June 2022 Southwest Edition

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Vol. 40 / Issue 6 / June 2022

Oklahoma Auto Repair Shops Struggle to Get Parts Due to Supply Chain Issues

Louisiana House Committee Passes Bill that Could Impose Usage Fees on Electric, Hybrid Vehicles

by Brady Halblieb, KJRH News

by Victor Skinner, The Center Square

For people in need of a major car repair, it might be a tough road ahead. Auto repair shops across the country are struggling to get parts to make repairs in a timely manner. This is happening as used car prices skyrocketed across the country in the last year. Rising used car prices are forcing more people to get their cars repaired instead of replaced. Now, some major car parts are taking longer to be delivered and that means waiting longer to get cars fixed.

“More now than ever are people wanting to invest in what they already have,” said Hunter Lindsey, service manager for Christian Brothers Automotive in Tulsa, OK. That means a lot of business for Lindsey and his team at Christian Brothers Automotive near 81st and Mingo. They see about 100 cars per week making repairs to transmissions, engines and critical drive components like joints and axles too. “We do big vehicle repairs and those are some of the harder parts to

A bill to impose annual road usage fees for electric and hybrid vehicles

See Supply Chain Issues, Page 10

gained approval from the Louisiana House Transportation, Highways and Public Works Committee. Committee members voted 9-3 to approve House Bill 1031 to require owners of electric and hybrid vehicles to pay an annual road usage fee, “so those people driving hybrids and electrics are paying something for our roads and highways,” said Rep. Barbara Freiberg, R-Baton Rouge, the bill’s sponsor. Freiberg said May 2 the See Impose Usage Fees, Page 12

Massachusetts Auto Body Techs Demanding Higher Pay Surround Beacon Hill

Ford Dealers Defying Company Orders with Insane F-150 Lightning Markups

by Matthew Medsger, Boston Herald

by Simon Alvarez, Teslarati

Auto body repair mechanics crashed the Massachusetts State House on May 18, joined by dozens of tow trucks circling the building, horns

AASP-MA/Facebook

blaring, to push for a pay hike on what the industry says are the lowestin-the-nation reimbursement rates. “34 years—we’ve changed almost nothing,” Tom Ricci, legislative director of the Alliance of Automotive Service Providers of Massachusetts (AASP-MA), said to a raucous crowd of auto body shop owners and workers. “This is our day to make a lot of noise—not just a little, don’t be shy, let’s go, let’s rock this place—we’ve done this for so long, since 1988,” he said. See Higher Pay, Page 14

Ford has made it clear over the past months that dealers should not overcharge for popular electric vehicles like the F-150 Lightning. CEO Jim Farley has spoken up against it, and Ford has written a sternly-worded letter to dealers warning them of the consequences they may face if they charge too much for the all-electric pickup truck. Ford and its CEO’s warnings appear to have fallen on some deaf ears. As mentioned by the Lightning Owners’ forum to Teslarati, a Ford dealer in California has been spotted charging around $145,000 for a 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning Platinum SuperCrew. The same dealership, DCH Ford of Thousand Oaks in Westlake Village, CA, also had a couple more Lightning options available for about $130,000. Another dealer in Napa, CA, had a 2022 F-150 Lightning Platinum listed for almost $134,000. That’s a markup of about $40,000, or about

the same amount as a base F-150 Lightning Pro. While the F-150 Lightning Platinum starts at about $91,000 and options could easily bloat the vehicle’s price, a markup that puts the all-electric pickup truck well into the $130,000- to $145,000 range is substantial. It could even, perhaps, result in some Ford dealers being punished by the company.

Ford has been clamping down on improper dealer behavior, especially with regard to its all-electric vehicles. Just recently, the Blue Oval said dealers might be fined $25,000 for selling demo units of the F-150 Lightning early. Fined dealers would also be blacklisted from the Ford Courtesy Transportation Program (FCTP).

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CONTENTS REGIONAL

Advertise in our Classified Section for $50 per column inch! for U.S.-Based EV Battery Manufacturing ��� 41

Car Shops Team Up with TV News Crew to Surprise Oklahoman in Need ������������������������� 6 Earnhardt Auto Centers Donates $245,000 to TOPS Scholarships for Payson Christian School ��������������������������������������������������������� 10

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Branch Launches 6 New States ���������������������� 14 CCC Launches Integration with asTech ����������� 42

ltedesco@autobodynews.com www.autobodynews.com

AUTOBODY

CCC Promotes Janik to SVP ���������������������������� 40 Collision Repair Industry Consultant Won’t Let Health Issues Stop Him ������������������������� 38

Serving Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, New Mexico, Arkansas, Colorado, Arizona, Utah 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.

