S OUTHE AS T E DITIO N
AL / FL / GA / MS / NC / SC / TN / VA / WV
Driven Brands Acquires Tennessee-Based Jack Morris Auto Glass Driven Brands Holdings Inc. announced the continued expansion of its auto glass offering in the U.S. with the acquisition of longstanding Tennessee-based Jack Morris Auto Glass. Family-owned and operated since 1951, Jack Morris Auto Glass grew from one location in Downtown Memphis to 10 facilities serving 90 counties throughout the MidSouth and Middle Tennessee. “To build and sustain a business through multiple generations is no easy feat,” said Michael Macaluso, EVP and paint, collision and glass
group president, Driven Brands. “We are proud to welcome another leading operator to our growing glass division, where we can apply our scale and resources to enhance
See Jack Morris, Page 11
Company Says it Has Recent Auto Body Shop Estimate Data for Sale by John Yoswick
The ongoing discussion about auto body shop data privacy at the quarterly Collision Industry Conference (CIC) meetings took a new turn this summer when an association leader described what a data aggregator company had recently offered to sell to his organization. Aaron Schulenburg, executive director of the Society of Collision Repair Specialists (SCRS), said the company contacted him, after speaking with one of SCRS’s state affiliate groups, to see if SCRS might be
interested in acquiring data it has on recently-written collision repair quotes. The company, which Schulenburg did not identify by name, told him the information could be used by SCRS member shops to contact consumers who received a recent estimate to say, “Hey, I know you’ve gotten a recent quote, and our business could do the work for you.” Schulenburg asked what type of information was available. The company told him, “through our data aggregation partners and proSee Data for Sale, Page 18
Vol. 13 / Issue 7 / September 2022
Tesla to Pay $10.5M for 1% Negligence in 2018 Model S Crash by Maria Merano, Teslarati
On July 19, a Fort Lauderdale, FL, federal jury released its verdict on a 2018 Tesla Model S crash that resulted in 18-year-old Barrett Riley’s death. The jury found Tesla 1% negligent for the Model S accident and ruled the victim and his father were 99% at fault. The six-person jury found Barrett Riley was 90% to blame for the crash, while his father, James Riley, was 9% liable and his mother, Jenny Riley, was 0% responsible.
As per Bloomberg, the jury also ruled James and Jenny Riley sustained $10.5 million in pain and suffering damages for their son’s death. On May 8, 2018, Barrett Riley drove his father’s Model S with his friends. Riley lost control of the vehicle while driving 116 mph. The Model S hit the concrete wall of a house in Fort Lauderdale and caught on fire. Riley and one of his passengers died, while a third person survived the crash. James Riley filed a product liability suit against Tesla in Florida See Tesla to Pay $10.5M, Page 11
SEMA Show to Feature Educational Program Focused on Personal and Professional Development Dozens of industry leaders and experts will take the stage at the 2022 SEMA Show Education Program, where attendees will have the opportunity to learn about current and future trends, proven business strategies and new opportunities while at the annual event taking place in November in Las Vegas. Beginning Oct. 31—the day before the official opening of the four-day SEMA Show—the 2022 SEMA Show Education Program will include more than 70 free and premium sessions within 14 tracks. Showgoers may choose individual sessions across different tracks, mixing and matching the offerings to create a personalized agenda that meets one’s individual needs. “The Education Program is one of the SEMA Show’s key pillars, and it’s always been highly rated by participants,” said Pamela Brown-Matthis, SEMA director of education. “We challenged ourselves and pushed to make the program better than ever. We focused heavily on bringing in elite subject matter
experts and high-profile industry leaders. SEMA Show attendees are encouraged to take advantage of the opportunity to hear from industry experts while at the show.”
SEMA Show attendees can learn about current and future trends, proven business strategies and new opportunities from industry leaders and experts as part of the 2022 SEMA Show Education Program.
New this year are four sessions focused on challenges and opportunities associated with Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) in the workplace. The first DEI session, “Diversity and Inclusion: How You Can Advance Equal Opportunity in Your Workplace,” See SEMA Show, Page 20
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REGIONAL Atlanta Single Mother Receives Reliable Transportation Courtesy of NABC Recycled
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Serving Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Virginia, West Virginia, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina 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. ©2022 Adamantine Media LLC.
Accudraft Paint Booths ���������������������������������� 56
Hyundai Wholesale Parts Dealers ������������������ 55
American Icon Automotive Finishes ��������������� 22
Industrial Finishes and Systems ��������������������� 43
Audi Gwinnett ������������������������������������������������ 32
Kia Motors Wholesale Parts Dealers �������������� 51
Audi Wholesale Parts Dealers ������������������������ 49
KSI Auto Parts �������������������������������������������������� 8
Auto Data Labels ���������������������������������������������� 5
Landers Chrysler-Dodge-Jeep ������������������������ 26
AutoNation Ford-Lincoln �������������������������������� 30
Launch Tech USA ������������������������������������������� 33
Axalta Coating Systems ����������������������������������� 7
LKQ Corporation ��������������������������������������������� 39
Beaman CDJR Wholesale Parts ��������������������� 35
Mazda Wholesale Parts Dealers ��������������������� 50
BendPak ����������������������������������������������������������� 9
Mercedes-Benz Wholesale Parts Dealers ������� 50
Car-O-Liner ����������������������������������������������������� 19
Miami Lakes Automall ������������������������������������ 10
Carworx Distribution, Inc. ������������������������������ 21
MINI of Charleston ����������������������������������������� 38
Month a Year Ago ��������������������������������������� 50
Certified Automotive Parts Association ���������� 18
MOPAR Wholesale Parts Dealers ������������������� 41
GM Offering EV Education ��������������������������������� 8
City Kia of Greater Orlando ����������������������������� 48
NOROO Paint & Coatings �������������������������������� 17
Classifieds ������������������������������������������������������ 54
Parks Chevrolet ���������������������������������������������� 40
Dale Earnhardt Jr. Chevrolet ��������������������������� 34
PPG ���������������������������������������������������������������� 15
Dominion Sure Seal, Ltd ��������������������������������� 16
Rick Hendrick Chevrolet Naples ��������������������� 38
Eagle Abrasives ��������������������������������������������� 23
Rogers-Dabbs Chevrolet ��������������������������������� 45
Equalizer Auto Glass Tools ������������������������������� 6
SATA Dan-Am Company ��������������������������������� 2
Ford Wholesale Parts Dealers ������������������������ 55
SEMA Trade Show ����������������������������������������� 25
GM Wholesale Parts Dealers ������������������������� 52
Shoot Suit ������������������������������������������������������ 11
Gus Machado Ford ����������������������������������������� 42
Spanesi Americas ������������������������������������������ 37
Harper Volkswagen ���������������������������������������� 31
Steck Manufacturing Company ���������������������� 20
Hendrick Automotive Group ��������������������������� 47
Stivers Decatur Subaru ���������������������������������� 44
Hendrick Honda Pompano Beach ������������������� 36
Subaru Wholesale Parts Dealers �������������������� 53
Hendrick Kia Cary ������������������������������������������� 24
Sunmight USA ������������������������������������������ 12-13
Hendrick Kia Concord ������������������������������������� 24
Symach ���������������������������������������������������������� 14
Hendrick Volvo Cars of Charleston ����������������� 48
Tameron Hyundai ������������������������������������������� 46
Honda-Acura Wholesale Parts Dealers � 27, 28-29
Volkswagen Wholesale Parts Dealers ������������ 50
Business with a Buyer in Mind ������������������� 36 Yoswick - Gerber Collision CEO Talks Parts, Personnel Challenges ���������������������������������� 34
Rides®, GEICO, Classic Collision �������������������� 6 CARSTAR Car Crafters Opens in Blue Ridge, GA � 6
Chesapeake, VA-Area Service Members
3M, CREF Donate Products to 300 Schools ���� 55
Receive Gift of Reliable Transportation ���������� 8 Driven Brands Acquires Tennessee-Based Jack Morris Auto Glass ��������������������������������� 1 Georgia Taxpayers to Provide $1.8B in Incentives to Hyundai for New EV Plant ������ 10 Hyundai and Hyundai of Asheville Donate $20,000 to Special Olympics North Carolina �� 14 Mississippi Welcomes Its First Tesla Store ����� 14 Nashville First Responders Learn New Rescue Skills through NABC F.R.E.E.™ Program ������� 8 Tesla to Pay $10.5M for 1% Negligence in 2018 Model S Crash ������������������������������������� 1 Volkswagen Starts Assembly of All-Electric ID.4 in Chattanooga, TN ������������������������������ 16
INDEX OF ADVERTISERS
Agenda Announced for CONNEX 2022 �������������� 4 AirPro Diagnostics, CCC Partner ���������������������� 50 Appeals Court Rejects GM’s Attempt to
Autobody News P.O. Box 1516 Carlsbad, CA 92018 (800) 699-8251 (760) 603-3229 Fax www.autobodynews.com email@example.com
Overturn FCA Racketeering Lawsuit Ruling � 31 Audi, VW Vehicles Recalled Airbags ��������������� 14 CIECA Forms AI Committee ���������������������������� 49 Collision Repair Association Conducting Study of Blend Time Formula ���������������������� 49 Company Says it Has Recent Auto Body Shop Estimate Data for Sale ����������������������������������� 1 CREF Invites Collision Industry to Fall 2022 High School & College Transportation Student Career Fairs ������������������������������������ 55 CREF Raises $100,000 at Golf Fundraiser ������� 20 Ford’s July Sales Up 37% Compared to Same
COLUMNISTS Anderson - Don’t Let Higher Sales Take Your Eye Off the Ball ������������������������������������������� 24 Attanasio - Forward-Thinking Program Creating Great Auto Body Techs of the Future ���������� 44 Attanasio - How is Your Auto Body Shop Dealing with the Great Resignation? ����������� 32 Attanasio - Mike’s Auto Body Gave Away 100 Cars in 21 Years, Changing Countless Lives �� 46 Phillips - How to Profit from ADAS Services and Calibration—It’s Not Just About the Targets �������������������������������������������������� 26 Phillips - Lemonade to Use Mitchell’s Claim Solutions for Newest Product ��������������������� 52 Phillips - OEM Roundtable Working to Improve Quality of Collision Repair ��������������������������� 38 Phillips - Repairify’s New Partnership with ATG Will Provide Industry with Advanced Diagnostic Training �������������������������������������� 42 Phillips - Technician/Painter Recovering from Severe Burns Recognized During 11th Annual CIF Gala ������������������������������������������� 48 Strandberg - Build Your Collision Repair
Hyundai Gets $19.2 Million Penalty for Tarnishing Millions of Customer Credit Reports ��������������������������������������������� 54 Lightning Strikes Across America: Customer Deliveries Now Stretch Across All 50 U.S. States ����������������������������������������������������������� 4 Lordstown Reaffirms Endurance Pickup Production for Q3 ������������������������������������������ 4 Ohio Groups, Lawmakers Praise CHIPS Act Passed to Boost Intel Investment ���������������� 22 Rivian Amazon Vans Delivered 430K-Plus Packages During Pilot Program ������������������� 40 SEMA Show to Feature Educational Program Focused on Personal and Professional Development ������������������������������������������������� 1 Tesla Cybertruck Prices, Specs to Change, Probably Be Worth It ����������������������������������� 20 TikTok’s Latest ‘Kia Challenge’ Encourages Users to Steal Cars ������������������������������������� 22 YANG Announces TopGolf Fundraiser �������������� 11
autobodynews.com / SEPTEMBER 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS 3
Lightning Strikes Across America: Customer Deliveries Now Stretch Across All 50 U.S. States That was quick—lightning quick. In just two months, Ford has delivered electric F-150 Lightning trucks to customers in all 50 U.S. states, from the shores of the Kenai River in Alaska to Houston and even Hawaii.
Texas—the truck capital of America—and California—the EV capital of America—lead the way with the highest number of F-150 Lightning deliveries through late July. Early customers have discovered F-150 Lightning can handle a variety of needs, regardless of where they are located. Take for
instance Jeff and Tammy Head, owners of both an F-150 and now an F-150 Lightning, who have primarily used their new electric truck to tow a boat from Anchorage to Kenai River, about a three-hour drive, for salmon fishing. “From the time we watched it at the reveal, we knew that we wanted it,” Tammy Head said. “We had no doubt that this truck will have trademark Ford quality which gave us the confidence to transition to an electric vehicle.” “And the guy in me likes having the baddest truck on the planet,” Jeff Head added. Among the most popular and most-photographed features of the F-150 Lightning so far is the Mega Power Frunk. Owners are using the 400 liters of space1 to store gear and are taking advantage of the 2.4 kW of Pro Power Onboard in the frunk to help power their campsite
or charge their power tools while driving. “This truck is a workhorse. We have driven more than 3,000 miles already and towed and carried hundreds of pounds of concrete in the frunk,” said Emre Gol of Texas, who uses his F-150 Lightning Lariat pickup for work at his kitchen and bathroom remodeling business.
“This truck is a workhorse. We have driven more than 3,000 miles already and towed and carried hundreds of pounds of concrete in the frunk,” — Emre Gol Recently, he helped his neighbor’s wife, who was away from home with only six miles of charge left on her electric sedan’s battery. Gol connected his F-150 Lightning with the sedan’s charging adapter and provided enough energy to safely get her back home. Ford’s newest truck is winning EV fans. Nearly 80% of early reservation holders said in a survey that
Lordstown Reaffirms Endurance Pickup Production for Q3 by Joey Klender, Teslarati
Lordstown Motors reaffirmed its plans to start production of the Endurance all-electric pickup during the third quarter of 2022, while reporting its earnings for Q2 in early August.
