remote automotive diagnostics. The patent is directed to aspects of Repairify’s industry-disrupting technology, including systems and methods that allow ASE technicians to use a mobile device to read a vehicle’s identification number (VIN), transmit the VIN to a diagnostic database and assist in determining whether an original equipment manufacturer (OEM) diagnostic tool—or aftermarket tool—is required for proper diagnosis and/ or repair of the vehicle. As a result, automotive technicians can accurately select the correct OEM and/ or aftermarket remote diagnostic tools for the effective and safe diagnosis of vehicles. “asTech’s technology is an industry game changer by providing unique functionality to access vital OEM and aftermarket remote diagnostics data via VINs, and this
newest patent will help us in protecting that technology,” said Cris Hollingsworth, president of Repairify, Inc. “ASE technicians will be empowered to quickly access the correct automotive tools to accurately and safely address unique vehicle functionalities via diagnostics and repair data. This newest patent to be issued will be another competitive strategic step for accelerating our solutions and offerings across the entire automotive ecosystem.” The patent is expected to be directed at aspects of Repairify’s technology that serve as the brains of a revolutionary solution asTech is launching to the automotive aftermarket industry later this summer. The product will accurately address vehicles’ OEM and aftermarket remote diagnostic needs for three important automotive repair sectors: collision, mechanical and glass. These innovations further assist Repairify to expand and accelerate its proprietary tools, technology and service offerings across the Americas and Europe. Source: Repairify
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GM Class Action Lawsuit Alleges Airbag Failures Kill People by David A. Wood, CarComplaints.com
A GM class action lawsuit alleges the sensing and diagnostic modules prevent the airbags and seat belt pretensioners from deploying in certain frontal crashes. According to the class action lawsuit, at least 1,298 people were killed or injured in frontal collisions in which the airbags failed to deploy in GM vehicles. The lawsuit alleges that statistic is based on information from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration from 1999 to the present. According to the class action: “The ‘Class Vehicles’ herein include all vehicles in the United States that contain the SDM [sensing and diagnostic module] Calibration Defect that were (1) manufactured, sold, distributed, or leased by Defendants or (2) manufactured, sold, distributed, or leased by Old GM and purchased or leased by Plaintiff or a Class member after July 10, 2009.” The General Motors class action lawsuit was filed by plaintiffs
Jamar Chism (2012 Chevrolet Traverse), Ashley DeGruy (2014 Chevrolet Equinox), Kissy Elliott (2014 Chevrolet Traverse), William Garrison (2014 Chevy Silverado), Matthew Mastracci (2014 Chevy Silverado), Arthur Ray (2010 GMC Sierra 2500), Mark Silver (2014 Chevrolet 1500 Express) and Kenith Yates (2014 Chevrolet Silverado LD.) None of the plaintiffs allege their GM vehicles experienced any airbag or seat belt failures. But those plaintiffs allege millions of vehicles are dangerous to drive because the airbags and seat belt pretensioners can fail right when they are needed the most. The plaintiffs claim the airbag control units are defective, components GM refers to as sensing and diagnostic modules. The GM sensing and diagnostic module commands the airbags to deploy and the seat belts to tighten when the control unit senses a crash. The GM vehicles are allegedly equipped with airbag control unit software calibrated to prevent the airbags and seat belt preten-
sioners from deploying 45 milliseconds after a crash has begun. The lawsuit says this is a serious problem where a crash involves multiple impacts and the airbags fail to properly deploy. The lawsuit alleges occupants will never be protected in certain GM frontal crashes that involve multiple impacts. The class action provides an example where a vehicle first hits a curb and then veers and hits a tree, or a vehicle first hits a speed bump and then crashes into the vehicle in front of it. These are “concatenated” crashes which involve multiple inputs for the sensing and diagnostic modules to detect during a crash sequence. “In concatenated crashes, the first part of the incident (hitting a curb) sends the SDM into its ‘wake up’ or ‘stand by’ mode. The initial curb hit does not trigger the airbag or tighten the seatbelt, but the SDM ‘wakes up’ to confirm whether further irregular signals will follow and indicate a need for the seatbelts or airbags,” the GM class action lawsuit alleges.