Audi Wholesale Parts Dealers ������������������������ 47

Kia Motors Wholesale Parts Dealers �������������� 43

Auto Data Labels �������������������������������������������� 23

Larry H. Miller Ford Mesa ������������������������������ 26

AutoMart Mitsubishi �������������������������������������� 31

Launch Tech USA ������������������������������������������� 48

Axalta Coating Systems ��������������������������������� 10

Mac Haik Ford-Lincoln ����������������������������������� 33

BMW Wholesale Parts Dealers ���������������������� 40

Mazda Wholesale Parts Dealers ��������������������� 45

Bob Utter Kia �������������������������������������������������� 30

Mitsubishi Wholesale Parts ��������������������������� 38

Certified Automotive Parts Association ���������� 20

MOPAR Wholesale Parts Dealers ������������������� 29

Chevyland ������������������������������������������������������ 32

NOROO Paint & Coatings �������������������������������� 13

Used in Auto Body Shops ��������������������������� 36

Christopher’s Dodge-Ram ������������������������ 14, 31

North Freeway Hyundai ��������������������������������� 26

I-CAR Now IACET Accredited ������������������������� 41

Classifieds ������������������������������������������������������ 46

Northside Chevrolet ��������������������������������������� 27

Dominion Sure Seal, Ltd ��������������������������������� 15

Part of the Club ���������������������������������������������� 31

Eagle Abrasives ����������������������������������������������� 5

Peak Kia ��������������������������������������������������������� 31

Emich Chevrolet ��������������������������������������� 11, 31

Platinum Auto Trends ��������������������������������������� 6

Finnegan Chrysler-Jeep-Dodge-Ram ���������������� 2

Santa Fe Kia ��������������������������������������������������� 34

ISRI, IPMI on Catalytic Converter Theft ������� 45

Fisher Acura ��������������������������������������������������� 31

SATA Dan-Am Company ���������������������������������� 7

Register for ASE Certification �������������������������� 32

Fisher Honda �������������������������������������������������� 31

Schmelz Countryside �������������������������������������� 31

Register for CIECA CONNEX 2022 ������������������� 28

Flatirons Subaru ��������������������������������������������� 31

Schomp Mazda ���������������������������������������������� 28

NATIONAL

Repairify Completes Record Scans ����������������� 19

Ford Wholesale Parts Dealers ������������������������ 39

Scoggin-Dickey Parts Center ������������������������� 8-9

1Collision, Auto Techcelerators Partner ����������� 44

SCRS Offers Update on Collision Repair

Fowler Honda ������������������������������������������������� 34

Sorbothane Soft-Blow Mallet ������������������������� 12

Freeman Mazda ��������������������������������������������� 34

Stevinson Toyota West ���������������������������������� 31

Garcia Honda ������������������������������������������������� 36

Subaru Wholesale Parts Dealers �������������������� 41

GM Wholesale Parts Dealers ������������������������� 37

Sunmight USA ������������������������������������������ 16-17

WIN Education Conference Offers Collision

Honda-Acura Wholesale Parts Dealers ������24-25

Toyota of Laredo �������������������������������������������� 18

Repair Industry Chance to ‘Recharge,

Horne Kia ������������������������������������������������������� 22

Toyota Wholesale Parts Dealers ��������������������� 35

Reset & Renew’ �������������������������������������������� 4

Hyundai Wholesale Parts Dealers ������������������ 44

Volkswagen Wholesale Parts Dealers ������������ 40

Induction Innovations, Inc ������������������������������ 19

Wrenchers ����������������������������������������������������� 21

Drive to Redistribute Supplies Amid Shortage ����������������������������������������������������� 12 Louisiana House Committee Passes Bill that Could Impose Usage Fees on Electric, Hybrid Vehicles ��������������������������������������������� 1

Collision Repair Industry Trailblazer Sheila Loftus Dies at 79 ������������������������������ 44 Consumer Skepticism Toward Autonomous Driving Features Justified ��������������������������� 45 Cox Automotive Forecast: No Relief in Sight as Slow New-Vehicle Sales Persist in April � 42

NABC Recycled Rides Program Joins

CREF Introduces 2022 Executive Committee �� 12

USAA in Texas for Kickoff of 100-Car

Farmers Insurance Wins NABC Award ����������� 46

Gifting across the U.S. ���������������������������������� 6

Fisker PEAR to Be Produced in Foxconn’s

®

Oklahoma Auto Repair Shops Struggle to Get Parts Due to Supply Chain Issues ����������� 1 Tesla Attempts to Help as Texas’ Power Grid in Trouble Yet Again ������������������������������������ 14 Tesla Model 3 Fleet Chosen as New Law Enforcement Vehicle in Texas County ���������� 11

Ohio Plant ���������������������������������������������������� 41 Ford Dealers Defying Company Orders

Anderson - 7 Steps to Implementing Improvements Within Your Auto Body Repair Business ��������������������������������� 28 Attanasio - She Sold Her Auto Body Shop to Become an Artist ������������������������������������ 30 Yoswick - CIC Committee Looking at How Estimates End Up on Vehicle History Reports ������������������������������������������������������� 34

Ford Recalls Certain 2021 Expeditions and Lincoln Navigators for Potential Fire Concern ������������������������������������������������������� 22

Massachusetts Auto Body Techs Demanding Higher Pay Surround Beacon Hill ������������������� 1 New Estimates Show Traffic Fatalities Reached a 16-Year High in 2021 ������������������ 42 Recyclers Association Leaders Meet with

3M Offering Specialized Products, Training,

Industry Projects; DEG Offers Update ���������� 18

Support to Collision Repair Shops to Help

Sherwin-Williams Debuts E-Solution ��������������� 11

Drive Profit Efficiencies ������������������������������� 26

Volkswagen Bringing Back Scout Brand

asTech, Driven Brands Partner to Deliver Diagnostics, Calibrations, Programming ������ 44 Average Collision Repair-Related Length of Rental Increases 4.9 Days in Q1 ����������������� 20 Biden Administration Announces $3B Plan

Autobody News P.O. Box 1516 Carlsbad, CA 92018 (800) 699-8251 (760) 603-3229 Fax www.autobodynews.com editor@autobodynews.com

with Insane F-150 Lightning Markups ����������� 1

Glue Pulling Repair Becoming More Commonly COLUMNISTS

INDEX OF ADVERTISERS

Publisher & Editor: Jeremy Hayhurst General Manager: Barbara Davies Contributing Writers: John Yoswick, Janet Chaney, Toby Chess, Ed Attanasio, Stacey Phillips Advertising Sales: Joe Momber, Norman Morano, (800) 699-8251 Office Manager: Louise Tedesco Digital Marketing Manager: Bryan Malinski Art Director: Rodolfo Garcia Graphic Designer: Vicki Sitarz Online and Web Content Editor: Abby Andrews Accounting Manager: Heather Priddy Permissions Editor: Randi Scholtes Office Assistant: Dianne Pray

Earnhardt Auto Centers Hosts Baby Formula

with Electric Truck, SUV ������������������������������ 46

autobodynews.com / JUNE 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS 3


WIN Education Conference Offers Collision Repair Industry Chance to ‘Recharge, Reset & Renew’ by Abby Andrews

The Women’s Industry Network (WIN) held its first-ever hybrid Education Conference, May 2-4, online and in-person in Greenville, SC. The three-day slate of events included panel discussions, presentations, networking opportunities, a National Auto Body Council Recycled Rides giveaway, a walk to raise money for WIN’s scholarship fund and a gala to celebrate the winners of this year’s Most Influential Women awards.