In the company’s Q2 Shareholder Deck, it listed several outlooks for the future, as Lordstown has struggled to begin production of the pickup. Struggling with cash flow and having trouble keeping its doors open, Lordstown formed a joint venture with Foxconn, with the automaker becoming the company’s primary development partner for EV
development in North America. Lordstown expects Q3 to see the start of commercial production, while deliveries should begin in Q4, it said. However, the company only expects to produce around 500 units through early 2023. “In Q2, we made significant progress towards our plan to launch the Endurance in Q3 of 2022 and begin sales in Q4. We look forward to getting the Endurance into customers’ hands, as we think they are going to love it,” said Edward Hightower, CEO of Lordstown Motors. Hightower also hinted that Lordstown and Foxconn’s first project as a joint venture is currently undergoing “pre-development work.” In terms of financials, Lordstown CFO Adam Kroll noted the automaker will need to raise more money to support the 500-unit production goal. However, Lordstown only requires between $50 million
4 SEPTEMBER 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com
F-150 Lightning will be the first full EV in their household. “The Lightning is the best thing I have ever purchased,” said Chris Ashley, a resident of Maryland and a first-time electric vehicle buyer. “With this truck, I can enhance my love of tailgating while at the same time play a small role in creating a better planet for
and $75 million to accomplish this, a substantial reduction from the $150 million it said it would need earlier this year.
“In Q2, we made significant progress towards our plan to launch the Endurance in Q3 of 2022 and begin sales in Q4. We look forward to getting the Endurance into customers’ hands, as we think they are going to love it,” — Edward Hightower Lordstown reported an operating profit for the first time in its history, but it did not come from the sale of any vehicles, obviously. Instead, Foxconn’s acquisition of the company’s Ohio production facility is where the realized gains came from.
my children.” Ashley has contemplated purchasing an EV for the past couple of years before his wife, Emily, convinced him to buy the F-150 Lightning. Ford has sold more than 4,400 F-150 Lightning electric trucks in the U.S. and Canada (YTD). Source: Ford
Agenda Announced for CONNEX 2022 CIECA announced its agenda and speakers for the upcoming CIECA CONNEX Conference, to be held Sept. 13-14 in St. Louis/St. Charles, MO. In addition to a line-up of top industry speakers, there will be networking opportunities, a gifting ceremony by the National Auto Body Council® (NABC) as part of its NABC Recycled Rides® program, CIECA’s open annual meeting and a tour of Hunter Engineering. This year’s theme is “CIECA Next Gen: Evolving to Meet the Needs of the Collision Industry.” All industry stakeholders, including CIECA members and non-members, are invited to attend. Conference attendees are eligible to receive credit toward a professional designation from the Automotive Management Institute (AMi). The day prior to the conference, NABC will be holding the Boone Valley Golf Club Fundraiser in Augusta, MO. Source: CIECA
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autobodynews.com / SEPTEMBER 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS 5
Atlanta Single Mother Receives Reliable Transportation Courtesy of NABC Recycled Rides®, GEICO, Classic Collision by Victoria Antonelli
On Aug. 10, Nicole Watson and her 6-year-old daughter, Sophia, received a refurbished 2021 Nissan Versa courtesy of the National Auto Body Council (NABC) Recycled Rides® program, along with car donor GEICO and repairer Classic Collision Sandy Springs in Georgia. Watson is a recent graduate of the Atlanta-based nonprofit Every Woman Works, founded by Tillie O’Neal-Kyles in 2004. According to the organization’s website, Every Woman Works helps women in challenging situations transition from “dependency to self-sufficiency.” “I founded Every Woman Works on the premise that instead of giving women fish and only feeding them for a day, we teach them how to fish, so they can feed themselves, their children and their communities,” said O’Neal-Kyles, who attended the event. O’Neal-Kyles said Watson missed out on a job opportunity due to lack of transportation. Short-
ly after, Nora DePalma, president and CEO of Dialogue Marketing, contacted O’Neal-Kyles to see if she had any candidates for the NABC Recycled Rides program. O’Neal-Kyles said she immediate-
The famous GEICO Gecko accompanies Sophia Watson, center, and Nicole Watson, right, as they pose with their refurbished 2021 Nissan Versa
ly pitched Watson, and soon after, DePalma confirmed Watson as the recipient. “I’m so grateful for this gift; in disbelief, but grateful,” Watson said. “It has been a long journey. There were moments I wanted to
CARSTAR Car Crafters Opens in Blue Ridge, GA CARSTAR, North America’s fastest growing network of independently owned and operated collision repair facilities, celebrated the opening of CARSTAR Car Crafters, located at 80 Scenic Drive, Blue Ridge, GA 30513. Jeff Beavers, owner of CARSTAR Car Crafters, began his career in the collision repair industry at the age of 18. He grew up around cars, as his father spent his free time painting vehicles. Through this, he became familiar with the different aspects of collision repair and opened his first facility when he was 26. Beavers and his wife, Lori, opened this facility in 1999. From here, Beavers has worked to build an incredible team, with many members having worked for him for more than 15 years. Beavers’ general manager came on board 10 years ago and has helped significantly increase revenue. “Joining CARSTAR is the best way to help grow my business,” said Beavers. “I have been working in the repair side of the business for most of my career. But now, I’m
ready to grow and I am excited to leverage the support CARSTAR provides to help reach our goals.” CARSTAR Car Crafters is a 14,000-square foot facility with 16 trained, dedicated and hardworking employees. In addition, the facility is I-CAR Gold certified and has various OEM certifications. “CARSTAR provides our owners with training, equipment and operations support to help grow their business and exceed customer expectations,” said Dean Fisher, collision group president, Driven Brands. “With Jeff’s extensive experience in the industry, coupled with the robust support of CARSTAR, we know the sky is the limit for this team and their growth potential.” Beaver and his team are committed to serving their community. CARSTAR Car Crafters donates resources to local schools and sports teams year-round. The team looks forward to continuing to give back to their community and becoming involved with new charitable initiatives. Please join us in welcoming CARSTAR Car Crafters to our growing CARSTAR family.
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give up, but at the end of the day my daughter needs me and depends on me. That’s why I’m so thankful for what Every Women Works has taught me, and now this! I can’t believe it.” Watson added that her car, which came with a trunk full of goodies and a brand new bike for Sophia, not only provides Watson with reliable transportation, but also allows her to aid other women. “This has been an absolutely amazing experience,” said J.R. Carter, GEICO salvage analyst. “Donating vehicles to the Recycled Rides program is a way we can give back and hold a philanthropic position in the community. We aim to donate 30 cars per region annually.” Classic Collision Sandy Springs hosted the event, and several representatives attended. “Getting to be a part of the recipient’s life-changing moment is unreal,” said Ray Triscik, Classic Collision area vice president of operations in Georgia and Tennessee. Classic Collison has 190 locations from Miami, FL, to Anchor-
age, AK. “It’s really cool to see how many companies come together for such a great cause,” said Jason Lowry, PPG strategic accounts director. “It’s emotional, certainly for the family who receives the car, but also for everyone helping out. “I’ve been a part of number of these events and it’s always really special to see how this vehicle can transform their life.” PPG donated paint products for the 2021 Nissan Versa refinishing process. “Classic Collision has been a terrific member of the National Auto Body Council,” said Debby Robinson, head of NABC public relations, marketing and advertising. “It’s great to see their success as they give back to the communities where they do business. This is their fifth NABC Recycled Ride this year, and they say there are more to come.”
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autobodynews.com / SEPTEMBER 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS 7
GM Offering EV Education As part of its mission to make EV ownership accessible to all, General Motors on July 25 launched EV Live, an immersive, virtual experience that allows participants to interact oneon-one with EV specialists and learn everything about electric vehicles—for free. EV Live allows anyone to connect with an EV specialist from any internet-connected mobile or desktop device. These EV specialists will answer EV-related questions in real time and give virtual tours of the EV Live studio, which houses real EVs and dynamic displays of home charging, public charging, battery technology, sustainability, commercial applications, EV apps and more. EV specialists can also guide participants through the home charging installation process and refer them to certified installers. For more information, visit evlive.gm.com. Source: GM
Chesapeake, VA-Area Service Members Receive Gift of Reliable Transportation On Aug. 11, Caliber teammates and representatives from USAA and National Auto Body Council Recycled Rides® gifted vehicles to 10 active-duty service members in Chesapeake, VA.
ference in the lives of others.” This gifting marks 25 of 46 vehicles Caliber teammates are restoring to like-new condition throughout 2022, and more than 500 vehicles restored and gifted since 2012. The vehicles will benefit active-duty service members and military veterans in need of reliable transportation across the country.
“We take Caliber’s purpose of Restoring the Rhythm of Your Life very seriously and embody it every day,” — Paul Krauss “Gifting vehicles to the men and women who give so much of themselves daily for our country is an honor. It is just one of the ways that Caliber lives by our purpose, Restoring the Rhythm of Your Life®,” said Caliber CEO and President Mark Sanders. “We are incredibly proud of our Caliber teammates whose technical expertise makes these giftings possible. They are passionate about serving their community and making a dif-
USAA, in partnership with NABC Recycled Rides, provides the vehicles to Caliber, then Caliber’s skilled auto body repair technicians volunteer their time and expertise to restore them. Typically, nonprofits nominate recipients. In this case, all 10 were nominated by Armed Services YMCA. The gift of reliable transportation helps recipients better manage daily activities, such as commuting to work, medical ap-
Nashville First Responders Learn New Rescue Skills through NABC F.R.E.E.™ Program More than 30 first responders from fire departments in Nashville, TN, and surrounding areas gathered June 25 for a hands-on demonstration of the latest techniques in emergency vehicle extrication, preparing them to provide the best response for car accident victims. The training was thanks to the National Auto Body Council® (NABC) First Responder Emergency Extrication™ (F.R.E.E.) program, Gerber Collison & Glass, Nissan North America and Genesis Rescue Systems. When drivers in Nashville and surrounding areas have an accident, they rely on the community’s first responders to be there to help them to safety. And when they are driving a late-model vehicle with numerous airbags, advanced technology or electric/ hybrid engines, the rescue can be more challenging. “As a Nashville resident, this NABC F.R.E.E. event was extra special,” said Kyle Mederios, chair of the NABC F.R.E.E. committee. “Being able to witness firsthand the
pointments, school and more. “We take Caliber’s purpose of Restoring the Rhythm of Your Life very seriously and embody it every day,” said Executive Vice President of Operations, Northeast, Paul Krauss. “Seeing the cars lined up for this gifting made me proud of my fellow teammates and the support given to our military community.”
scenarios first responders are presented with and the quick, precise thinking they must perform gave me an even greater respect for them. As a result of this event and our great partnerships with Geber Collision & Glass, Nissan North America and Genesis Rescue Systems, we’re already working to host another event soon.” The NABC F.R.E.E. program helps first responders stay abreast of the rapid changes in vehicle design, including highstrength steel, airbags, advanced restraint systems and onboard technology. Alternative fuel systems found in electric and hybrid vehicles present new challenges for first responders on the accident scene. Gerber Collision & Glass at 999 Polk Ave. in Nashville hosted the first responders. Nissan North America provided the vehicles, and Genesis Rescue System supplied the classroom education and extrication demonstration. Source: NABC
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Caliber previously gifted vehicles in San Antonio and Nashville and will present the remaining cars to recipients in California, North Carolina, Arizona and Texas. This program is a part of Caliber’s Restoring You™ community platform, which serves teammates, customers and communities alike. Visit the Caliber website to learn more about Restoring You and its history of NABC Recycled Rides giftings. Source: Caliber
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Georgia Taxpayers to Provide $1.8B in Incentives to Hyundai for New EV Plant by T.A. DeFeo, The Center Square
Georgia governments and development authorities offered Hyundai Motor Group more than $1.8 billion in incentives.
In May, Hyundai said it had selected Georgia for its first fully dedicated electric vehicle and battery manufacturing facility. The plan calls for Hyundai to invest more than $5.5 billion in building the facility in the 2,923-acre Bryan County Megasite along Interstate 16, while non-affiliated Hyundai suppliers plan to invest roughly $1 billion in the project. Hyundai received a 26-year property tax abatement and will begin making “leasehold ad valorem property tax payments” starting in 2026 after it completes the initial construction of its facility. State officials said Hyundai would pay more than $357 million during the period.
Under the deal, Georgia will give Hyundai a $50 million Regional Economic Business Assistance grant—doled out in a pair of $25 million payments—to help pay for site development, building or equipment purchases. It will also give a $112.6 million grant to the Savannah Harbor-Interstate 16 Corridor JDA for wetlands mitigation, additional land acquisition and site clearing and grading. The state will provide a dedicated Quick Start Training Center, expected to cost $62.5 million. The Peach State will also cover operating costs and training services for five years, at an estimated cost of nearly $5 million per year. Economic development officials plan to ask state lawmakers to allocate an additional $10.6 million for the Technical College System of Georgia to expand the existing Georgia Quick Start Advanced Manufacturing Training Center in Savannah. The Georgia Department of Transportation plans to make $200 million in road improvements. Additionally, nearly $6.9 million in
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state funding will go toward a rail extension to the project site for the Georgia Central Railway, a Genesee & Wyoming subsidiary.
According to state documents, the Savannah Harbor-Interstate 16 Corridor Joint Development Authority is expected to invest more than $71.8 million. The JDA contributed $18 million to purchase the original three BCMS parcels, while a state grant funded an additional $43 million to purchase the site. Officials said the project would create 8,100 jobs with an average salary of $58,105. Under the deal, by the end of 2031, Hyundai
and its suppliers must meet 80% of their commitment to invest $5.5 billion and create 8,100; they must maintain the jobs through 2048. “When fully staffed, the estimated payroll generated by the HMGMA project alone will reach $4.7 billion over 10 years,” Georgia Department of Economic Development Commissioner Pat Wilson said in a statement to The Center Square. “As we work together to deliver a state-of-the-art facility in Bryan County that will provide well-paying jobs to Georgians, we know Hyundai Motor Group will give back to the region, investing in our schools, families and communities, and we are grateful for those planned investments.” Georgia officials point to their “history of partnership” with Hyundai, saying it is “a window into what a great community and corporate partner the company will be for decades to come.” Hyundai has a controlling stake in Kia Corporation, which in 2009 agreed to invest $1.2 billion in a manufacturing plant in West Point and create 2,500 jobs.