The GM airbags and seat belt pretensioners can allegedly only be triggered “within 45 milliseconds of a first, irregular signal. If a second signal occurs after 45 milliseconds, the SDM purposefully, by design, disregards signals that would otherwise trigger airbag deployment.” This, according to the class action lawsuit, results in a “dead zone” beginning just 45 milliseconds into a crash after which occupants are completely vulnerable. General Motors has recalled millions of vehicles due to problems with the sensing and diagnostic modules, including a recall of 4 million vehicles in 2016. The modules also caused another recall of about 88,000 GMC vehicles in 2018. The GM class action lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan: Chism, et al., v. General Motors, LLC, et al. The plaintiffs are represented by the Miller Law Firm, P.C., Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP, Baron & Budd, P.C., and Birka-White Law Offices.
Hyundai Trunk Latch Recall: Emergency Releases May Fail by David A. Wood, CarComplaints.com
A Hyundai trunk latch recall has been announced for more than 348,000 vehicles because people could get trapped in the trunks without access to working internal emergency release latches. The 2017-2018 Hyundai Sonata, 2016-2018 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid, 2018-2020 Hyundai Accent and 2016-2017 Hyundai Azera trunk latches may become damaged. The damage can prevent the emergency trunk release latch to fail, a violation of federal safety standards. The Hyundai trunk latch pawl can contract and crack when exposed to high ambient (room) temperatures, causing damage to the pawl and the inability to use the emergency trunk release. Hyundai says the material used to manufacture the pawl isn’t strong enough to handle high temperatures. It’s possible a Hyundai owner will know of a problem if the trunk has trouble opening. In June, Hyundai was contacted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration asking the
automaker to look into a complaint from the owner of a 2017 Hyundai Sonata. The customer reported the trunk wouldn’t open and Hyundai learned the trunk latch assembly pawl had fractured. Hyundai had opened an investigation in 2017 after increased claims were filed in high temperature regions of the Middle East. The trunk latch assembly’s pawl material and shape was updated to better withstand the heat damage and fractures of the pawls. Hyundai dealers will replace the trunk latch assemblies once owner recall notices are mailed Oct. 1. The new trunk latch assembly pawl has improved material increasing its resistance to heat damage. Additionally, the new pawl contains steel reinforcement to prevent damage and fractures. Owners of Hyundai Sonata, Sonata Hybrid, Accent and Hyundai Azera vehicles may call 855-371-9460. Hyundai’s reference number for this recall is 208. In addition to the Hyundai trunk latch recall, Kia recalled more than 253,000 vehicles for the same problem.