Panelists discuss the ongoing challenges to the collision repair industry brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Panel Discussion: Industry Changes, Challenges & Opportunities in a Post-COVID World On May 3, a panel of people representing all facets of the collision repair process—insurers, rental car companies, parts and materials distributors, OEMs and auto body shop managers—talked about the pandemic-induced supply chain and staffing issues and trends that have increased cycle times, leading to frustration for everyone, down to the customers. Brenda Hewitt, Guaranteed Repair Network manager for the Western U.S. for Liberty Mutual, said the pandemic put a lot of pressure on an industry that was already feeling a lot of pressures. “Everybody was worried for several months [at the onset of the pandemic],” Hewitt said. “Fast forward to last summer, and not only do we still have jobs, but we have more than we can do. Now we’re looking at inflation. “It’s about how to work together and not point fingers at everyone in the industry,” she said. “Customers that maybe before [the pandemic] came in scared and frustrated but friendly, more and more are coming in angry and looking to blame somebody,” Hewitt

said. “We all have to empathize and understand that everybody’s in a different spot.” Angie Babin, vice president of supply chain for Caliber Collision, said there was already a shortage of technicians before COVID, but now everyone is recognizing it. “The labor shortage also increases cycle time on receiving parts and materials, unloading parts, delivering them; we’re seeing [labor shortages] across the board,” Babin said. “We need to sell to people why they need to come work in this industry.” Genevieve Dombrowski, senior vice president of human resources for LKQ Corp., said the pandemic also contributed to a marked exit of women from the labor force, as women left careers to stay at home when kids’ childcare providers and schools closed. “Two million women exited the workforce in the last two years, and they haven’t come back in droves,” Dombrowski said. “We need to be more flexible with work times and shifts. I think it will take disruption to get women back.” Turning to supply chain issues, Denise Kingstrom, BASF’s supply chain director for coatings solutions in North and South America, said while demand for collision repair materials initially declined, there have been big jumps in demand since, which the logistics side has not been prepared to handle. Kingstrom said all aspects of the chain have been affected, from raw materials to transportation to production facilities. “We have to adjust by working with the other partners in the chain, to see where you can flex to address some of those challenges,” she said, offering examples of combining shipments or using rail service instead of trucks. Future Tech: Technology & EV Repair Trends Jake Rodenroth, North American body repair program manager for Lucid, talked about how EVs are assembled, operated, owned and powered. There are a lot of compelling reasons for an OEM to go all-EV,

4 JUNE 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

Rodenroth said, including manufacturing savings and scalability, but EVs present different challenges to collision repairers.

Jake Rodenroth, North American body repair program manager for Lucid

EVs use lighter materials that are riveted instead of welded, have much larger batteries with more voltage and use a lot more coolant to cool those battery packs — eight to 10 gallons in a single EV, compared to two gallons in a gas-powered car. EVs will also have an increasing amount of ADAS features and the related sensors and cameras— Rodenroth said the Lucid Air sedan has 14 cameras and 32 sensors, requiring a 15-by-30-foot area to recalibrate. EVs do not need oil changes and go twice as far between brake jobs, he said, and there is only one piece that moves—the rotor—as opposed to an internal combustion engine, which has a lot of moving internal parts. Rodenroth said 3-D printing certain parts, rather than ordering them, could become common. “Shops could get licenses to print out a bumper cover, for instance,” he said. What’s Behind the Glass—Reflections on My Leadership Journey Renee Cacchillo wrapped up the conference May 4 with a keynote speech on how her education and career path led to becoming Safelite’s first female CEO in 2021, and the challenges and opportunities both along the way and going forward. Cacchillo was announced as the CEO of Safelite, a national company

that will celebrate its 75th anniversary in June and the leading provider of auto glass for repair, replacement and recalibration, in September 2021. She officially assumed the role in December. After earning a bachelor’s degree in business, Cacchillo worked for Dillard’s Inc. and Hallmark, while taking night classes to earn her MBA, and then Accenture, Lbrands and Bob Evans. In 2011, Cacchillo started with Safelite. Over the next 11 years, she worked in a range of areas within the company, including service delivery, customer experience, marketing and technology, before being named the company’s CEO.

Renee Cacchillo, CEO of Safelite.

People kept telling me, ‘Renee, you’ve broken the glass ceiling,’” Cacchillo said. “Other people paved the way for me, but I’m paving the way for others.” Cacchillo encouraged women to get comfortable possibly being alone in a male-dominated area, but to not be surprised when other women see their success and are inspired to emulate it. To illustrate her point, Cacchillo said Safelite only had two female glass technicians nationwide before the company created a recruitment ad featuring one of them. The day after the ad started running, the company heard from 6,000 interested applicants—40% of whom were women. “Every market has female trainees in class now,” Cacchillo said. “They are still the minority but [the ad] brought their attention to the fact they could have a future at Safelite.”

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NABC Recycled Rides® Program Joins USAA in Texas for Kickoff of 100-Car Gifting across the U.S. On May 12, 10 deserving Texas veterans and their families were honored at USAA headquarters in San Antonio, TX, and presented with National Auto Body Council (NABC) Recycled Rides® vehicles, all donated by USAA and refurbished by Caliber Collision. The presentation kicks off USAA’s 100th anniversary celebration, through which it will gift 100 NABC Recycled Rides vehicles to military families across the country, including Nashville, TN; Seattle, WA; Chesapeake, VA; Savannah, GA; Charlotte, NC; Colorado Springs and Denver, CO; Phoenix, AZ; Tampa, FL; and finally San Diego, CA. The military recipients have been identified by various nonprofits. “We were honored to join our member USAA in their 100th anniversary celebration, and grateful to our member Caliber Collision, which refurbished all of today’s beautiful vehicles,” said Bill Garoutte, president and CEO of the NABC. “It is incredible to meet these veterans and their families and hear their stories. We are honored to be able to pay tribute to their

service to the country and help them continue their path to independence and success with the gift of reliable transportation.” The military charities that identified the recipients were the Military Warriors Support Foundation, Soliders’ Angels, Wounded Warrior Project, Endeavors and the Freedom Mobility Foundation. The veterans who received vehicles included: • Sgt. Ben Barlett, U.S. Marine Corps • Petty Officer Leo Leonardo, U.S. Navy Spc. Alfred Pardo, U.S. Army • • Petty Officer 1st Class Wesley Goodman, U.S. Navy • Pfc. Hannah Shannon-Maldonado, U.S. Army • Petty Officer 2nd Class Frances Quintanilla, U.S. Navy • Sgt. Johnny Nguyen, U.S. Army • Pvt. Vanessa Gonzales, U.S. Army Airman Eric Lautanen, U.S. • Air Force • Sgt. James Madison, U.S. Air Force and U.S. Army “I appreciate this so much,”

said Shannon-Maldonado, a U.S. Army veteran. “It will make such a difference in my life with my daughter. I have five more years of school to get my masters in social work and this will help make that dream possible.”