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Jack Morris their operations and provide a platform for these talented people to continue to advance in their careers. We look forward to continuing the Jack Morris legacy of exceptional customer service through our added support.” Jack Morris Auto Glass spans three generations, with brothers John and Paul Morris leading the business through continued expansion, while still maintaining its commitment to delivering the highest level of customer service and repair quality. “John and I chose to sell to Driven Brands because we want what is best for our people and customers,” Continued from Cover
Tesla to Pay $10.5M federal court in 2020. In his complaint, Riley claimed the vehicle’s lithium-ion batteries “burst into an uncontrollable and fatal fire” after his son crashed. The Riley family argued Barrett might have survived the accident if the Model S hadn’t caught on fire because of a defective Tesla battery design. On June 29, a judge dismissed the Rileys’ claim about a defect in Tesla’s lithium-ion battery cells and battery pack before the trial started. The family also noted Tesla removed the speed-limiting device Jenny Riley requested for the Model S, designed to cap the vehicle’s
said Paul Morris. “Their team was great to work with throughout the transaction process, and we believe Driven Brands is well positioned to continue the Jack Morris legacy of happy employees and happy customers. I’m excited to have Driven Brands take this business to the next level as they nurture the exceptional talent on our team and help grow their careers while staying true to our longstanding roots and values.” Driven Brands offers auto glass repairers with resources, industry expertise, and purchasing power. Any auto glass owner-operators interested in selling to the Driven Glass family can contact erika. email@example.com for more information. Source: Driven Brands speed at 85 mph. However, Tesla’s lawyers argued the teenager told the company’s service center staff to remove the speed limiter on the Model S. A testimony from one of Barrett Riley’s friends revealed the 18-yearold “tricked” a Tesla technician into deactivating the limiter. “A driver makes the car safe, the speed limiter does not,” Tesla’s lawyers told the Florida jurors. Tesla CEO Elon Musk reached out to James Riley a few days after his son’s death. Riley, a father of seven, asked Musk to acknowledge the death of his son and his friend “led to the enhanced safety of others.” Following the request, Tesla updated its release notes for Speed Limit Mode with a dedication: “In memory of Barrett Riley.”
YANG Announces TopGolf Fundraiser The Young Auto Care Network Group (YANG), an Auto Care Association community of young industry professionals, is partnering with the Automotive Aftermarket Charitable Foundation (AACF) to raise support for the foundation through a nationwide TopGolf event Sept. 8. In continuing its effort to provide support to members of the auto care industry, YANG is proud to once again partner with AACF to bring the auto care community together while raising funds that will provide resources, guidance, financial support
and more to those in need. Six major TopGolf locations across the country will host events for the fundraiser, with the support of industry sponsors: Atlanta, GA, Midtown location; Denver, CO, Thornton location; Detroit, MI, Auburn Hills location; Houston, TX, Katy location; Omaha, NE; and San Antonio, TX Contact Danielle King at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. Source: Auto Care Association
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Audi, VW Vehicles Recalled Airbags by David A. Wood, CarComplaints.com
Exploding Audi and Volkswagen passenger airbags have caused a recall of more than 1,200 of these vehicles. 2016 Audi TT Roadster 2016 Audi TT Coupe 2016 Audi S3 Sedan 2016 Audi R8 Coupe 2016 Audi A3 Sedan 2016 Audi A3 e-tron 2016 Audi A3 Cabriolet 2016 Volkswagen Golf Sportwagen 2016 Volkswagen Golf R 2016 Volkswagen Golf GTI 2016 Volkswagen Golf A7 2016 Volkswagen e-Golf Dealers will replace the passenger airbag modules once owner recall letters are mailed Sept. 23. Owners may contact Volkswagen at 800-893-5298 or Audi customer service at 800253-2834. Volkswagen’s and Audi’s recall numbers are 69DY and 61C1.
Hyundai and Hyundai of Asheville Donate $20,000 to Special Olympics North Carolina Hyundai Motor America and Hyundai of Asheville recently donated a total of $20,000 to the Special Olympics North Carolina (SONC), an organization that uses the transformative power of sports to improve the lives of children and adults with intellectual disabilities, in support of the Automotive Industry Running Group. A ceremonial check was presented to SONC in Asheville, NC. “Hyundai is passionate about building better communities to support our progress for humanity vision, which begins with those that we live, work and do business in,” said Brandon Ramirez, director, corporate social responsibility and external relations, Hyundai Motor North America. “We are grateful for the collaboration with our journalist and dealer partners to support organizations like Special Olympics North Carolina that create opportunities and support the mission of inclusion.” Created by automotive journalists, the Automotive Industry Running Group hosted a 15-day virtual running challenge, after which
Hyundai donated $25 to SONC for every mile ran between July 1529, up to $10,000. SONC received $10,000 after the interest group
tives to improve the health status and increase access to community health resources for individuals with intellectual disabilities. As
“We’re so very grateful for Hyundai’s support as well as the innovative work of the Automotive Industry Running Group,” — Keith L. Fishburne logged over 660 miles during the 15 days. Hyundai of Asheville donated an additional $10,000 to the cause. “We created the Automotive Industry Running Group out of our passion for running and physical activity,” said Jill Ciminillo, managing editor, Pickup Truck + SUV Talk and vice president, Chicago Area Runners Association. “With the support of Hyundai and its generous donation, we are proud to see how a shared interest can transcend our journalist community and impact the broader athlete community.” Special Olympics North Carolina offers year-round training and competition in 20 Olympic-type sports on local and state levels as well as health and wellness initia-
athletes are never asked to pay for their involvement in Special Olympics, this donation will ensure that athletes have quality training and competition events in the form of regional invitationals and state-level competitions. “We’re so very grateful for Hyundai’s support as well as the innovative work of the Automotive Industry Running Group,” said Keith L. Fishburne, president and CEO, Special Olympics North Carolina. “Special Olympics athletes deserve the same quality sports experiences as anyone else. Hyundai’s support will help to ensure that happens.” Source: Hyundai Motor America
Mississippi Welcomes Its First Tesla Store by Johnna Crider, Teslarati
Mississippi welcomed its first Tesla store with a ribbon-cutting ceremony. WJTV reported Tesla opened its first “dealership” in Brandon, MS, and those attending the ceremony were able to test drive some of the vehicles.
Credit: Brandon042 on Facebook
The Mississippi Tesla store is a 25,000-square foot building Mayor Butch Lee said wasn’t a
typical dealership. “This is not a typical dealership. This is a build it and bring it to the consumer,” Lee said. The new store used to be Courthouse Fitness and a physical rehabilitation center for UMMC. Local developer RCI, LLC, and Trihelm Properties have been working together to bring Tesla to Brandon. In May, it was noted this would be for a Tesla store, making it the first of its kind for Mississippi. The city of Brandon shared a short message of welcome To Tesla on its Facebook page. In the photo above, members of the local community got to see the Tesla Model X do its Chrismas carol dance. For Brandon, Tesla brought Christmas in July.
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How Waterborne Technology Can Improve Cycle Time Performance The number of color coats required to make a refinish repair is one
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Given that refinishing most often calls for blending, how efficient a system can perform an accurate repair and eliminate chances for redos 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 10-15 minutes. The system’s EN-V® Series clearcoat line offers fast bake times as short as 10 minutes. To ensure color accuracy, the basecoat’s latex particles orient
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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 it can significantly reduce sprayouts. Comprised of thousands of variant and prime color chips, each chip is sprayed with actual autobodynews.com / SEPTEMBER 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS 15
Volkswagen Starts Assembly of All-Electric ID.4 in Chattanooga, TN Volkswagen of America on July 26 marked the start of production of its all-electric ID.4 compact SUV in Chattanooga, TN, the company’s first electric vehicle assembled in the U.S. The ID.4 is Volkswagen Group’s most popular all-electric model, with 190,000 units delivered to customers globally since its launch in 2021. Volkswagen aims to ramp up ID.4 assembly in Chattanooga to 7,000 vehicles per month later this year, with the goal to further increase output through 2023. Consumers can expect vehicles to be delivered as early as October 2022. Initially, the American-assembled ID.4 will be available in either rear-wheel- or all-wheel-drive 82kWh battery form. In addition, a rear-wheel-drive version with a 62kWh battery will go into production later in 2022, with a lower MSRP. “We’re just starting to write a new chapter for Volkswagen in America, and it is very much an American story,” said Thomas Schäfer, chairman of the glob-
al Volkswagen brand. “When we promised to bring Volkswagen EVs to the millions, it always included American workers building those EVs right there in Chattanooga. We couldn’t be prouder to see that vision realized today with our ID.4 electric flagship rolling off the lines. This is another milestone in Volkswagen’s ambitious electrification strategy for the U.S. market and globally.” The start of production is the result of Volkswagen’s $800 million investment into the electrification of its Chattanooga factory, including dedicated facilities for vehicle and battery pack assembly. The factory in Tennessee is now the sixth global site to produce vehicles for Volkswagen’s electric line-up. The American-assembled ID.4, Volkswagen’s electric SUV flagship, will be mainly sourced in the North American region, particularly the U.S. The vehicle includes materials and components assembled in 11 U.S. states, from steel in Alabama and Ohio, to interior parts in Indiana and South Carolina, and electronics components in
16 SEPTEMBER 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com
Kentucky and North Carolina. The EV battery will be supplied by SK Innovation located in Georgia. As part of the preparation to launch the ID.4, suppliers have invested $2.7 billion throughout the North American continent, including the battery partnership with SK Innovation. More than 3,000 U.S. jobs on supplier side have been created.
“There has been a tremendous effort by thousands of VW Chattanooga employees to bring this vision to life,” said Chris Glover, president and CEO, Volkswagen Chattanooga Operations, LLC. “I’d like to thank all our highly motivated team members and the extended community of Chattanooga for
supporting us as we begin assembly of the ID.4 for the North American market.” Volkswagen Chattanooga employs more than 4,000 people, and is actively hiring more than 1,000 new production team members through 2022, to help meet high customer demand for the ID.4 and Atlas SUV family. To prepare for the EV transition, the factory has organized more than 75,000 hours of workforce training on battery-powered vehicle and high-voltage systems. Volkswagen has committed $7.1 billion over the next five years in the North American region to boost its product portfolio, regional R&D and manufacturing capabilities. The brand will advance its electric line-up through 2030, including the American-assembled ID.4 in 2022, a fastback sedan and the ID. Buzz electric microbus in 2024, and new electric SUVs from 2026. Volkswagen aims for 55% of U.S. sales to be fully electric by 2030. Source: Volkswagen of America
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Data for Sale cesses, we collect 86% of all quoted collision repairs in North America, whether the quote is taken through a body shop or any insurance carrier.” Even if that quote doesn’t reach an insurer, Schulenburg said he was told, “that data goes into our system within 24 hours.” The 40-plus data fields the company said it has include on a daily basis more than 62,000 VINs and 135,000 quotes---written by shops or insurers. It includes customer name and contact information—address, phone and email—where the
This summer’s Collision Industry Conference (CIC) in Pittsburgh drew hundreds of attendees from around the country
collision occurred and where the repair quote was generated. It includes nearly $72 million of quoted parts per day, and the year, make, model and mileage of vehicles along with body, trim and engine descriptions. The revelation was of interest to a CIC committee that, like SCRS and other organizations, has been looking into how shop estimate information sometimes ends up as entries on vehicle history reports. Schulenburg said the company offering to sell the data was not one he, nor anyone else he has talked to about it, has heard of. “The point here is not that they have this data, but it’s where they are getting it from,” Schulenburg said. The founder of the company, who Schulenburg said he spoke to after the initial call, said a non-disclosure agreement prevented him from revealing the source of the data; he told Schulenburg he couldn’t say more because “if I answer too many questions, you’ll figure it out.” He said it was a company Schulenburg would know because their primary business model “has something to do in collision,” and that licensing the data to be sold is “just a side
stream of revenue.” He confirmed it was not coming from public registries, DMVs or police reports, Schulenburg said. “It is coming from a data aggregator, who is selling it,” Schulenburg said. “There’s a lot of good companies out there that are utilizing data to do the right thing for this industry. And there’s at least one company who is not doing the right thing. There’s at least one company that is turning it into a separate revenue stream to take the information you shared with them for one intended purpose, and selling it to someone else to sell for an entirely different purpose that you didn’t intend.” The leaders of the CIC committee, knowing Schulenburg’s long-standing work on data privacy issues, noted the irony that a data aggregator selling such information would contact him. “It was a complete shock to us that something like that would fall into Aaron’s lap,” said Dan Risley of CCC Intelligent Solutions, cochair of the committee. “I’m glad that it did, though, because I think more discussions will be had.” Risley said it may be a good reminder that vehicle history reporting companies such as CARFAX “shouldn’t be viewed as ‘public enemy No. 1.’” During the committee’s panel discussion following Schulenburg’s presentation, Connecticut attorney Steven Bloch said while issues related to shop estimates resulting in entries on vehicle history reports is troubling, the detailed estimate information being offered for sale poses even greater risks. “What’s of great concern is that a VIN, certainly in combination with personal identifiable information such as Aaron was ticking off—the [customer] name, address, insurance company, plate number—all combines to potentially run afoul of various state and federal [data privacy] legislation, which is only getting stricter, with more scrutiny being paid to everybody in the supply chain,” Bloch said. Panelist Pete Tagliapietra of DataTouch, LLC, agreed. “The information going to the vehicle history companies is the ice above the waterline,” he said. “What’s below the waterline? For you shop owners out there, what’s
18 SEPTEMBER 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com
below the waterline is all of your DRP relationship information: who you have DRP relationships with. What your negotiated labor rate is. Who you buy parts from. What discounts you offer. Anything that can be gleaned off that estimate is being taken, compiled and aggregated, and being used for other purposes.” Though some believe estimate data finds its way to CARFAX or vehicle history reports after the VIN and other information is sent to “live” parts locating services during the estimating process, Tagliapietra blamed thousands of “data pumps” running on shop computer systems, scraping estimate data sometimes without a shop’s knowledge or consent. Virginia shop owner Barry Dorn asked the panel how a shop can know a company that says it is only pulling limited estimate data needed for a specific purpose---like parts locating or customer satisfaction indexing—is actually doing only just that. “You can’t. Not yet. But you will,” said Tagliapietra, whose company is developing a service to root out data pumps on shops’ computers
systems. Panelist Tom Allen of Condition Now said he understands body shops’ frustration with their estimate data resulting in an entry on a given vehicle’s CARFAX or other history report. “The shop becomes the face of this incident,” Allen said. “The officer directing traffic [at the accident scene] may come and go. The insurance company may be just a voice on the other end of the line, or the other side of the app. But the first human we see in this instance is the shop. I believe they get the brunt of things, right or wrong.” Allen said his company for about a decade has offered a way for body shops “to control the negative,” a way to use a vehicle history report to “show the good, not the bad,” by playing up the use of OEM parts in the repair of the vehicle, for example. “Our goal is to actually document that stuff in a way that is helpful to Mrs. Jones, the customer,” Allen said. “To show, not only did we fix your car properly, it was done with OEM certified repair procedures.”