62 SEPTEMBER 2021 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com
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CCC Promotes Goodson to CTO CCC Intelligent Solutions Inc. named John Goodson senior vice president and chief technology officer. Goodson joined CCC in 2020, successfully driving innovation across the business, accelerating application of AI throughout solutions and expanding industries served by the CCC Cloud platform, which today serves 30,000 businesses. Goodson succeeds Pete Morowski, who is retiring after eight years with the company. As chief technology officer, Goodson will lead research and development, product development, architecture, security, IT operations and infrastructure, business applications and data science. This will enable CCC to continue powering mission critical workflows, intelligent automation and better experiences for clients and the millions of drivers they serve. Source: CCC
Boyd Group Reports 44% Sales Increase and Demand for Labor in U.S. As the business world continues to operate nearly a year and a half into the COVID-19 pandemic, The Boyd Group announced Aug. 11 sales are up and demand has increased in the U.S. for the company’s services to the point more staff is needed, and the company acquired more locations. The Boyd Group is one of the largest operators of non-franchised collision repair centers in North America, operating under various brand names in Canada and the U.S. The company owns Gerber Collision & Glass, Gerber National Claims Processing, Glass America, Boyd Auto Body & Glass and Assured Collision Repair Professionals. “Comparing the second quarter of 2021 to the same period of 2020 demonstrates how significantly the business was impacted by the pandemic one year ago and how far we have come since that time,” Timothy O’Day, the Boyd Group president and CEO, said in an announcement Aug. 11 about the company’s second quarter of 2021 results. “During the second quarter, we saw infection numbers and restrictions decrease,
while vaccination levels increased.” The company “achieved strong same-store sales growth in the quarter,” which ended June 30. “Although we continued to experience reduced demand in certain markets at the beginning of the second quarter, demand accelerated in most U.S. markets as the quarter progressed, O’Day said in the announcement. “By the end of the second quarter, demand in the U.S. was at meaningfully higher levels than we experienced in the first quarter of 2021.” According to O’Day, the company still has work to do to meet the increasing level of demand when it comes to staff and technicians. While still at below pre-pandemic levels, demand for collision repair accelerated in the U.S. during the second quarter of 2021 “in stark contrast with the second quarter of 2020 where demand was significantly diminished due to the COVID-19 pandemic and expenses were aggressively reduced accordingly,” the announcement said. Boyd’s sales increased by 44.4% in the second quarter of 2021,
Toyota Debuts Mobile Collision Assistance Service Toyota and Lexus drivers now have a new assistance service available to them in the moments following a collision. Collision Assistance, a just-intime support service, is now available to drivers within the Toyota and Lexus mobile app. The feature within the Toyota and Lexus Owners Apps offers guided instructions to help drivers navigate a post-collision repair process.
Toyota worked with CCC Intelligent Solutions Inc., a leading SaaS platform for the multi-trillion-dollar P&C insurance economy, to develop Collison Assistance. The CCC mobile technology combines guided accident documentation and access to claims and management services to assist drivers following a collision. Toyota transmits accident and vehicle telematics data to CCC to initiate the program.
Collision Assistance is designed to let the customer choose how they’d like to handle the claim and repair processes, providing convenience and safety while also ensuring owners are informed about the process through completion. “Safety for our customers is paramount,” said Steve Basra, Toyota Motor North America, Connected Technologies group vice president. “The minutes following an accident can be critical---drivers are often confused and uncertain about what to do. By incorporating Collision Assistance into our owner app, we can offer help when it is needed. We aim to deliver innovative features to our drivers. With Collision Assistance, we’re offering additional safety and peace of mind.” Collision Assistance is an extension of the Safety Connect suite of features available to Toyota and Lexus owners who have an active subscription or are within the trial period of select 2018 model year or newer Toyota and Lexus vehicles. After the driver has confirmed they are safe and without injury, the Collision Assistance app can be used to guide drivers to collect important
64 SEPTEMBER 2021 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com
accident documentation, connect them to a network of auto insurers for optional claim submission and provide search capabilities to help locate a collision repair facility. The feature will prompt drivers through the entire process, from data gathering and insurance claim management all the way through collision repair. “Toyota is taking a comprehensive approach to post-collision management, and we’re proud to support its mission to deliver world-class safety experiences to drivers,” said Andreas Hecht, CCC’s OEM Services Group SVP. “By using CCC’s technology to establish a personal, near-real time connection with drivers, automakers can positively impact the often-stressful post-collision experience.” The Collision Assistance Feature is made available to Toyota and Lexus owners through the Owners App. Toyota and Lexus Owners App downloads are available for iPhone or Android smartphones. To learn more about Collision Assistance, visit Toyota USA on YouTube. Source: Toyota, CCC Intelligent Solutions Inc.
to $444.6 million from $308 million during the same period in 2020. The company’s cash balance was $35.6 million. Boyd acquired 39 locations, including 16 locations previously operated as John Harris Body Shops in Georgia and South Carolina. Just after the second quarter ended, Boyd followed up and acquired 39 additional locations, 35 of which operated as Collision Works in Oklahoma, Kansas and Missouri. O’Day said, as demand continues to increase in 2021 and sales are still below pre-pandemic levels, “demand is exceeding our capacity in all U.S. markets.” The company is working on adding more staff. In Canada, however, demand remains significantly lower than before the pandemic. “Looking to the balance of 2021 and beyond, we continue to be confident that we will maintain progress toward our long-term growth targets and operational plans,” O’Day said. (C) 2021 by glassbytes.com. Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved. For more information contact www.glassbytes.com.