Caliber Collision teammates volunteered their time and expertise to refurbish the 10 vehicles at nine of its San Antonio locations. During the gifting, Caliber Vice President of Operations Steve Horton honored the recipients and thanked Caliber teammates. “Caliber’s purpose is Restoring the Rhythm of Your Life—for

our customers, clients, teammates and those in the communities we serve,” Horton said. “We are humbled to know that together, with our industry partners, these gifts of transportation will give our veterans the freedom and independence to do many of the daily routines many of us take for granted—going to work, school, grocery stores or simply enjoying a family trip to the park.” Additional partners in the presentation included 1.800.Charity.Cars and Enterprise. NABC Recycled Rides is a unique program in which businesses representing all facets of the collision repair industry team up to repair and donate vehicles to individuals and families in need of reliable transportation. Since the inception of the NABC Recycled Rides program in 2007, members of the NABC have donated nearly 3,000 vehicles valued at some $42 million. Source: NABC

Car Shops Team Up with TV News Crew to Surprise Oklahoman in Need By Adam Snider, KFOR News

Left stranded after a hit and run, an Oklahoma City, OK, woman turned to KFOR News’ “In Your Corner” for help, but as its investigation began, a local organization reached out with a surprise up its sleeve. Janie Tuttle was eastbound on Reno Avenue when a driver ran right in her way. “We had a head on collision,” said Tuttle. “By the time we got out of the vehicle and all the smoke got out of the vehicle, unfortunately [the driver] had left the scene.” With her airbags deployed, Tuttle said her Hyundai was totaled out by insurance. This is the second time her vehicle’s been totaled in less than a year, after a golf-ball sized hailstorm last spring. Her car is now stuck in a lot, and Tuttle was left with few options in a red hot used car market. “I feel like now I’m starting from square one again for sure,” she said. Tuttle called “In Your Corner,” hoping to put out word to find the driver responsible. The incident happened March 27 near Reno and Martin Luther King avenues. All Tuttle knows is

it was a silver car involved. She told the news team she’s lucky the accident wasn’t worse. “God doesn’t do anything for nothing. You know, he has a purpose,” said Tuttle. “I promise you something good will come out of it.” The news interview took place outside a KFOR garage, and little did Tuttle know, something good was hidden on the other side of the door. Inside the news outlet’s building were the Community Auto Repair Pros, a coalition of local auto shops as part of the NAPA Auto Care Program. “We’ve got a vehicle we’d like to make available to you, since you’re in a situation,” said Mike Bailey, with the group. “So we can help you out here.” Tuttle is now the proud owner of a Buick, and back out on the road. “Buicks are great, so thank you very much,” she said to the coalition. “I wasn’t even expecting it.” Car Pros will also be helping Tuttle take care of her tax and title. As for the hit and run, the investigation continues. Anyone with information should contact Oklahoma City Police.

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Continued from Cover

Supply Chain Issues get,” Lindsey said. A part that used to take days to get to his shop now takes weeks. But its electrical components Lindsey said are the hardest to find. These include items like radios, touchscreens and DVD players that could take months to come in. Nationally, the price of a used car has skyrocketed 37% in the past year with a lack of inventory to blame. Lindsey has been here for more than seven years, he said it’s never been this challenging to get parts. With better containment of COVID-19 and more international shipping, experts predict supply chain issues could ease down the road. Lindsey is cautioning drivers to do everything they can to prevent any major repairs. He said the best way to do that is to be proactive. He said to frequently get your car serviced. www.autobodynews.com

Earnhardt Auto Centers Donates $245,000 to TOPS Scholarships for Payson Christian School Earnhardt Auto Centers has donated $245,000 to TOPS for Kids, a nonprofit organization, which will use the money to provide scholarships for needy children who attend Payson Christian School. “TOPS for Kids provides financial assistance that makes it possible for many children to attend a private school,” said Earnhardt Auto Centers owner Hal Earnhardt. “The assistance is used for low-income, fostered and disabled kids who need help in meeting educational goals.” The current $245,000 donation will assist children at Payson Christian School, a community school accredited by ACSI and Cognia. Established 35 years ago, the private school serves pre-schoolers through eighth graders from Payson, AZ, and the surrounding area. “We are pleased that this will assist children with scholarships at Payson Community Christian School,” said Earnhardt. “It has a reputation for educational excellence, and we know that children prosper there.” Current donations are part of an ongoing effort by the family-owned

Coming Soon!

dealership group to support children and educational institutions. In the last four years, the company has helped dozens of students at Payson Christian School. These scholarships were part of the almost $2.3 million TOPS scholarships contributed by the dealership group over the last four years. “At Earnhardt Auto Centers, we value education, and we care about children,” said Earnhardt. “It was only natural that our family-owned business would contribute to TOPS.” TOPS for Kids works with hundreds of private schools across Phoenix, AZ, and the surrounding region. The nonprofit receives public donations and channels those into thousands of scholarships benefitting children statewide. “Thus far, we have been able to provide almost $2.3 million in scholarships because of the generous giving of the Earnhardt family,” said Tanya Delo, TOPS for Kids corporate coordinator. “It’s clear that the Earnhardt family has the heart to help underserved children of Arizona. Thanks to Earnhardt’s generosity over the last four years, TOPS has as-

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sisted over 655 low-income and disabled students with their tuition needs in 11 different schools.” TOPS for Kids donors can request their scholarships are directed to a particular school; however, the TOPS board has the final say in distributions. Scholarships are awarded to low-income and/or disabled students as well as displaced children in foster care. “Payson Christian School is grateful for Mr. Hal Earnhardt’s incredible financial support,” said Dr. Aaron Walp, administrator of Payson Christian School. “Hal has made it possible for dozens of students to attend our school over the last four years who could not have done so otherwise.” Earnhardt Auto Centers and the Earnhardt family are involved in numerous ongoing charitable projects. They are continuing the legacy of their founder, Tex Earnhardt. “Beyond the fiscal assistance, Hal Earnhardt is a friend to our team,” said Walp. “We are grateful for the years of support and look forward to a strong connection as time progresses.” Source: Earnhardt Auto Centers

FINISHES


Tesla Model 3 Fleet Chosen as New Law Enforcement Vehicle in Texas County by Joey Klender, Teslarati

A fleet of Tesla Model 3s will now be the patrol vehicles for Dallas County, TX, law enforcement officers. The Dallas County Commissioners Court approved the purchase of three Model 3 all-electric sedans April 19. The Model 3s will be replacement vehicles in the county’s fleet of law enforcement sedans, a report from Fox 4 in Dallas said, but they also hold another purpose: test mules for the possibility of adding more Model 3s to the fleet in the coming years. “Very excited about this one,” Commissioner Elba Garcia said about the acquisition of the Model 3 fleet. “It’s the purchase of the Teslas that we’ve been talking about when we talk about the great job that our automotive service center is doing and our environment. It’s plain and simple. Having these cars is a great start.” The Model 3s cost about $65,000 each, for a total purchase of $190,000. Based on Tesla’s current pricing for the Model 3, this would

indicate Dallas County is acquiring three sedans at the most premium trim level: the Performance. The Tesla Model 3 Performance is the fastest configuration of the company’s mass-market sedan. It has 315 miles of range, a top speed of 162 miles per hour and a 0-60