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Continued from Cover
SEMA Show takes place Nov. 1, and will be presented by James Pogue, Ph.D., president and CEO of JP Enterprises. Part of the Business Management Track, each DEI session will feature thought leaders, skill-building seminars, networking, inspiring role models and action-oriented content. “Celebrity Insights,” moderated by African American Racers Association co-founder Chris Harris, features automotive celebrities, legends and luminaries with diverse backgrounds and experiences. The one-hour discussion will give attendees a glimpse into the lives of some of their favorite personalities. “Celebrity Insights” takes place Nov. 4, along with five other sessions that comprise the brand-new Enthusiast Track program. Returning by popular demand is the Leadership Essentials Track, presented by Dale Carnegie. Consisting of six courses spread out over three days, the program can be
taken as a whole or individually. Each course features acclaimed trainers from Dale Carnegie Training. Known for having a leadership, communications and sales program that improves both individual and business performance, Dale Carnegie Training focuses on core human relations principles and is said to transform lives. Also continuing in 2022 are comprehensive programs from partners, including the Society of Collision Repairers (SCRS), the Inter-Industry Conference on Auto Collision Repair (I-CAR) and the Tire Industry Association (TIA). “The SEMA Show has a lot to offer, from seeing new products and vehicle builds, meeting with manufacturers, learning from experts and developing meaningful relationships that you can only get from an in-person event,” said Tom Gattuso, SEMA vice president of events. “We encourage showgoers to take advantage of all the elements of the SEMA Show, so that they get the greatest ROI.” All sessions are held in meeting rooms at the Las Vegas Convention
Tesla Cybertruck Prices, Specs to Change, Probably Be Worth It by Maria Merano, Teslarati
Tesla CEO Elon Musk admitted at the 2022 Annual Meeting of Stockholders that Cybertruck prices will change. However, a lot has changed since the cyberpunk truck’s unveiling. Tesla might make the price change worth it. The all-electric pickup truck was unveiled in 2019, before the pandemic. Prices have gone up across the board, so it wouldn’t be surprising if the price of the Cybertruck went up as well. Tesla has increased the price of its other vehicles as well. “Cybertruck pricing, it was unveiled in 2019, and the reservation was $99,” Musk reminded everyone at the meeting. “A lot has changed since then, so the specs and the pricing will be different. I hate to give sort of a little bit of bad news. But I think there’s no way to sort of anticipate the inflation that we’ve seen and the various issues.” Initially, the Cybertruck was available in three trims with starting prices ranging from $39,900 for
the single-motor RWD version to $69,900 for the tri-motor AWD. Even though Tesla has had a lot on its plate with the pandemic, supply chain issues and inflation, it has continued to refine the Cybertruck’s design since 2019. In June, Musk confirmed Tesla had finalized the design. At the Q4 2021 earnings call, he said Tesla added a lot of new technology to the Cybertruck. Musk hinted that striking a balance between the Cybertruck’s new technology and affordability would decide its final updated price. “I worry more about like how do we the Cybertruck affordable despite having awesome technology. That’s the thing that will really set the rate,” he said in Q4 2021. In June, at the Shareholders Meeting, Musk said Cybertruck production is on track for mid-2023. Musk assured everyone the Cybertruck is still a mind-blowing EV pickup truck. “But what I can say is that the Cybertruck will be one hell of a product. It’s gonna be like a damn fine machine,” he said.
20 SEPTEMBER 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com
Center, making it easy and convenient for attendees to schedule seminars between meetings with exhibitors. Registrants can sign up for the education program while applying for SEMA Show credentials at www.semashow.com/ register. Those who are already approved for credentials can add education sessions by going into their SEMA Show dashboard. Sessions will also be able to be added through the SEMA Show mobile app. This year’s information will be updated in the mobile app in August, but the app can be downloaded now from the app store. The SEMA Show is the world premier automotive trade show, featuring new products and trends in vehicle customization. Complete details about the Nov. 1-4 SEMA Show taking place in Las Vegas, NV, are available at www.semashow. com. Source: SEMA www.autobodynews.com
CREF Raises $100,000 at Golf Fundraiser The Collision Repair Education Foundation’s (CREF) 20th Annual Golf Fundraiser, co-hosted by PPG Automotive Finishes, was a roaring success. Held on July 19 at the Edgewood Country Club in Pittsburgh, PA, the event sold out to capacity with 146 sponsors and industry supports enjoying a day on the green while raising over $100,000 to support collision repair programs, schools and students around the country. The winning team, with a score of just 56, consisted of Rich Finoli, PPG; Steve Morelli, community supporter; Derek Severns, Bowser Automotive; and John Parran, PPG. Participants also had the chance to win great prizes by competing in individual hole contests. Helicopter ball drop winners included Linda Mazur, community supporter; Charlie Jordan, Caliber Collision; and Mary Mahoney, Enterprise Holdings. Source: CREF
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Ohio Groups, Lawmakers Praise CHIPS Act Passed to Boost Intel Investment by J.D. Davidson, The Center Square
The lack of federal subsidies Intel said was holding up its planned $20 billion chip plant in suburban Columbus, OH, cleared the U.S. Senate on July 27. It was signed into lay by President Joe Biden on Aug. 9. The CHIPS Act, which passed the Senate 64-33, will provide $52 billion to U.S. semiconductor manufacturers to help build plants to make microchips. After announcing in January plans to build and create 3,000 jobs at a microchip facility in Ohio, Intel pulled back over the summer, canceling its July 22 groundbreaking while the federal money remained in limbo. “Today’s passage of the CHIPS Act is critical in the effort to bring semiconductor manufacturing back to the United States, protect our national security and create thousands of high-paying jobs in Ohio,” said Sen. Rob Portman, R-OH. “I was proud to help lead efforts in the Senate to pass this legislation and ensure that Intel’s planned semi-
in a CNBC interview that language was inserted into the bill he believes can avoid China concerns. “We did insert some language that I supported on the so-called guardrails to avoid just what you had talked about. I think that’s important. China is very interested, as you know, in investing a lot of money in chips and providing huge incentives, far more than what we are talking about in the CHIPS legislation here, and so are other countries, by the way, South Korea, Japan, Taiwan of course,” Portman said in the interview. Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine said in January an additional An artist rendering of Intel’s planned $20 billion chip 7,000 construction jobs manufacturing plant expected to be built in central could come from the project Ohio. Credit: JobsOhio that is expected to add $2.8 billion to the state’s annual Opponents argued the bill gross project. Ohio committed nearly $2 serves as both $250 billion in taxpayer subsidies to multi-billion- billion in incentives and tax breaks dollar companies and would to Intel. “The best thing this does— subsidize construction of factories with the CHIPS Act—is to make in China. Portman, though, said July 26 sure these jobs are brought home,” conductor plant in central Ohio remains on track and reaches its full potential. Intel’s announced investment is already the largest in Ohio’s history and the company has indicated that with this CHIPS legislation its record investment will grow even larger over time.”
TikTok’s Latest ‘Kia Challenge’ Encourages Users to Steal Cars by Brad Anderson, CarScoops
A viral challenge across TikTok and YouTube has led to a spike in thefts of Kia and Hyundai models throughout the U.S. The “Kia Challenge” shows social media users how to steal certain Kia and Hyundai models by simply removing the plastic cowl under the steering column and using a USB cable. The issue has become particularly prevalent in Milwaukee, WI, where there is a group of young teenagers known as the “Kia Boys” who have become notorious for stealing cars and taking them on dangerous joyrides. It’s not just in Milwaukee where car thefts have surged though. In St. Petersburg, FL, the police department said 23 of the 56 cars stolen on local streets since July 11 have been Kia and Hyundai models model year 2021 and older. Writing on Twitter, authorities encouraged Hyundai and Kia owners to be cautious. “Anyone with a Kia/Hyundai that uses a key, please #lockitup,” it wrote. Speaking with the Tampa Bay Times, police said Kia models
produced from 2011 and 2012 and Hyundai models from 2015 to 2021 have a vulnerability that means the ignition can be easily bypassed. Most of the individuals stealing Kia and Hyundai models are aged between 14 and 17. St. Petersburg Police Department Sgt. Cody Lance said the majority of the cars stolen are unlocked and encouraged owners to always lock their vehicles. He also encouraged the use of steering wheel locks and said parking vulnerable Hyundai and Kia models behind other vehicles can make them more difficult to steal. The trend is spreading across the country. Authorities in St. Paul, MN, have reported a more than 1,300% increase in Kia thefts from last year and an 854% increase in stolen Hyundais. In Grand Rapids, MI, Hyundai and Kia models also made up roughly 45% of the city’s auto thefts in June. Spikes in thefts have also been reported in St. Louis, Memphis, Cincinnati and Columbus. The two car manufacturers said they were aware of the increase in thefts and noted all of their current models are fitted with engine immobilizers.
22 SEPTEMBER 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com
Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, said in a Twitter video statement. Business and manufacturing groups throughout the state praised the Senate passage. “Ohio’s economy stands to benefit even more from the transformational nature of Intel’s investment in semiconductor manufacturing in our state thanks to the CHIPS Act, which will bolster American manufacturing and national security,” said Steve Stivers, president and CEO of the Ohio Chamber of Commerce. The Ohio Manufacturers’ Association called passage and Intel’s planned investment a unique opportunity for the state and country. “Right now, our country has a once-in-a-generation opportunity to strengthen U.S. manufacturing and ensure it consistently competes and wins on the world stage,” said Ryan Augsburger, president of the OMA. “Just as it has since its earliest days, Ohio will play a key role in the next chapter of American innovation. It is time to finally enact this game-changing investment.”
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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.
From the Desk of Mike Anderson with Mike Anderson
Don’t Let Higher Sales Take Your Eye Off the Ball There’s an expression I’ve been thinking about in relation to the collision repair industry: “Pigs get fat and hogs get slaughtered.” As it applies to business, I think it means if you end up being greedy or taking the good times for granted, it’s going to catch up with you. It reminds me of another expression I use a lot: “Lots of sales cover lots of sins.” You can substitute “mistakes” for the word “sins.” I hear from a lot of body shops about how much their sales are up, sometimes to record levels, and I’m concerned a false sense of security can settle in. It can be easy to take your eye off the ball when work is plentiful. Let’s start with the higher sales number. At least some portion of that is likely attributable to more parts per repair order. CCC Intelligent Solutions reported there were
almost 12 parts per claim on average last year, a number that has been climbing since 2011, and especially in more recent years. I’ve seen some other statistics that suggest there’s anywhere between seven and nine more parts per repair now. Add to that the increased price of those parts. Again, CCC data shows parts prices increased 5% in the first quarter of this year alone, after a 7.4% overall increase last year. I’ve seen other statistics showing some parts prices have gone up between 18% and 23%, depending on the type of part. So if there are more parts per repair order, and the prices for those parts have gone up, then of course your sales should be up. But remember, as a repair order includes more parts and less labor, your overall gross profit as a percentage starts to decline.
I’m not saying that’s bad or good. All I’m saying is looking at just your increased sales may be giving you that false sense of security. Remember the start of the pandemic, when work temporarily stopped coming to the door? So many shop owners and managers told me during that time they realized they needed to get back to basics, in terms of making sure SOPs were being followed, focusing on selling and capture rate, and offering great customer service. That’s what I’m suggesting to you here, that your increased sales may have led you to stop keeping your eye on the ball. Maybe your estimate quality isn’t as good as it should be, but the higher parts dollars are masking that. Are you continuing to watch your profit margins on labor, parts, materials, sublet, etc.? Is the backlog of work leading
to any customer service “sins”? It can be easy to get complacent when you know if one customer gets mad at you, you have 20 more lined up at the door. But you still need to care about that customer not going somewhere else. Make sure your customer service isn’t slipping. Maybe your outstanding parts credits are stacking up. Maybe your receivables have started to slip. Maybe you’re not closing out ROs in a timely manner. Are you still watching your efficiencies? There are a lot of things to still make sure you’re keeping an eye on. I’m not an economist. I don’t know what the future holds. But in every recession, I’ve seen shops wish they had stuck to the basics. Take some time right now to make sure lots of sales are not masking a lot of sins in your business, and that you’re not going to suffer the fate of the hogs.
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Tips for Busy Body Shops
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
How to Profit from ADAS Services and Calibration—It’s Not Just About the Targets Industry statistics show nearly 50% ibrate and validate ADAS systems, of the North American car parc will repairs and calibrations. The compabe Advanced Driver Assistance Sys- ny’s Test Drive CoPilot™ platform with Stacey Phillips tems (ADAS)-equipped by 2025. was chosen as one of 15 semifinalist By 2030, the percentage of ADAS- solutions in the 10th annual Specialequipped vehicles will be more than ty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) Annual Launch Pad Com75%. With the overwhelming growth petition. in this area, Frank Terlep, co-founder of Auto Techcelerators, said col- The Facility lision repair facilities are currently For businesses planning to perform with Victoria Antonelli faced with many challenges conduct- 10 or more calibrations or ADAS ing ADAS services and calibrations. repairs per day, Terlep advised faThe first is location. Based on cilities allocate at least 4,000 square industry data, Terlep said 80% of feet. collision repair facilities do not have “If you are going to do calibrathe required space to perform these tions properly, you can’t do them in services. They also need business a parking lot, under a tree or in space with EdaAttanasio operating system, trained person- where there isn’t enough room for nel and equipment, which includes targets to be the proper distance,” he explained. Terlep recommended setting up three work bays and outfitting the facility to ensure all calibration prowith Gary Ledouxcedures are performed indoors without obstructions or uneven surface shadows. Each calibration bay needs a floor space of at least 33 feet wide by 17 feet in length to perform the Frank Terlep said lighting should be diffused calibrations, and the floor should be with minimal shadows level within four 10ths of an inch with Stacey Phillips targeting systems, diagnostic tools, from one side of the workspace to alignment systems, vehicle lifts and the other. more. “A slight incline along the One of the biggest challenges is floor of the space could result in the identifying a vehicle’s ADAS tech- miscalibration of a camera or radar nologies and required calibrations, sensors, thus skewing the vehicles’ which Terlep noted most shops do reactions,” Terlep explained. with Mike Anderson The floor should be painted in a poorly. He shared a February finding neutral tone, be pristinely clean and from Honda that identified 80% of be able to be written on. appraisals processed through CCC He also stressed the importance Intelligent Solutions that needed of having evenly-diffused lighting a calibration did not include a line with minimal shadows. LED bulbs item related to calibration. should be 300-400 lumens that can During a recent webinar spon- be adjusted based on the seasons, sored by Auto Techcelerators, Terlep weather and time. shared some of what he believes are “These are moving variables the requirements to run a properly depending on the shop’s location outfitted ADAS services and cali- and time of year,” said Terlep. Ideally, the facility’s walls bration business. Established in 2019, Auto Tech- should be a matte color. He reccelerators assists the automotive, ommended a solid color coating in collision, glass, insurance and truck beige, grey, light grey or white with industries to properly estimate, cal- no patterns.