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FTC Issues Rule to Deter Rampant Made in USA Fraud The Federal Trade Commission finalized a new rule that will crack down on marketers who make false, unqualified claims that their products are Made in the USA. Under the rule, marketers making unqualified Made in USA claims on labels should be able to prove that their products are “all or virtually all” made in the U.S. Commissioner Rohit Chopra was joined by Chair Lina Khan and Commissioner Rebecca Kelly Slaughter in a statement, which noted the rule will especially benefit small businesses that rely on the Made in USA label, but lack the resources to defend themselves from imitators. The new rule codifies a broader range of remedies by the FTC, including the ability to seek redress, damages, penalties and other relief from those who lie about a Made in USA label. It will enable the FTC for the first time to seek civil penalties of up to $43,280 per violation of the rule. While stiff penalties are not appropriate in every instance, they send a strong signal to would-be violators that they abuse the Made in USA label at their peril. “The final rule provides substantial benefits to
the public by protecting businesses from losing sales to dishonest competitors and protecting purchasers seeking to purchase American-made goods,” said Chopra. “More broadly, this long-overdue rule is an important reminder that the commission must do more to use the authorities explicitly authorized by Congress to protect market participants from fraud and abuse.” In 1994, after the North American Free Trade Agreement took effect, Congress enacted legislation authorizing the FTC to seek penalties and other relief for Made in USA fraud, but only after the commission issued a rule. However, there had long been a bipartisan consensus at the FTC that Made in USA fraud should not be penalized. The final Made in USA Labeling Rule changes course on the commission’s longtime approach. The rule does not impose any new requirements on businesses. Instead, it codifies the FTC’s longstanding enforcement policy statement regarding U.S.-origin claims. By codifying this guidance into a formal rule, the commission can increase deterrence of Made in USA fraud and seek restitution for victims.
Over the course of the rulemaking, the FTC heard from hundreds of ranchers and shrimpers concerned about Made in the USA labels that mislead consumers. The commission is pleased that in conjunction with this announcement, USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack has announced the USDA will complement the FTC’s efforts with its own initiative on labeling for products such as beef, and other agricultural products regulated by the Food Safety and Inspection Service. The commission issued a notice of proposed rulemaking for this rule in June 2020. The commission received more than 700 comments on the proposed rule, most of which either were supportive, or sought changes that were not legally permissible. The final rule adds a provision allowing marketers to seek exemptions if they have evidence showing their unqualified Made-in-USA claims are not deceptive. The Made in USA Labeling Rule, which will be published in the Federal Register, incorporates guidance set forth in the commission’s previous decisions and orders and its 1997 enforcement policy statement on U.S. origin claims.
Consistent with this guidance, the rule will prohibit marketers from including unqualified Made in USA claims on labels unless: final assembly or processing of the product occurs in the U.S., all significant processing that goes into the product occurs in the U.S. and all or virtually all ingredients or components of the product are made and sourced in the U.S. The rule applies only to labeling claims. The FTC will continue to bring enforcement action against marketers that make deceptive U.S.-origin claims falling outside the rule under Section 5 of the Federal Trade Commission Act. The FTC is authorized to seek penalties for violations of the rule. It does not supersede, alter or affect any other federal statute or regulation relating to country-of-origin labels. The commission vote approving publication of the final Made in USA Labeling Rule in the Federal Register was 3-2. Commissioner Christine Wilson also issued a dissenting statement on the rule, and another dissenting statement regarding the overall meeting agenda. Source: FTC
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