MPH acceleration time of just 3.1 seconds. The vehicle is also the only Model 3 trim to come with performance brakes, 20-inch Überturbine wheels, a carbon fiber spoiler and aluminum alloy pedals. Current delivery timeframes sit between June and August. The acquisition of the Teslas was not a unanimous decision. Commissioner John Wiley Price was in favor of purchasing new government cars from another manufacturer, maintaining Tesla’s consideration

was because of its household name. “Hell no,” Price said. “The problem is as I said the only reason Tesla is out there is because the others are not tested, and Tesla is. I’ve been told by Mr. Cooper that the others are trying to get to market, so I vote no.” Price may have reservations regarding Tesla for any number of reasons. While there are other attractive EV options on the market, Tesla’s Model 3 has been chosen by several police departments in the past for use in patrol with positive feedback after a lengthy ownership experience. Officers in Westport, CT, reported massive cost savings from driving an electric vehicle compared to previous combustion engine patrol units. Additionally, the Ford Mustang Mach-E has been chosen for several police departments in the U.S. and Europe. A larger, more spacious option than the Model 3, Ford’s GT Performance trim level of the Mustang Mach-E packs 270 miles of range, a 3.8-second 0-60 MPH acceleration time and 480 horsepower.

Sherwin-Williams Debuts E-Solution Sherwin-Williams® is addressing critical industry needs with the launch of Collision Core™. The feature-rich Collision Core suite of programs addresses key business operations in a shop including inventory, production, color, quality and scorecard (diagnostics). Collision Core focuses on optimizing labor through connected metrics from production and cycle time to customer satisfaction and profitability. The five solutions, which can be adopted individually or all together are Collision Core Inventory, Production, Quality, Scorecard and Color. Collision Core is an interconnectable suite of intelligent applications designed to build strength and stability into the core of any collision center’s business—removing silos and connecting data, refining and validating processes, optimizing labor and resources, educating and engaging employees, reducing waste and identifying root cause and effect. To request more information, visit Collision Core. Source: Sherwin-Williams

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CREF Introduces 2022 Executive Committee The Collision Repair Education Foundation (CREF) is excited to announce and introduce its newly appointed Executive Committee, which consists of seven industry professionals who are dedicated to supporting the future of the industry through engagement with collision schools and students. CREF’s 2022 Executive Committee includes Chair Steve Schmidt, State Farm; Vice Chair Kevin Burnett, Gerber Collision & Glass; Secretary Doug Irish, Fayetteville Technical Community College; Treasurer Ryan West, GEICO; Trustee-at-Large Don Mikrut, Wejo; Trustee-at-Large Brenda Hogen, Parts Trader; and Immediate Past Chair Tom Wolf, PPG Industries. “The CREF Board of Trustees encompasses a fantastic cross-section of the industry,” said Schmidt. “Each participant is eager to work toward CREF’s vision and goals, and they are open to sharing their wealth of knowledge to bolster CREF’s success.” Source: CREF

Continued from Cover

Impose Usage Fees state Office of Motor Vehicles does not have a means to identify hybrid or electric vehicles and collects registrations every other year, so she worked with the Department of Revenue to include an annual fee on the state income tax form. “It says the Department of Revenue shall require each person filing an individual income tax return to report and certify on such return the number of electric vehicles and the number of hybrid vehicles registered in the state and owned by the filer,” she said. “The Department of Revenue shall collect the fees imposed … at the same time and in the same manner it collects taxes,” Freiberg said. HB 1031 dedicates 70% of the money collected to a Department of Transportation and Development fund for road and bridge projects, while 30% would go to the parish transportation fund to be distributed to local governments. The bill initially included an-

Earnhardt Auto Centers Hosts Baby Formula Drive to Redistribute Supplies Amid Shortage Earnhardt Auto Centers, in partnership with St. Vincent de Paul and Arizona Mommies, is holding a baby formula drive to help alleviate the current shortage. Parents and caregivers are encouraged to drop off any unneeded, unused formula for redistribution. “This redistribution drive is in response to the baby formula shortage affecting the United States,” said Mollie Everett, corporate advertising manager for Earnhardt Auto Centers. “We are hoping area parents who have unused cans of formula will respond to this request. It’s a matter of moving this critical food source into the hands of area parents who are struggling to find baby formula in stores.” “Being a parent with an infant is hard enough without the worry that you may not be able to feed your baby,” said Allison Ott, founder of Arizona Mommies, an online forum and social motherhood community. The drive runs from May 16-30. The public is encouraged to check their cupboards for single-serving packets, liquid bottles

and sample sizes, as well as larger cans of powder infant formulas and toddler formulas. Only sealed, non-expired formula products are requested. To find a convenient drop-off spot, a list of dealership locations can be found at NoBull.com. “It is critical that generous people do NOT rush out and buy infant formula,” said Everett. “We need to keep the available formula in stores for parents who are seeking it.” For those looking for additional ways to help, purchased baby wipes and diapers will be accepted for distribution by St. Vincent de Paul, an Arizona charitable organization. This is a good time for parents to get rid of any unneeded, open packages of diapers as well. “Our community is full of moms that are actively providing support for one another in a variety of ways,” said Ott. “And the public’s assistance in this redistribution effort will help expand that support to more parents in the Valley.”

nual fees of $400 for electric vehicles and $200 for hybrids, but was amended to lower the fees to $110 and $60, respectively. “What we wanted to do in the bill initially was to collect what the average payer of a gas vehicle would pay in not only Louisiana gas tax, but also federal,” Freiberg said. Instead, Freiberg limited the fee to what the average traditional car owner would pay annually from the state’s gas tax of 20 cents per gallon, coming up with a figure based on average miles traveled and miles per gallon. DOTD Secretary Shawn Wilson told the committee other states have already adopted similar measures. “The intent behind this bill is to establish a principle of paying a fair share,” he said. “And the fair share is that with the evolution and the growth in electric vehicles and hybrid vehicles that’s something we’re currently not taking advantage of. “Structurally, we don’t have a way to do that consistent with what we charge every other vehicle on the roads to be able to pay for their use of that road system,” Wilson said.