“Targets are patterns and you don’t want to confuse the sensors you are calibrating with patterns behind the targets,” explained Terlep. “Ensure there are no reflections or
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Frank Terlep recommends a properly outfitted ADAS services and calibration business facility should ensure all calibration procedures are performed indoors without obstructions or uneven surface shadows. Credit: Courtesy of LaMettrey’s Collision, Glass & More
shadows and there are no reflective surfaces that might interfere with the calibration equipment.”
For owners/operators considering opening a mobile business, Terlep said to consider the skills personnel will offer, the cost of insurance and equipment, space availability, lighting, who will be checking the alignments and how documentation will be collected. Tools One of the essential tools for a calibration center to acquire, according to Terlep, is an OEM and/or aftermarket diagnostic tool and/or software. “You probably need both,” said Terlep. “You need multiple aftermarket tools because they all have limitations.” They also need to be kept up to date. “You aren’t going to do a 2022 calibration with 2021 software,” he See How to Profit from ADAS, Page 30
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autobodynews.com / SEPTEMBER 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS 29
Continued from Page 26
How to Profit from ADAS noted. One of the costliest pieces of equipment required is the targeting system, which is typically rectangular with black and white patterns. “It’s critical to have the right size targets,” said Terlep. “Be prepared to purchase additional targets when new ADAS systems or components are introduced.” ADAS repairs and calibrations also require additional tools such as reflective metal sheets, metal cones, window calibration tools, floor mat calibration targets, doppler simulators, HUD systems and more. Terlep highly recommended having OEM tools on hand for the vehicles the facility typically repairs or subscribing to a remote diagnostic service. He said there are currently five of these types of businesses available today. Not only do remote diagnostic companies perform pre- and post-scanning, but many also offer remote calibration services. In some
cases, Terlep said they provide free targets or a low dollar amount and split the revenue with the facility. He recommended owners/operators compare the remote cost vs. the cost of purchasing OEM software. Another consideration he noted is related to alignments. With 11 auto manufacturers requiring a calibration following a wheel alignment, Terlep said in most cases, a vehicle needs an alignment check before a calibration. “Alignments and calibrations are like peanut butter and jelly sandwiches,” he said. “If the vehicle isn’t aligned correctly, there’s a good chance the ADAS systems aren’t going to work.” As a result, he said facilities must be in the alignment business or have an alignment company nearby. Workflows and Processes Terlep shared what he referred to as the “seven moments of truth” when repairing/calibrating ADASequipped vehicles. They include identifying and locating the technologies and needed calibrations;
communicating with the customer; preparing an accurate repair plan; ordering and scheduling the services; documenting all pre-calibration requirements; documenting calibration actions and results; and performing, managing and documenting the test drive. Organizing Pricing and Getting Paid Although some shops organize pricing by service category, Terlep and his team have found organizing by manufacturer is preferable. He also recommended shops take steps to ensure they have an accurate and detailed billing system. ADAS/Calibration Software For shops planning to enter this side of the business, Terlep said it is critical to have a software platform. However, he believes there isn’t one on the market to meet all of the current needs. “I’ve talked to a lot of businesses and most are using five to seven different systems to manage and operate their companies,” he said. He said the ideal software would help identify and locate
ADAS technologies, calibration triggers and required calibrations, educate customers about what needs to be done with their vehicles, and assist shops to create better, faster and more accurate repair plans. The software would also help the business manage all workflows and processes, generate, share and store detailed documentation, and operate an efficient and profitable business. Because most collision repair facilities don’t have the required space to prefer a calibration, Terlep foresees the industry will operate in a “hub and spoke” model in terms of calibrations, where several stores in a certain area will use a central location for these services. As a result, ADAS/calibration software should ideally include this business model. He noted five of the largest organizations in North America currently manage calibrations in this way. Documentation and Liability Terlep recommended facilities document every aspect of the ADAS service/calibration process as if the shop were going to court tomorrow.
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This includes the vehicle components, calibration triggers and required calibration types, pre- and post-scans, repair order/lines, a health scan and images of a vehicle. It should also include a calibration results report, post-calibration safety system verification test results, a detailed invoice and a workflow report. “How can any organization look at a customer and give them the keys to the vehicle without providing them with validation and documentation that they accurately tested and validated the systems work properly?” said Terlep. He advised shops to remember that ADAS systems directly affect acceleration, braking and steering. “If one is off and doesn’t work, the outcome is not good,” he pointed out. “If an ADAS system fails, who is to blame? The driver, the OEM, the shop or the insurer?” Without documentation, Terlep said, you don’t know. The Investment When determining the investment to begin offering ADAS services/ calibration, Terlep said to consid-
er the cost of the facility, targeting systems, targets, the alignment system, diagnostic tools and business software. While he estimates a minimum investment might be around $150,000, it could easily reach $250,000-$300,000. Return on Investment (ROI) To be successful in the ADAS repair and calibration business, Terlep advised facilities to focus on process and volume. “The key to success is to capture three to 10 customers who repair 100 vehicles a month where you can expect to receive 25-40% of those vehicles,” he said. For shops doing 4,800 calibrations annually, he estimated $773,577 annual gross profit. For more information, visit www.autotechcelerators.com. To watch the webinar, visit https:// www.youtube.com/watch?v=dbf5Css50Hk www.autobodynews.com
Appeals Court Rejects GM’s Attempt to Overturn FCA Racketeering Lawsuit Ruling by Brad Anderson, CarScoops
An appeals court in the U.S. has upheld a 2020 ruling tossing out the racketeering lawsuit that General Motors filed against Fiat Chrysler Automobiles. General Motors filed the racketeering lawsuit against FCA in November 2019. It claimed its rival had bribed United Auto Workers (UAW) union officials to corrupt labor talks to its advantage. GM claimed this cost it billions of dollars.
While GM has long believed it had a strong case, a federal judge in mid-2020 ordered General Motors CEO Mary Barra and Fiat
Chrysler Automobiles CEO Mike Manley to meet and resolve the lawsuit. The judge noted there were more urgent issues facing the U.S. and the lawsuit was a “waste of time and resources.” GM tried multiple times to have the lawsuit reinstated but earlier in August, the three-judge panel of the U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals rejected the attempt, Auto News reported. “Even accepting GM’s theory as true, the chain of causation between FCA’s bribes and GM’s injury is still too attenuated,” the three-judge panel said in its ruling. The lawsuit alleged FCA corrupted the contract bargaining process between GM and the UAW in an attempt to force a merger between the two car manufacturers. The lawsuit claimed late FCA CEO Sergio Marchionne was responsible for conceiving, executing and sponsoring the wrongdoing. FCA had long called the lawsuit “meritless” and said GM’s recently amended complaint was “full of preposterous allegations.”
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How is Your Auto Body Shop Dealing with the Great Resignation? by Ed Attanasio
You thought we would be done with the pandemic by now, but like Al Pacino’s character, Michael Corleone, said in The Godfather II, “Just when I thought I was out, they drag me back in!” Will the effects of the pandemic always be a part of our lives? It sure looks like it. There are still many questions we never had to deal with before, and many things we thought would be in our rearview mirrors by now. Are you prepared for the postCOVID work environment? Are you ready for a majority hybrid-remote office model? Are other shops trying to hire away some of your top people? Will some of your upper management take this opportunity to retire? Is it time to sell? These are life-changing decisions and the time to make them is here. We’re now entering the post-pandemic world and many of your employees have different opinions. While some of your crew is enthusiastically returning to work, others are reluctant and have concerns about hours, safety and other issues. Regardless of whatever your employees think will happen next, body shop owners and managers are just happy to return to some level of normalcy after these 30 months. But, are things really back to normal—and what is normal now, anyway? In many parts of the country, the shortage of qualified people got even worse during the pandemic. An MSO owner told me recently he could put 80 collision professionals to work immediately, if they existed. I would bet any shop out there right now could use a few more qualified people, as car counts rise and customers who were reluctant to bring their vehicles for repairs start showing up at their doors. Poaching employees is a problem, especially in states like California and New York, and it will undoubtedly get worse within the next year or so, I believe. So, with motivating your crew and strengthening them more important than ever, here are some methods to help you retain
your best employees. The pandemic caused body shop owners and managers to centralize decision-making to be more efficient, pulling it into the leadership team without feedback from key stakeholders, like top technicians or the head painter. This was essential during the pandemic, but this will need to change to ensure long-term effectiveness and continued employee engagement. One of the smartest ways to do this is to start inviting employees outside the leadership team and closer to the rest of the crew to participate in the decision-making process. Some body shop owners said communication improved tremendously during the pandemic because it became mandatory. “People were no longer in the same room, so imparting communication changed,” one owner said. “We became a Zoom culture, and in many cases, we became more comfortable with it and adapted.” The pandemic created a virtual world, but unfortunately it won’t have much of an impact down the road in collision repair, because you can’t fix cars via Zoom. It means some employees who were sitting home for more than a year are going to undergo major changes, like commuting and spending less time with their families. Some people won’t adapt well and it may take a month or two to re-engage, so patience but accountability should play a role. During the pandemic, many shop owners and managers decided to push employee communication to the sidelines. The idea was they should not focus on engagement, saying “We can’t ask our managers, techs, estimators and painters to do one more thing!” Stressed out employees were on their own and forced to navigate it all solo. Some quit and many were laid off, and even a few took early retirement or sold their shops to an MSO. So now is the ideal time to reconnect with your top talent if you want to retain them. Post-COVID, your disengaged employees will start looking for a better deal elsewhere. Will the return to normal
32 SEPTEMBER 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com
tempt your best people to pursue other options? The best thing to do is to step up employee engagement and keep everyone in the fold. Turnover can seriously impede a body shop, and poaching can spread quickly. Joe Technician is happy at his new shop and the word is out they’re looking for more people, so a strong bond with your employees is more important now than ever. Focus on retaining your female employees, because they are the most likely to switch or quit altogether. According to NPR, 865,000 women left the U.S. workforce— four times more than men—in just September last year. “The coronavirus pandemic is wreaking havoc on households, and women are bearing the brunt of it,” the NPR study said. “Not only have they lost the most jobs from the beginning of the pandemic, but they are exhausted from the demands of childcare and housework—and many are now seeing no path ahead but to quit working.
Keep Millennials in your discussions. They’re focused on things such as diversity and inclusion, so keep them in the loop. The worst thing is to have them feeling like they’re not being heard. Let them play a role and watch them excel as people and leaders. To accommodate your younger crew members, keep your meetings short and sweet and create mechanisms to enable them to contribute. It’s a whole new game out there and those shops that can adapt will succeed, while others might encounter a never-ending carousel of new and returning employees. The pandemic changed the rules, but many principles of employee communication are still the same. Try to keep stress levels low, keep your eyes open for changes within your team and proceed carefully, and you will be able to retain your people and avoid the pitfalls of the Great Resignation. www.autobodynews.com
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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.