Wilson characterized the bill as a starting point for creating a system to charge those who use the roadways, regardless of fuel type. Louisiana Secretary of Revenue Kevin Richard testified the voluntary attestation the bill would include on state tax forms would be a relatively easy addition, with little cost to implement. “This is something simple for us to do,” he said. Lawmakers on the committee raised questions about how the possibility of eliminating state income tax would impact the fee collections, and how the state would collect the fee from commercial and municipal electric fleets, but Freiberg and officials stressed the HB 1031 is a starting point that can be amended as needed in the future. Freiberg said adding the fee to business tax forms is something she’s considering as the legislation moves forward. HB 1031 now moves to the full House for consideration.

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Branch Launches 6 New States

Tesla Attempts to Help as Texas’ Power Grid in Trouble Yet Again

Branch, a full-stack insurance company that pioneered instantly-bundled home and auto insurance, announced April 1 its expansion to six new states including Idaho, Iowa, New Hampshire, South Dakota, Tennessee and Virginia. These new additions bring Branch’s total state roster to 25 and means 49% of Americans can access Branch’s instant-pricing capability. Through Branch’s rapid growth, the company maintains a stellar customer service experience with an impressive 4.8 Trustpilot rating. Having launched in six new states since the beginning of 2022, Branch continues to attract new members with its instant-pricing capability and average annual bundled savings of $535. With the goal of national coverage halfway completed, Branch continues to pave the way for convenient and affordable insurance with the aim of being available in all 50 states before the end of 2022. Source: Branch

Texas has been having intermittent issues with its dated power grid for years, though these past few winters have brought the issue into the eyes of the media. Now, as hotter temperatures are upon us, the state’s grid is struggling once again. The increased demand for electricity in the Lone Star State has caused officials to alert customers of potential issues, requesting they work to conserve energy. ERCOT, the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, recently announced six power plants had tripped due to the excessive power use associated with rising temperatures. The council issued the following statement via Electrek, asking customers to limit the amount of power they use between peak times, 3 to 8 p.m.: “This afternoon, six power generation facilities tripped offline resulting in the loss of approximately 2,900 MW of electricity ...

Continued from Cover

Higher Pay The group gathered outside the State House to demand action on a pair of proposals before the lawmakers that would raise the lowestin-the-nation labor rate for auto body repairs. The bills, H.1111 and S.709, both called “An Act to establish minimum reimbursement rate to insurance claimants,” are currently being ironed out between the legislative chambers through a joint committee. Both would set the rate for repair at upwards of $78 per hour of labor, according to advocates. The current rate is just $40 per hour, which, according to the group, is the lowest in the nation and just $10 more than it was in 1988. AASP-MA Executive Director Evangelo “Lucky” Papageorg said the industry is filled with technicians that started because they thought it was a cool job, one that they learned to love. That passion, he said, does not feed their families though.

by Steven Loveday, InsideEVs

“The problem is that loving and cool don’t pay the bills. We need to be able to pay the bills,” he said. The bills have until June 30 to clear the committee, after which the legislature would have just a month before the end of the session to approve and send them to Gov. Charlie Baker’s desk. Standing in the way, according to former state Sen. Guy Glodis, are insurance companies that want to keep reimbursements low. Glodis said auto body workers first approached him in 2003, saying their wages were so low they couldn’t compete to keep workers from leaving the state. He said the problem was recognized by legislative leadership, who said they would do something about it. “Folks, that was over 20 years ago—nothing has been done,” he said. “We’re here to educate the legislature about the greed and the injustice and the dishonesty of what’s going on with the insurance industry where they are purposely stagnating and suppressing wages. “It hurts business and it hurts families,” he said.

14 JUNE 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

We’re asking Texans to conserve power when they can by setting their thermostats to 78 degrees or above and avoiding the usage of large appliances (such as dishwashers, washers and dryers) during peak hours between 3 p.m. and 8 p.m. through the weekend.” Meanwhile, Tesla became aware of ERCOT’s request, and it sent out an alert to all of its vehicle owners in the state. The simple alert popped up on peoples’ Tesla touch screens making them aware of the grid concerns and advising them to avoid charging during peak times. Electrek received information about the Tesla touch screen notification via Reddit, which was shared by Tesla owner Karlan Mitchell. The notification reads: “A heatwave is expected to impact the grid in Texas over the next few days. The grid operator recommends to avoid charging during peak hours between 3 p.m. and 8 p.m., if possible, to help statewide efforts to manage demand.”

As you are likely aware, Tesla just recently opened a brandnew factory in Austin, TX, CEO Elon Musk has relocated to the area, and the company’s headquarters has officially moved from California to Texas. Texas is also home to SpaceX’s Starbase launch site. Musk has been encouraging people to move to the Austin area and apply to work at Tesla. He’s also suggested builders ramp up efforts to make more housing available. However, most importantly, Tesla has already been working on plans to help Texas with its failing power grid. Thus far, Tesla has started supplying energy storage for Texas to the tune of 81 Megapack commercial batteries. Electrek said Tesla plans to continue in its efforts to help, and it will roll out residential storage and solar systems as well. In fact, the company is already installing solar roofs and Powerall batteries in new home construction projects in Austin.

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Dominion Sure Seal Celebrates its

50th Year Anniversary

For the past five decades, Dominion Sure Seal has been a leading manufacturer of sealants, protective coatings, and adhesives for body shops, car restoration companies, and car dealerships throughout North America. If you ever need reliable and affordable products like undercar coatings, paints, plastic repair systems, anti-corrosion materials, liquid bedliners, adhesives, tapes, and specialty chemicals for your collision repairs or restoration jobs, the brand name Dominion Sure Seal is likely all over your shop. The company’s CEO Greg Morton is proud of his family’s business and honored to have played a major role in the success story at Dominion Sure Seal. “I began working here at age 14, working part-time; sweeping floors and painting walls,” he said. “Initially, we sold directly to body shops and then in 1995, we broke into the market by working with distributors and warehouse wholesalers.

Greg Morton (right) and Managing Director Derek Morton now run the show at Dominion Sure Seal

By knowing what the collision repair industry needs and fulfilling them with new products over the years, we’ve grown here in Canada and in the United States. Now we’re in a lot of major retailers throughout Northern America and the business has doubled within the past 5-6 years.” Greg’s late father Ron started the business in 1972, one year after Greg was born. The company started with five people and now they employ 30, which includes 40 regional reps. The company’s first major victory happened in 1989, when chemists at Dominion Sure Seal unveiled a plastic repair system that quickly became a go-to product for body shops and car Then in 1995, Dominion came out with Gator Guard, an epoxy liquid bedliner that helped the company to create an entire line of epoxy-based products. Today, Dominion Sure Seal sells more that 100 different products to collision repairers, car restorers, and car-crazed individuals (aka do-it-yourselfers)

The late Ron Morton started the Dominion Sure Seal in 1972, built around quality products, great prices, and amazing customer service.

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Another big reason for Dominion’s longevity and success includes its people, Greg said. “My brother Derek is our Managing Director and everyone here feels like they’re a part of our family, which they are. We have people here who have been with us for 15-20 years and that continuity has enabled us to be a market leader.” By carefully monitoring the pulse of the collision repair industry and developing products to improve the lives of body techs, painters, and mechanics, Dominion Sure Seal is looking with confidence at the next 50 years. “People know our name, with 90 percent of our customers coming from the automotive repair industry and the rest from the DIY market,” Morton said. “We’re well-known for quality products, great prices, and customer service and it has definitely paid off. We started with two products now we carry 100 and we’re developing new ones all the time. We know the body shop business from top to bottom and that’s why we create products that will enable collision repair professionals to do a better job, while cutting cycle time and improving the bottom line.”

www.dominionsureseal.com autobodynews.com / JUNE 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS 15


16 JUNE 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com


autobodynews.com / JUNE 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS 17


SCRS Offers Update on Collision Repair Industry Projects; DEG Offers Update by John Yoswick

Research into the accuracy of the blend time formula commonly used in the industry is among the projects the Society of Collision Repair Specialists (SCRS) has on its docket, the association reported at an open board meeting held in April in Oklahoma City. “Many of our members have challenged us that blend times sim-

Aaron Schulenburg said the Society of Collision Repair Specialists (SCRS) is researching the accuracy of the blend time formula commonly used in the industry

ply aren’t realistic,” said Aaron Schulenburg, executive director

of SCRS. “We hear you. We have made a decision to invest in doing more research around that, and to bring answers in a transparent manner back to the industry. “Blending is a very challenging task, that has lots of steps and preparation, and we have long challenged that 50% [of full refinish time] formulas aren’t reflective of what’s actually necessary with the blend task.” Schulenburg said the association also is “close to a solution” in terms of offering a health insurance plan to the industry. “We’ve been talking for a long time about health care [and] are continuing to work on solutions there,” Schulenburg said. “I can’t reiterate this enough: The last thing SCRS wants to do is develop a solution that we don’t believe is going to be for the long-term, and ask the industry to consider it, to switch, to go through the process of doing all that, and end up in a place where a year from now you’re not in a better position than you were.

“That’s been the stumbling block for us in a lot of the solutions we’ve found. I think we’re really close to something, [and] as soon as we know that we can feel confident in putting our name and brand and endorsement behind it, we will.” SCRS board member Michael Bradshaw said the association also

SCRS board member Michael Bradshaw said the association also is continuing to develop weekly “Quick Tip” videos

is continuing to develop weekly “Quick Tip” videos, offering brief information and advice related to technical processes, estimating, negotiation, documentation and business practices.

“They’re great tools for your staff,” Bradshaw said. “And something we’ve seen in our facility: If there’s a friction point on an operation between third-party payers and your staff, these videos can be a really quick and easy tool to send to [the insurer] to help them comprehend what’s going on and why it needs to be done.” He said SCRS also will be creating some videos aimed at vehicle owners. “As shops, we all sometimes struggle to convey an appropriate message to the consumer as to what’s going on with the claims process or why certain things need to be done or why certain things happen in the manner that they do,” Bradshaw said. “So we’re going to shoot videos that are geared toward the consumer. The shops can then use them to educate their consumer base, and hopefully make life a little easier for them.” Also during the meeting, Danny Gredinberg, administrator for the Database Enhancement Gateway

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(DEG), said of about 19,000 inquiries the DEG has received over 15 years regarding missing or potentially inaccurate information in the industry’s estimating guides, more than half—52%—have resulted in a change by the information providers.

Danny Gredinberg said more than half of the inquiries the DEG has received have resulted in a change by one of the estimating system providers

“That’s a pretty alarming number,” Gredinberg said, but also pointed to the value the DEG offers as a free resource to the industry. Although the estimating system providers have long provided a way for anyone in the industry to submit such inquiries directly to

them, the DEG (www.DEGweb.org) was created—and continues to be funded—by a number of shop trade associations, including SCRS, as a centralized and easier way to submit and monitor what happens to such inquiries. Gredinberg said one strength of the DEG is that it is used, and considered credible, by both collision repairers and insurers. “I got an email from a DEG user, contesting a labor time on a replacement rear body panel part,” Gredinberg cited as one example. “He shared with me the email he got back from the actual adjuster. It started out with: ‘Alright, Robert, sorry for the delay, but just got word from on high [that] we’re good to go. They cleared the separate time on the end plate; that DEG form was worth its weight in gold.’” Gredinberg said DEG inquiries recently have helped lead Mitchell International to add wording to its estimating guide about destructive weld testing, and the time and costs of researching OEM repair information being not-included. Similarly, CCC Intelligent Solu-

tions and MOTOR recently updated their estimating guide to add a labor procedure related to front bumper camera and sensor aiming, and what is not-included in the refinish time for a “minor panel” when it is being refinished independently of a major panel. “Recently, I-CAR did a ‘Repairers’ Realm’ with Honda talking about laser brazed roof replacement,” Gredinberg said. “The week after that video got released, a repairer watched it, had a Honda in his shop, and noticed there was no way he could do that roof replacement for the time given. With that video, we were able to show the information provider, and within a couple days, they updated the time, and added some additional footnotes about one-time use parts and additional brackets and bolts that needed to be replaced as well.”

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Repairify Completes Record Scans Repairify, Inc., unveiled key insights from its record 2021 yearend, including that its family of brands completed more than 12.4 million automotive diagnostic scans and delivered more than 4.9 million diagnostic reports across the collision, mechanical, dealership, auction and reconditioning repair markets. The record-setting year marked a watershed moment for Repairify. The company completed five acquisitions and expanded its capabilities beyond collision repair technology into diagnostics for mechanical repairs, data insights for ADAS calibrations and vehicle reconditioning workflow and inspections. Beyond the delivery of a record-setting year, Repairify’s 2021 performance was capped by several strategic investments, multiple industry partnerships and a new exclusive global patent licensing and supply agreement with LAUNCH Tech. Source: Repairify, Inc.