Gerber Collision CEO Talks Parts, Personnel Challenges
Tim O’Day, president and CEO of ance partners, and in how it drives Boyd Group Services, parent com- our profitability, to identify and pany of Gerber Collision & Glass, source higher-margin, lower-cost alwith Ed Attanasio referred to his company as “one of ternative parts.” the better users of alternative parts” O’Day said the company is in a presentation this spring at the working toward centralized parts orAutomotive Body Parts Association dering for its more than 800 shops in annual convention. North America. “When we leave the buying de“But right now, we’re more reliant on OEM parts than we’ve ever cision at a local level, there’s somewith Ed Attanasio been, which is unfortunate,” O’Day times influences that aren’t consistold the non-OEM parts manufactur- tent with what our objectives are,” ers and distributors at the event. “It O’Day said. “It could be something negatively impacts our profitability, as simple in the old days as ‘I got tickets to the ballgame tonight, so I’m going to buy parts from this supwith Ed Attanasio plier,’ to something worse than that, that may not be good for our business. The direction we’re moving is to establish contractual relationships in writing with a supplier.” Part of that agreement will be all electronic parts ordering. and it drives repair costs up for our with Ed Attanasio “We’re going to get to the customers. So hopefully the aftermarket will figure out how to bal- point where if you do business with ance out supply so that we can buy us, and one of our stores calls you the parts from you that we want to and says, ‘Deliver me this part, I buy.” need it this afternoon,’ if you don’t O’Day acknowledged that cur- get the order electronically, I don’t rently even OEM partsStacey are often Phillips un- want you to deliver it,” O’Day said. with available, and he doesn’t foresee a “Because what’s going to happen is quick end to supply chain issues. you’re going to deliver the part. I’m “Last year, we probably thought going to put it on the car, and I’m maybe the beginning of the second never going to charge my customer quarter of this year, but I haven’t for it. And 60 days from now, you’re going to come back to me and say, seen it,” he said. “I’veStacey heard temwith Phillips porary positive signs, but nothing ‘You owe me for that part, because that’s systematic that’s going to you didn’t get it in your payables drive the change we need. So I think system and you haven’t paid for it we’re probably in for a couple of yet.’ “So it’s a huge loss for me when years of challenging times.” When asked to compare suppli- we do that. So we want to do busiwith Stacey Phillips er service levels, O’Day said “prob- ness with suppliers that are connectlems with parts that come in incor- ed electronically,” with ordering, rectly is much, much lower with invoicing and payment all handled OEM than it is with the aftermarket. electronically. “I think if you talk to a parts O’Day also discussed the techmanager or estimator at one of our nician shortage impacting all collistores, if pricewith and margin sion repair businesses. He serves on Staceywere Phillips equal, they would buy the OE part the Board of Directors for I-CAR, because it tends to be reliable a high and said the segment of the industry percentage of the time,” O’Day said. renewing its I-CAR Gold Class desBut he noted the gross profit margin ignation in 2019 averaged 9.5 techon non-OEM parts is better, so “our nicians per shop. staff is motivated both in terms of “In the most recent round of how we get measured by our insur- renewals, the average shop has 7.5
Social Media for Shops
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technicians,” O’Day said. “So about a 17 or 18% reduction in workforce. It’s just a highly disruptive environment. And there’s really no shortterm solution. “My view, and most of the repairers I’ve spoken to share it, is the only way we’re going to build our workforce is by paying more money to that workforce, pulling them from other industries,” O’Day said. “The only way we can do that is through pricing. It’s going to cause increased premiums for vehicle owners. But otherwise we’re not going to solve our customers’ problem and get their cars repaired on a timely basis.” He said the industry lacks “a formal, universal way” to work with students coming out of collision repair training programs to build their skills. “They come into our industry, and because we don’t train them
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properly to move them to the next level, we lose them to other industries,” he said. To that end, he said, Gerber created an 18-month technician apprenticeship program for students coming out of school or for internal candidates working as a porter or car-washer. “We spend tens of thousands of dollars per trainee, but they come out with pretty good skills after 18 months,” O’Day said. “We’ve made a commitment to more than double the size of that program this year. But I think in the long run, we can’t do it alone. We really need the majority of collision repair shops to make the same type of commitment, and do it in an organized way so these students grow and are successful in our industry.” Another “area of opportunity” See Gerber Collision CEO, Page 40
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Guest Columnist with Cole Strandberg
Cole Strandberg is a principal with FOCUS Investment Banking, specializing in automotive aftermarket mergers and acquisitions. Cole works closely with automotive equipment providers, paint jobbers and collision centers. For more information, contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org or (561) 400-1015
Build Your Collision Repair Business with a Buyer in Mind Most entrepreneurs start a business based on one or two of many potential reasons—it could be to exploit a unique skillset or access to talent, pursue a passion or simply meet a need otherwise not being met in the marketplace. Most times, though, new entrepreneurs start businesses with the beginning in mind, but not the end, building a business that meets their immediate personal needs without giving much thought to the long term. As a result, many business owners fall into the trap of limiting their business’s growth, and subsequent options for the long term, based on short-term-minded decisions. By contrast, many of the most successful people in the collision repair space have started their businesses with one goal in mind: to sell it. How can you build your business by thinking like a seller? First, let’s discuss what buyers are looking for, and work our way backward. What do buyers want? Footprint and layout: As you might expect, the more space you have, the better. While each potential consolidator’s footprint desires vary, a safe sweet spot is 10,000 square feet of shop space or larger, though not a hard and fast requirement. Additionally, parking and storage is equally important. If you fall short of that square footage, don’t fret. Maximize the space you have. Maximizing shop space via a well-thought-out equipment layout and shop flow allows for more revenue per square foot. If you’re just building a new location, or considering upfitting an existing location, reach out to one of the quality paint booth manufacturers, most of whom will offer a no-charge design consultation. Revenue: You want to maximize your space because consolidators care about revenue, plain and simple. While most businesses I work with are valued based on a multiple of adjusted EBITDA, or earnings before interest, taxes, de-
preciation and amortization, the collision repair industry places significant importance on revenue as well. This is because, for the most part, if a consolidator can generate a certain amount of revenue within a footprint, they believe they can make that revenue profitable. Again, while there is no hard and fast rule on revenue requirements for consolidators, $2 million in annual revenue seems to be an entry point, with $5 million being a common sweet spot. Anything over that, and you should have some compelling regional and national interest when you eventually go to market. It’s important to note purchase price as a percentage of revenue typically goes up as revenue goes up, just as EBITDA multiples increase when EBITDA increases. Obviously, becoming a small multi-shop owner with two, three or more shops can help that revenue scale more quickly, and make you even more desirable to a potential acquirer. Valuation multiples vary significantly based on a multitude of factors, so if you’d like to discuss situation-specific valuations, feel free to reach out to me directly. Community and relationships: While there is no quantifiable value placed on your shop being a pillar within its community, it certainly doesn’t hurt. Many consolidators are very charitable, so a culture of giving in your shop will make it more attractive. Not to mention, local relationships with the customer base, direct repair programs (DRPs) and dealers will only serve to add value to your business. It never hurts to do good things within your community. Talent: As you likely know firsthand, there’s a theme in the collision industry as it relates to constant challenges: talent—much less good talent—is hard to come by. This is evidenced by some of the largest consolidators in the country investing millions in training programs, incentivizing—aggressively, I might add—experienced techni-
36 SEPTEMBER 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com
cians to train apprentices, and more. This industry puts a premium on talent. Therefore, if you have a lot of talent within your organization, it will help your business get a premium valuation. Validate this by having I-CAR certifications, both at the shop and technician level, as well as original equipment manufacturer (OEM) certifications. So how do you build like a seller? In terms of working your way backward, determine what you want your eventual exit value to be. Once that’s determined, you’ll know what you must do in order to get there. The focus, ultimately, is on scalability and avoiding roadblocks to achieving that scale, such as limited space and poor shop flow. While you might not be a seller today, tomorrow or even five years from now, everyone is in business to make money. Modeling your busi-
ness after some of the best operations in the industry is a good thing. Chances are, building your business by regularly taking a step back and looking at it through the lens of a potential buyer will pay off in both the short and long term. Cole Strandberg is a principal with FOCUS Investment Banking, specializing in automotive aftermarket mergers and acquisitions. Cole works closely with automotive equipment providers, paint jobbers and collision centers. For more information, contact him at cole. email@example.com or (561) 400-1015.
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OEM Roundtable Working to Improve Quality of Collision Repair by Stacey Phillips
Twenty-five years ago, many auto manufacturers found they were experiencing similar non-competitive issues in the industry. George Gilbert from Ford and Rick Sherwood from Campbell & Co. suggested meeting to discuss these issues. The following year, six exploratory meetings were held with numerous OEMs to find out if it would be helpful to form a more formal group and convene regularly. In 1999, the OEM Roundtable was formed. Since then, the group has held quarterly meetings alongside the Collision Industry Conference (CIC). During the April 2022 CIC meeting in Oklahoma City, OK, representatives from the OEM Roundtable shared some of the history and guiding principles of the group. They included Mark Allen, collision programs and workshop equipment specialist at Audi of America; Dan Ducharme, wholesale parts senior manager for Volkswagen of America; and Devin Wilcox, collision certification manager at Subaru of America. Currently, 13 major member companies are involved in the OEM Roundtable, including Ford, GM, Honda, Hyundai, Kia, Mazda, Mercedes-Benz, Nissan, Stellantis, Subaru, Toyota, Volkswagen and Volvo. Many of the representatives are active participants in industry organizations and committees as well as events and panel discussions. Ducharme is the 2022 president of the OEM Roundtable. Prior leaders include: • 2013–2014: Paul Massie, Ford • 2015–2016: Gary Ledoux, Honda • 2017–2019: John Eck, General Motors • 2020–2021: Rossana Alvarez, Honda • 2021: Mark Zoba, Nissan
oped by some auto manufacturers, bringing awareness to the technician shortage, addressing challenges faced by repairers and parts sellers,
as well as researching new industry programs and technologies. In addition, the group discusses industry programs and legislative and legal updates. Allen said the OEM Roundtable operates under
strict anti-trust guidelines. “We want to help the participants in our programs do better,” said Allen. “By offering support, we
hope to build better success quicker for shops.” Wilcox said some of the guest presenters at the quarterly meetings may include information providers, industry associations, training or-
ganizations, service and equipment providers, MSOs, dealers and shop owners, and insurers. “We’re always open-minded to meeting and discussing what programs and offerings could be beneficial to us as a network and an industry,” he said. The group adheres to three guiding principles: * The interests of all parties involved in the collision repair process are best protected when vehicle owners are allowed to make informed decisions regarding collision repairs to their vehicles. * Active participation by all parties in the collision repair process is necessary if the quality of collision repair available to vehicle owners is to continuously improve. * Open discussion among those involved in the collision repair process and reliable sources of collision repair data are paramount if the quality of collision repair is to continuously improve.
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The group’s mission is to continuously improve the quality of collision repair available to vehicle owners. Allen talked about some of the OEM Roundtable’s frequent topics of discussion, which have included improving access to and use of repair procedures independently devel38 SEPTEMBER 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com
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To support these principles, Allen said OEMs constantly enhance the availability and functionality of repair information developed by each of them. “The information is there to document the file and repair the car the right way,” he said. “Some of us include what the equipment is that the repair procedures were developed with to get the achievable outcome of repairing the car.” The OEM Roundtable and its member companies are involved in the industry in many ways. This includes financial support and engagement with numerous organizations, such as the Automotive Service Association (ASA), Collision Industry Conference (CIC), Collision Industry Electronic Commerce Association (CIECA), Collision Industry Conference (CIF), Collision Repair Education Foundation (CREF), Inter-Industry Conference on Auto Collision Repair (I-CAR), National Auto Body Council (NABC), Society of Collision Repair Specialists (SCRS) and Women’s Industry Network (WIN). “We want to be available for the
industry at these conferences and be accessible,” said Wilcox. In 2008, the roundtable launched the www.OEM1Stop.com website to respond to the industry’s request for easier access to OEM repair procedures and information. Auto manufacturer position statements were added in 2016. By 2021, there were more than 300,000 total visits to the website and more than 120,000 unique visitors that year alone. “The number of visits has jumped over 300% since 2016,” said Wilcox. “Many body shops are referencing the site now on a regular basis.” Another resource available is www.CrashRepairInfo.com, launched in 2014. This website provides direct outreach to customers and guides vehicle owners through the collision repair process with a focus on proper repairs. Ducharme explained individual OEMs work internally with their engineers to determine what needs to be done pre- and post-collision to streamline repair procedures. At the same time, the group is increasing
engagement with body shops and insurance partners. “We want to make sure everyone has the knowledge and the ability to keep up with all the latest advanced technologies that, as manufacturers, we’re putting into these vehicles,” said Ducharme. “We’re trying to get feedback from all segments so we can make informed decisions and provide a great experience to our mutual customers.” Looking ahead, the OEM Roundtable hopes to help the industry move forward by increasing collaboration and transparency among all industry segments, providing greater use of tools and continuing to learn from all stakeholders. “As OEMs, we are here to support the industry and make sure vehicles are being taken care of and repaired properly,” said Wilcox. “We’re always looking to make it better,” said Allen. “Let’s become professional and agree that we are going to take a look at these repair procedures, have the conversations with customers and insurance partners, and get the car repaired the right way.”
Rivian Amazon Vans Delivered 430K-Plus Packages During Pilot Program by Maria Merano, Teslarati
Rivian reported delivering more than 430,000 Amazon packages with its Electric Delivery Van (EDV) during the vehicles’ pilot deployments, which rolled out in July. In July, Amazon announced Rivian EDVs would be deployed in locations across the U.S., including Baltimore, Chicago, Dallas, Kansas City, Nashville, Phoenix, San Diego, Seattle and St. Louis. Rivian and Amazon worked closely together to design the EDV vehicle. “A close development partnership with Amazon and its delivery drivers enabled us to optimize the EDV features and design for last mile delivery,” Rivian said in its Q2 Shareholders Letter. “This process included delivering more than 430,000 packages through multiple pilot deployments that began in early 2021—these pilots enabled a rapid refinement of a range of features.” Rivian explained each EDV feature, providing a reason behind each design decision. For instance, the EV automaker equipped the electric delivery van with rear roll-up doors
so it would be easier to load bulky warehouse items. Rivian’s Amazon Delivery Van also has a tall roof, so drivers can easily walk through it. Plus, Amazon EDV vehicles work with Rivian’s fleet management system, called FleetOS. The EV automaker also highlighted how closely Rivian engineers worked with Amazon employees to optimize EDV features. “To ensure optimal temperature, Rivian engineers spent time in the vans during delivery routes, which helped the development of an HVAC system optimized for driver comfort and efficiency,” noted Rivian. One Amazon delivery driver already provided his first impression of Rivian’s EDV via his YouTube channel, Friday Adventure Club. He was impressed with the EDV and listed its advantages over ICE delivery vehicles. Amazon deployed Rivian EDV 700s in July. Rivian has two other variants for its electric delivery van: the EDV 500 and the EDV 900. The EV automaker announced it started production validation for the EDV 500 in Q2 2022.
40 SEPTEMBER 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com
Continued from Page 34
Gerber Collision CEO he said Gerber is “pursuing pretty aggressively” is improving the “diversity of our industry,” working to attract more women, Black or Asian Americans and other minority groups. “We’re doing a lot to create an inclusive environment that will allow us to successfully recruit people who don’t look like me, and build our workforce with greater diversity,” O’Day said. “Because if we go after the same group that we’ve always been targeting, we’re never going to solve the problem, and we’re not going to be as good of a company. So we have a very strong commitment to improving diversity.”
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Repairify’s New Partnership with ATG Will Provide Industry with Advanced Diagnostic Training by Stacey Phillips
With the growing need for collision repair technicians to understand the mechanical components of vehicles, Repairify is taking steps to equip them with the skills they need to repair vehicles properly. In July, Repairify announced it acquired the Automotive Training Group (ATG) to create and offer advanced diagnostic training for the industry focused on both mechanical and collision repair. “Their content and workbooks are the best in the industry,” said Chris Chesney, Repairify’s vice president of training and organizational development. “I’m really looking forward to bringing them on board and integrating them into what we do.” Founded in 2004, ATG offers live and virtual technical training worldwide. Chesney has a long history of working with the ATG team over his career and has great respect for the company and team of instructors for presenting excellent in-
formation in an understandable and interesting format. As a result of their new partnership, Repairify will support ATG in such a way that they can produce and deliver meaningful content to a wider audience. This includes offering classes that focus on scanning and calibration, Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) and electric vehicles, as well as vehicle data networks. “Part of that network might have been damaged or had corrosion or resistance in connectors or whatever that are not a part of the of the collision but affect the overall results or capabilities of that one network,” said Chesney. “It’s important for [technicans] to know how to triage those and validate that they’re actually working as designed.” Working in this field for the majority of his career, Chesney understands the importance of connecting with technicians so they have a full picture of what needs to be done to be successful on the shop floor. He has worked as a shop owner, service
advisor, trainer, training manager and training program owner. All these roles have focused on the mechanical side of the business. In 2002, Chesney moved to Raleigh, NC, to build out an automotive training team. When he left that organization in 2021, it was hosting 150,000 active learners who were taking self-paced online courses or participating in the 3,000 to 4,000 in-person or live virtual classroom events held each year. About three months after Chesney’s retirement, Cris Hollingsworth, president of Repairify, asked him to join the company in 2021 to head up its training arm. Most of Repairify’s training is currently targeted to internal trainers and technicians and is offered both virtually and in-person. The company also offers product-oriented training to customers in a virtual setting. “Up until now, the primary focus has been to rightsize and enable the internal training team so that our own people can be best prepared to
serve our customers in their remote services that that we have made tremendous headway with,” he explained. Future training will be presented in what Chesney refers to as an adaptive learning model in which online course materials are customized to the learner for an experience not available in a traditional classroom setting. “Imagine the instructor of a virtual classroom knowing the skills gap of every student on the call,” said Chesney. This will allow instructors to better focus content during the lessons and interact with students. He said Repairify will be working with I-CAR to align ATG content with I-CAR standards to count toward accreditation. Training will be developed with a diagnostic approach, combining OEM support information with real-world technician experience using actual case studies where possible. See Repairify’s New Partnership, Page 53
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Forward-Thinking Program Creating Great Auto Body Techs of the Future by Ed Attanasio
In the summer of 2019, Southeastern Community College (SCC) in West Burlington, IA, hired Dr. Ashlee Spannagel as its new dean of career and technical education (CTE) and workforce development. Spannagel entered the job excited and ready to take on the world— and then the pandemic hit. It’s been a “work around” project ever since, but she hasn’t been dissuaded one iota, taking the position and making it her own as the school’s collision repair department benefits in many ways. Spannagel came to SCC after working in education for nine years. One of the first things she did was to
collision repair department. Can you tell us about that?
We receive an annual allocation of funding that is called ACE (Accelerated Career Education) funding. The whole purpose of that money is to reinvest in infrastructure, so that we can provide more classes and accommodate more students. One of the things that we chose to do with the money was to remodel our auto collision facilities, and it has worked out very well. We are confident that this will lead to more enrollment down the road, which is obviously the goal. It shows that we are open and committed to collision repair and ready to pivot if needed.
It’s a huge job and a big school, so how are you able to do it all?
Dr. Ashlee Spannagel is the dean of career and technical education (CTE) and workforce development at Southeastern Community College in West Burlington, IA
build relationships with established area educators, industry leaders and workforce and economic development partners to continue building opportunities for students. This included local body shops, car dealerships, vendors and companies that manufacture collision repair-related products, tools and equipment. Spannagel stays busy as she oversees the school’s entire CTE division and works closely with faculty and area employers to ensure SCC provides top-notch, industry-level education to its students. Her role within SCC’s auto and collision repair programs is only one small part of everything she does at this forward-thinking institution.
While other CTE programs in the country have stepped back during the pandemic, you have stepped up in many ways for your
Yes, I am responsible for 47 certificate, diploma and degree programs, and collision is just one them. I’ve been involved in technical education and post-secondary education 13 years now. The technology in the collision repair industry changes so rapidly that we can’t possibly keep up with the changes that are occurring. We need to do our best to keep pace with what’s going on, and then bring in other learning opportunities to help students to be up to date. We have been working very hard to align with industry-recognized credentials and what our local shops need in our graduates, so we rewrote the curriculum and pursued ASE accred-
program with far more credentials than they would have been qualified to earn previously.
How can you stay current in an industry that is changing at a rapid rate?
my team who are eligible for retirement in the next five years. There is a lot of talent, knowledge and experience that is highly skilled and invaluable to our programs. So, in the next five years, we’ll have to figure
I personally think our collision instructors are excited that the students are highly interested about technology. Our students have grown up with technology. They are technology natives. So anytime we can include those hightech pieces—either tools, equipment or concepts that the students are likely to engage with—that is ideal. We want to enable the body technician of tomorrow to be adept at using technology and that’s one of our main goals here at SCC.
How do you find, hire and maybe most importantly retain good instructors?
My biggest concern now is that we have a lot of staff on
The college’s goal is to enable and empower the body techs and painters of the next 30plus years
out how to replace it. I think the way that we’ve handled the pandemic and our instructional continuity has really helped us retain our staff. But now I’m growing concerned about the fact that they’ll be retiring here shortly.
How has establishing mutually beneficial partnerships with local shops and vendors helped See Techs of the Future, Page 48
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Mike’s Auto Body Gave Away 100 Cars in 21 Years, Changing Countless Lives by Ed Attanasio
When Crash Champions announced it was acquiring Mike’s Auto Body (MAB) in June, many people throughout the Bay Area thought about MAB’s nationally acclaimed Benevolence Program. It became part of the brand at Mike’s Auto Body as the company and its owners, the Rose family, gave away exactly 100 vehicles to deserving families, individuals and nonprofit organizations over the past 21 years. The goal has always been to give people a hand up as opposed to a handout with the gift of transportation, and the MSO achieved that mission with every vehicle it presented to a deserving recipient. In 2001, Mike’s Auto Body began giving refurbished cars to people in need. The very first recipient was a single mom with two children. Reporter Wayne Freedman from Channel 7 ABC News reported on the presentation and broadcast the story on the evening news. It quickly became an annual tradition, as Freedman and his news team reported on every presentation throughout the years during the holiday season, along with more and more media that flocked to the feel good story. Over the years, Mike’s Auto Body got more people involved in its Benevolence Program, including vendors, technicians, car rental companies and insurance partners. The vendors donated products and their services, the technicians at Mike’s Auto Body donated their time and skills, and the insurance and car rental companies donated the vehicles. The vehicles donated were considered totaled, but by refurbishing them and returning them to their pre-accident condition, they looked brand new. Mike’s Auto Body made its first presentations from 2001 through 2006 at its Concord, CA, location, with a one-year exception in Brentwood, CA. Since then, it has held car presentations at some of its shops in the East Bay, as well as at other locations, including in conjunction with the U.S Coast Guard’s CPOA in Alameda, CA, on the pier in front
of the USS Hornet Museum. The Benevolence Program director at Mike’s Auto Body is Sal Contreras, who has been involved with every car presentation since the program’s inception and is considered the Benevolence Ambassador. “We always say that at Mike’s, we are providing ‘a gift of charity wrapped in dignity,’” Contreras said. “These deserving people are
Over the years, Mike’s Auto Body got more and more people involved in its Benevolence Program, including vendors, technicians and insurance partners. Sal Contreras, Benevolence Ambassador, is pictured far right
working towards making a better life for their families; all they need is reliable transportation to make it happen. “Early on, Mike [Rose] said he wished he could give 100 cars to families; well, we achieved Mike’s dream in December of 2021,” Contreras said. “We presented the 100th car to a single mom who had been struggling to raise her family without a car. The Benevolence Program came full circle, as our first recipient was a single mom raising her family.” The Rose family made the Benevolence Program part of their lives, and it was quickly ingrained into their DNA. “We feel very fortunate to be involved with such a wonderful program and are very excited to be able to give back to the area communities that have supported us for the past 50 years,” owner Mike Rose said. “After receiving hundreds of applications over the years and reading the heartbreaking stories, we only wish that we could do more. But hopefully, with increased publicity of our Benevolence Program, other shops will adopt a similar program of their own.” “As a family-founded company, we have always prioritized philan-
46 SEPTEMBER 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com
thropic initiatives, in particular those that most impact our neighbors and the community organizations they rely on,” said Brennan Rose, CEO of Mike’s Auto Body. “To this end, we could not be prouder to celebrate our 100th vehicle donation as part of our Benevolence Program. For more than two decades, this program has been a staple of our charitable giving, and as we transition under the Crash Champions name and banner, we look forward to finding new and creative ways to give back to the communities where we operate.” CFO Ragen Ortland-Rose was a major force behind MAB’s Benevolence Program. “We never imagined that the program would grow as it did,” she said. “Our people and the community rallied around it, as the power of giving grew exponentially. We’ve always stressed quality in everything we do, and the program illustrates that. We enabled so many worthy people to improve their lives, and that’s why it gained so much momentum.
“Other body shops reached out to us and started their own programs, so the giving spread, and today our program will live through other shops all over the country,” Ortland-Rose continued. “We know that Crash Champions will continue our legacy in some form because they share our passion for helping others. My father and my mother stressed that this is important, and that’s why we did it every year for 21 years. “When we gave away our 100th vehicle, we did not realize that it would be the last within our program, but now it is fitting and a number that all of us can easily remember!” Ortland-Rose concluded. “Thanks to everyone involved, including employees, insurance partners, vendors and the nonprofit organizations that helped us find worthy recipients over the years.”
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Technician/Painter Recovering from Severe Burns Recognized During 11th Annual CIF Gala by Stacey Phillips
Members of the collision industry gathered at the 11th Annual Collision Industry Foundation (CIF) Gala in Pittsburgh, PA, on July 20 to show their support for Bryan Miller, an Ohio-based technician and painter recovering from severe burns he suffered from an in-shop fire in September 2021. The fundraising event, held at the Howl at the Moon restaurant, was the first time CIF has hosted its annual gala since the pandemic. The nonprofit organization is committed to assisting those working in the collision repair industry through crises and tragedies. “I’m happy to report we had record attendance,” said Petra Schroeder, “Collisionista” and secretary of CIF. “About 163 individuals from all segments of the industry were present, of which 41.7% were firsttime attendees.” Earlier in the year, CIF put out a call to the industry at large for the first time looking for volunteers interested in joining the organization’s committees. The following individuals became part of the gala volunteer committee: Tracy Darrington, Enterprise; Matt HamerContinued from Page 44
Techs of the Future your collision repair department?
Within the past 18 months, we have been working on bolstering the relationships we have with our local body shops. We have a lot of body shops in our service area that are actually owned and operated by former students of the program. We also have a couple dealership repair centers in our area, and we have been able to partner with them as well. I realized we had an opportunity to strengthen our program when six local businesses approached me questioning the skills they were seeing in our students who had entered the workforce. So, I personally built relationships with these companies,
ling, Enterprise; Paul Hill, I-CAR; Tom Julius, Car-Part.com; Stacey LaViola; Cherlyn Schultz, Enterprise; Scott Stiber, Enterprise; Ann Swayka, AirPro Diagnostics; and John Webb, TenPointComplete. “I want to give a big shout-out to those gala committee volunteers,” said Schroeder. “What they did to
CIF Trustee Jim Ocampo presented Bryan Miller with a $15,000 check. Pictured, left to right, are CIF President Michael Quinn, of AirPro Diagnostics; Jim Ocampo, Axalta; Bryan Miller and Kassi Nellett
help us was incredibly valuable and their support was outstanding.” Schroeder said the assistance from the volunteers was instrumental in preparing the gala to help Miller and raise money for others in the industry who might need assistance in the future. “The event provided the opportunity to bring industry individuals and their managers have partnered with us in the work we have done to strengthen our program. We have worked to bolster our relationships with local body shops. The shops have been very receptive, very helpful and very engaged. We also work with vendors like PPG that come and do special paint classes for our students. This is just one great example of the learning opportunities we provide our students. In addition, we did just receive ASE accreditation that we have been working on for the past 18 months.
together as well as the opportunity for additional fundraising through event ticket sales, raffles and silent auctions,” said CIF President Michael Quinn, president of AirPro Diagnostics. “At the gala, we were able to bring one of our most recent recipients of CIF support, Bryan Miller, to meet with and thank in person many individuals from organizations who provided direct support to him.” During the event, CIF Trustee Jim Ocampo, strategic accounts sales manager at Axalta Coating Systems, presented Miller with a $15,000 check. Approximately 40% of the amount was donated by the industry to a campaign specifically to help Miller, and CIF contributed the remainder. Miller began working in the auto industry in 2016 and has spent time since then as a collision technician/painter. Last September, he was working on a motorcycle at the shop he was employed at, and a fire broke out. When Miller’s body caught on fire, he was trapped in his work area
For more information about CIF, visit www.collisionindustryfoundation .org.
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before escaping out of a window. He was transported to a hospital by helicopter. Although he survived, Miller had third-degree burns covering most of his body and multiple surgeries and skin grafts. He said he lives in constant pain and expects it will take at least a year to regain full mobility. Miller, his fiancé, Kassi Nellett, and his cousin, Steve Legg, attended the gala to show their appreciation for the assistance provided by CIF and the industry to help him recover from his injuries and get back to work. “I want to go back to work right now! It’s my passion; I feel blessed to have found a career that’s given me a sense of pride to be able to tell people what I do for a living. I just love everything about my job,” said Miller in an article written by Joel Gausten.
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CIECA Forms AI Committee
Collision Repair Association Conducting Study of Blend Time Formula by John Yoswick
The Society of Collision Repair Specialists (SCRS) has provided a few more details about its study beginning in August into the accuracy of the blend time formula commonly used in the industry.
Aaron Schulenburg of the Society of Collision Repair Specialists said shops have long challenged the accuracy of the estimating systems’ blending formula
Speaking at the association’s open board meeting in late July in Pittsburgh, Executive Director Aaron Schulenburg noted the three estimating system providers each
establish its own refinish labor allowance for any given panel. “The refinish time for a fender in Audatex will look different than the refinish time for that fender in CCC, which will look different from the refinish time in Mitchell,” Schulenburg said. “Which is fine, they’ve each done their own research on it. All three companies identify 50% as a blend value; despite the fact that they don’t have the same refinish values, all identify blend time as 50%. “Our members have long challenged that,” Schulenburg said. “We don’t believe 50% is reflective of what we’re actually doing, because there are a lot of tasks associated with [blending] outside of just the application of the base coat, which, for a large part, is the task that is being adjusted.” Schulenburg said given the lack of “positive movement” SCRS has seen on the issue based on its long-standing discussion with the estimating system providers, the association is working with the five primary refinish companies on a study taking place at Global Finish-
ing Solutions’ Center of Excellence facility in Wisconsin. “We will actually be using a systematic approach where we do complete refinish on doors, fenders and hoods, and then blend on doors, fenders and hoods, to evaluate the delta between the full refinish task and the blend tasks,” Schulenburg said. “We’re not doing a refinish time study. Our goal is not to establish a refinish time on those panels. We will just be evaluating what percentage of the full refinish value blend represents.” He said the study will use panels for a high-volume Ford truck, waterborne products used in all U.S. markets, and color codes that represent a solid, a metallic and a tri-coat. “This has been an issue for a long time,” Schulenburg said. “We hope to put a punctuation mark on this one.”
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AirPro Diagnostics, CCC Partner CCC Intelligent Solutions on Aug. 2 announced AirPro Diagnostics will become the newest member of the CCC® Diagnostics network. Through an integration with AirPro, collision repair users of CCC Diagnostics will soon be able to capture and document AirPro scan and calibration information in their CCC ONE® workfiles. The streamlined service with AirPro is expected to be available via CCC ONE in September. The integration does not require a physical connection between the AirPro device and CCC ONE. Information is uploaded automatically, and the scan report is automatically attached to the vehicle’s CCC ONE workfile. Activation is simple. Repair facilities using CCC Diagnostics select their preferred diagnostic provider(s) from those available through CCC’s network and providers send scan data directly to the CCC ONE workfile. Source: CCC Intelligent Solutions
Ford’s July Sales Up 37% Compared to Same Month a Year Ago On improved inventory flow, Ford for the second month in a row is the only major automaker to produce sales gains, as its July sales grew 36.6% vs. an industry down 10.5%. “Ford was America’s best-selling brand in July powered by strong demand across our lineup,” said Andrew Frick, vice president, sales, distribution and trucks, Ford Blue. “Our overall sales rose 37% in July and electric vehicle sales grew at three times the rate of the EV segment. F-Series hit the 60,000-truck mark for the first time this year, with our all-new electric F-150 Lightning having its best sales month yet. Ford SUVs were up 70%, while E-Transit leads the electric van space with 95% of the electric van segment.” Ford total market share hit 13.9%—up 1.0 percentage point from June and 4.8 percentage points over a year ago. Gains come from higher EV sales and share, F-Series and high-end large SUVs. Ford electric vehicle sales were up 168.7%. With Mustang Mach-E up 74.1%, F-150 Lightning delivering its best-month since launch
and E-Transit’s dominant share position, Ford grew more than three times the rate of the overall electric vehicle segment in July. Sales of Ford Hybrid vehicles continue to climb, increasing 35.3% in July, placing the Ford brand second in hybrid vehicle sales to only Toyota. F-150 Hybrid sales totaled 4,364 vehicles, while Maverick Hybrid sales totaled 2,153 trucks.
in process. Ford BlueCruise customers accumulated 11.4 million miles of hands-free highway driving since July 2021. For the fourth straight month, Ford reported a record pace of just over 50% of retail sales coming from previously placed orders. Meanwhile, on Aug. 2, retail order banks re-opened for Bronco Sport, Edge, Explorer and Ranger. Retail orders for Ford’s hot-selling F-150 and Transit re-opened a few weeks earlier. Ford overall pickup sales, including F-Series, Ranger and Maverick, produced total sales of 74,034 up 27% over a year ago. Ford’s total pickup share for the month was 31.6%—up more than 6 percentage points over last year and the highest share of any brand in the total pickup segment. Ford brand SUV sales gained 70% over last year, totaling 66,266 SUVs. Combined Bronco family sales, including Bronco Sport, were up 227% over last year.
To date, 66,500 customers have purchased Ford’s BlueCruise hands-free driver-assist technology. Ford is expanding BlueCruise through Power-Up software updates, adding nearly 15,000 2021 F-150 and Mustang Mach-E customers in July, with another 35,000
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Lemonade to Use Mitchell’s Claim Solutions for Newest Product by Stacey Phillips
Mitchell, an Enlyte company, recently announced Lemonade, the insurance company powered by artificial intelligence (AI) and social impact, has chosen Mitchell’s claims management platform for the insurer’s newest product, Lemonade Car. The company will use Mitchell’s claims workflow, automation
and total loss solutions to help streamline and optimize claims handling. “At Lemonade, we’ve set out to make the most lovable car insurance available, and part of that is creating the best experience possible,” said a Lemonade spokesperson. “By collaborating with Mitchell and using the company’s comprehensive
claims management technology, we’re able to build efficiencies into our product to make it as seamless and easy for our customers to file a claim following an accident, as well as share necessary information with third-parties including auto body shops and medical facilities.” “We’re extremely proud that Lemonade—a top-rated insurer with a focus on fast, efficient claims resolution—has selected our technology to support their entry into the U.S. auto insurance market,” said Jack Rozint, senior vice president, repair sales, Mitchell Auto Physical Damage division. “Their decision to do so validates Mitchell’s leadership position in claims processing technology.” “We’re honored to support Lemonade,” said Debbie Day, executive vice president and general manager of Mitchell’s Auto Physical Damage division. “At Mitchell, we continue to invest in the development of innovative, cloud-based solutions that are designed to allow our customers to work more effi-
ciently while meeting consumer expectations for an automated, digital claims experience. Our auto physical damage and casualty solutions help carriers like Lemonade scale quickly as they bring best-in-class offerings to market.” Launched in November 2021, Lemonade Car uses telematics to measure how much and how safe people drive. It provides 24/7 on-location roadside assistance, re-
al-time crash detection and dispatch of emergency services, and offers perks for safe and environmentally conscious customers. These include discounts for low-mileage drivers and those who own electric and hybrid vehicles. After being introduced in Illinois and then expanding to Tennessee and Ohio, plans are in place to
continue rolling out Lemonade Car across the country. Mitchell, a leading technology and information provider for the property & casualty (P&C) claims and collision repair industries, will support Lemonade in delivering an efficient, digital claims experience for consumers purchasing auto policies. Lemonade is a full-stack insurance carrier built to provide the best, most delightful and most transparent insurance experience in the world, according to a company spokesperson. A Certified B-Corp, Lemonade gives unused premiums to nonprofits selected by its community, during its annual Giveback campaign. Rozint explained Mitchell’s solutions provide Lemonade with the technology needed to streamline key steps in the claims process, including loss reporting and damage appraisal. “Mitchell is committed to helping our customers—both automotive insurers and collision repairers— simplify and accelerate claims man-
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agement,” said Rozint. “Lemonade presented an excellent opportunity to apply our industry-leading solutions with a partner that is poised for rapid growth.” Through the collaboration, Rozint said Mitchell can assist the insurer with settling claims seamlessly while delivering an exceptional customer experience. “The integration of Mitchell’s solutions with Lemonade’s existing technology stack will support an automated, digital claims process— from first notice of loss (FNOL) to settlement,” he said. Lemonade is also leveraging Mitchell’s auto casualty injury claims processing solutions to automate both first-party auto and third-party liability claims. “Automating these functions is intended to align with the insurer’s goal for Lemonade Car: to use technology to handle emergencies and settle claims seamlessly, providing the best possible experience for customers,” according to a press release. “Lemonade is advancing the auto insurance market with sophisticated technology and Mitchell,
being an auto casualty technology leader, is happy to support those goals with our specialized casualty technology and service solutions,” said Norman Tyrrell, vice president of product management, Mitchell Casualty Solutions Group. “Lemonade will be leveraging Mitchell’s DecisionPoint Medical Bill Processing software as well as a number of our Technology Enabled Solutions.” Several years ago, Mitchell decided to rebuild its core platform around key concepts that included an open, cloud-based architecture, and support for proper and safe repairs. “With each new customer, we believe that the market is validating this direction,” said Rozint. For more information about Lemonade Car, visit www.lemonade.com/ car. For property casualty and collision repair updates and perspectives, follow Mitchell on Twitter @MitchellClaims and @MitchellRepair. www.autobodynews.com
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Repairify’s New Partnership What sets ATG apart from other training, according to Chesney, is the company’s specialization in OEM repair information and its approach to learning. “What ATG does is take that factory information and dissect it,” explained Chesney. “When it’s a competency around a standard that’s used by all brands, then they level the terms and the diagnostic approach so that it’s brand agnostic.” An important aspect of the training will include learning how to find OEM service information. “The big myth in the industry is the belief that OEM service information is hard to get a hold of,” said Chesney. He stressed the importance of checking the repair information on every vehicle. “In the case of things like ADAS, it changes daily and you need to go look at it for every repair or calibration,” recommended Chesney. “Otherwise, it can catch
you by surprise and get you in trouble.” Repairify’s ultimate goal is to help prepare technicians to repair future vehicles and present information in a way they will understand. “We look forward to enabling technicians with skills and technology so that what happens in the classroom sticks more and it gives them the ability to apply it when they get back to the shop,” he said. The company also plans to offer career paths for potential collision and mechanical technicians that are appropriate for their roles. “Bringing ATG alongside what we’re doing on the collision side really allows us to leverage our existing content, so our internal team of technicians and remote techs can be better prepared to help our customers,” said Chesney. For additional information about ATG, visit www.atgtraining.com.
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Hyundai Gets $19.2 Million Penalty for Tarnishing Millions of Customer Credit Reports by Michael Gauthier, CarScoops
Hyundai Capital America—the captive finance partner of Hyundai, Kia and Genesis in the U.S.— has been slammed by the U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau for “widespread credit reporting failures” that harmed millions of customers. According to the government, HCA repeatedly provided inaccurate information to credit reporting companies and didn’t take proper steps once problems were identified. Furthermore, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau alleges the company used “manual and outdated systems, processes and procedures to furnish credit reporting information—which led to widespread inaccuracies—and resulted in negative inaccurate information being placed on consumers’ credit reports through no fault of their own.” The scale of the problem was massive, as the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau found HCA furnished inaccurate information for more than 2.2 million custom-
ers on more than 8.7 million occasions between 2016 and 2020. Even worse, “In many cases, Hyundai knew it was providing inaccurate information and failed to take reasonable measures” to address the issue.
This hurt consumers as HCA would report customers delinquent on loans and leases, despite having been paid on time. In particular, the government found “in approximately 570,000 instances, Respondent (HCA) inaccurately inserted codes showing delinquent or no payments in the PHP (pay-
ment history profile) when the consumer had in fact made the required payments and the account was actually current.” Unsurprisingly, this lowered customers’ credit scores and impacted their access to credit. It also subjected them to higher interest rates due to their lower credit score. Following an investigation, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau determined HCA violated the Fair Credit Reporting Act by failing to report complete and accurate loan and lease account information, failing to provide date of first delinquency information when required, failing to modify or delete information when required, failing to have reasonable identity theft procedures, and failing to have reasonable accuracy and integrity policies and procedures. In a statement, Consumer Fi-
nancial Protection Bureau Director Rohit Chopra said, “Hyundai illegally tarnished credit reports for millions of borrowers, including by falsely reporting them to credit reporting companies as being delinquent on their loans and leases. Loan servicers must be complete and accurate when furnishing information that affects a borrower’s credit report.” HCA will pay a $6 million civil penalty to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, as well as $13.2 million in compensation to current and former customers who had inaccurate information furnished to credit reporting companies saying they were “30 or more days past due on an automobile retail installment contract or lease.” While $19.2 million sounds like chump change, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau noted this was its largest Fair Credit Reporting Act case against an auto servicer. The bureau also revealed Americans owe $1.4 trillion in auto loans, making it the third largest consumer credit market.
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CREF Invites Collision Industry to Fall 2022 High School & College Transportation Student Career Fairs Aging workforce blues got you down? Worried about who will fill the workforce as older employees retire? Ready to do something about it? The Collision Repair Education Foundation (CREF) invites industry businesses to participate in its Fall 2022 High School & College Transportation Student Career Fairs, being scheduled across the country to provide employers with an opportunity to get to know thousands of incoming industry professionals. “CREF’s Career Fairs provide a unique opportunity for collision industry employers to connect with hundreds of students who have trained for entry-level positions and are ready to start their careers,” said CREF Program Manager Tiffany Bulak. “Engaging with future transportation industry professionals is vital for all segments of the industry— collision centers, dealerships and even paint, tool and equipment companies—as a means of generating brand awareness for the
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business but most importantly, in order to showcase the diverse career paths available to the students in attendance.” Fall 2022 High School & College Transportation Student Career Fair Schedule Oct. 4: 3M Headquarters, SaintPaul, MN Nov. 9: Kingwood Park High School, Houston, TX Nov. 10: Collin College, Dallas, TX Dec. 6: Suburban Showcase Conference Center, Detroit, MI To complement the physical career fair events and ensure CREF helps connect students with employers across the country, CREF also has an electronic student resume database with contact information for over 600 collision students. Interested in participating in an event listed above, or in collaborating with CREF to schedule one in your market? Contact Bulak at Tiffany.Bulak@ed-foundation.org.
Can’t attend a career fair but still anxious to get your company name in front of incoming technicians? Support local high school and college collision students by sponsoring work uniforms to ensure the future workforce recognizes the value of looking professional. For a donation of just $50 per student, companies can provide students with a brand new Cintas technician shirt, branded with your logo, work pants and a safety kit. Email Tiffany.Bulak@ ed-foundation.org to learn more. Industry members interested in getting involved and supporting CREF’s efforts to assist secondary and post-secondary collision repair training programs should contact Brandon Eckenrode, managing director, at 312-231-0258 or Brandon.Eckenrode@ed-foundation.org. Monetary donations can be made online. Source: CREF
3M, CREF Donate Products to 300 Schools As 2021 drew to an end, 3M donated $889,719.50 in products and supplies to 300 schools around the country, through the Collision Repair Education Foundation (CREF). Equipping collision education programs with the most upto-date supplies, materials, tools and equipment allows collision instructors to train students with the same products they’ll be using in their future positions in the industry—without maxing out the department’s budget. Each care package included several DA sanders, along with sanding/graining/finishing discs, sandpaper, repair glue and “all kinds of good stuff,” according to Jerry Goodson, collision repair and refinishing instructor at Chippewa Valley Technical College in Eau Claire, WI. Since 2008, 3M has actively aided CREF’s efforts to assist collision students, instructors and schools, generously providing frequent in-kind donations, funding grants and supporting CREF’s Hire Our Heroes campaign. Source: CREF
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