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Average Collision Repair-Related Length of Rental Increases 4.9 Days in Q1 The first quarter of 2022 saw average Length of Rental (LOR) for collision replacement-related rentals increase 4.9 days when compared to 2021. This nearly five-day increase continues the trend of unprecedented industry increases, including an almost four-day increase in the fourth quarter of 2021. While January is a traditional LOR peak time, along with June, historically the numbers tend to decrease in February and March. This stayed true in 2022—but the numbers this year were much higher, with several industrywide issues contributing to these extraordinary results. Overall in the U.S., Q1 2022 LOR was up to 18.2 days, an increase of 4.9 days compared to 13.3 days in Q1 2021. This includes replacement rentals for drivable and non-drivable repairs as well as total loss claims. The state of Washington recorded the highest overall LOR increase of 7.2 days (from 11.8 days to 19.0). Notably, Washington was in the bottom 10 states overall in Q1 2021. Nine other states experienced increases higher than six days, while 28 states plus the District of Columbia recorded increases of more than five days. Hawaii had the lowest increase with 1.5 days, while Nebraska and Iowa had increases of 2.8 and 2.9 days, respectively. Louisiana had the highest overall LOR of 22.3 days while seven additional states had LOR exceeding 20 days. It’s telling that, in Q1 2021, the highest LOR in any state was Louisiana at 16.4 days. One year later, only nine states and the District of Columbia have a lower LOR than Q1 2021’s highest mark. Regionally, no one was immune to these trends. The Southwest, Northwest, Southeast and Mountain states all had LORs of 19 days or more, meaning the drivers of these LOR increases are national issues with deep causal factors, including part delivery delays, shop production capacity and the impact of new technologies such as electric vehicles. With respect to parts, Greg Horn, chief innovation officer for PartsTrader, said: “We saw a record high of the median delivery days for all part types. We measure the median plus two standard deviations to capture the complete picture of all parts needing to be replaced. “What we saw in the first quarter

of this year is a median score of 15.6 days for the outliers,” Horn said. “This is double of the median delivery days, plus two standard deviations, for the outliers that we saw in Q1 2021. As Enterprise has found, no region was immune from these delays; we saw significant increases in all regions in the U.S., with the highest increases in the upper Midwest and East Coast.” John Yoswick, editor of the

weekly CRASH Network newsletter, weighed in on shop production capacity. “The length of rental for the first quarter doesn’t come as much of a surprise based on what we were seeing in terms of the backlog of work at U.S. body shops at the start of the year,” Yoswick said. “Our survey of nearly 500 shops in January found that if you wanted collision work done right away, you likely would have needed to call more than 100 shops before finding one that could start work immediately. The average scheduling backlog jumped to more than a month in January, reaching an average of 4.5 weeks nationally. That is more than a week longer than the record-high Q4 2021 backlog.” According to Yoswick’s research, the Q1 2022 backlog was almost 2.5 times the length of the typical firstquarter backlog. Since 2017, his research shows the average backlog for the first quarter has been just under two weeks. In addition, a record 84% of shops in January said they were scheduling new work two weeks or more into the future, and more than half of all shops (52%) said they were scheduling new work more than four weeks out. “The percentage of shops that might be able to fit you in within a week? Only 3%,” noted Yoswick. “An astonishing 15% of shops are reporting a backlog of more than eight

20 JUNE 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

weeks.” Looking at the data by region, CRASH Network’s data showed the longest backlogs were in the Mid-Atlantic states, where the average was 5.4 weeks. The South was close to that, at 5.3 weeks, and the Midwest was reporting a 4.9-week average backlog. Only one region, the West, reported a backlog of less than three weeks. But with an average of 2.4 weeks there, customers were waiting twice as long as the typical 1.2 weeks reported in that region in prior years. Ten of the 11 regions reported the longest average backlogs since CRASH Network began reporting the statistic in 2017. While still a small factor, the impact of EVs is important to consider. Increased gasoline prices alongside increasing consumer demand have made EVs more popular. EVs are also more difficult to repair due to equipment and safety considerations. Ryan Mandell, director of claims performance for Mitchell International, offered thoughts regarding

full battery electric vehicles (BEVs). “BEVs reached their highestever frequency as they accounted for 1.66% of repairable claims in Q1 2022, compared to 0.42%, 0.74% and 1.01% in the first quarter of 20192021, respectively,” Mandell said. “On average, BEVs are 27.83% more costly to repair than internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles and require an average of 5.76 more labor hours per repair, resulting in longer keys-tokeys cycle times.” Drivable Claims Drivable LOR for replacement rentals was up 4.1 days nationally in the first quarter of 2022 (11.4 days to 15.5 days). The state of Washington had the highest overall increase of 5.6 days, while eight other states had increases greater than five days. An additional 19 states, as well as the District of Columbia, saw increases greater than four days. Oklahoma and Louisiana had the highest overall drivable LOR at 18.9 days, while Hawaii (10.9 days) and North Dakota (11.0) had the lowest.

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Hawaii also had the lowest drivable LOR increase, up 1.2 days, followed by Wyoming, Iowa and Nebraska, all with increases less than two days. Non-Drivable Claims While drivable replacement rental LOR was certainly up, the highest increases were for non-drivable replacement rentals. The first quarter of 2022 was 7.8 days higher than the previous year, at 26.7 days compared to 18.9 days in Q1 2021. Eight states had increases greater than 10 days: Washington at 12.1 days higher, South Carolina at 11.1 days higher, followed by Maryland, Oregon, New Mexico, Louisiana, Oklahoma and Idaho. An additional seven states had increases greater than nine days, while another 14 states and the District of Columbia had increases of eight days or more. The lowest increase was in Massachusetts with 4.1 days higher, followed by New York at 5.1 days, Mississippi at 5.4 days and Hawaii at 5.6 days. For the first time, five states had average non-drivable LOR greater than 30 days: Louisiana, Oklahoma, West Virginia, South Carolina and Oregon. Nine other states were at 29 days or

higher, followed by eight other states at 28 days or more. The District of Columbia came in lowest at 23.1 days, which was still 8.7 days greater than Q1 2021. “Non-drivable frequency in Q1 2022 remained elevated above 20% for the second consecutive quarter (20.22%). The previous years’ first quarter non-drive rates were 18.25%, 19.68% and 18.62% respectively from 2019-2021,” noted Mandell. Total Loss Claims The average LOR for replacement rentals associated with total losses was 18.4 days in Q1 2022, up 4.1 days from Q1 2021’s 14.3 days. While some of this rise may be attributed to the increased severities of collisions, it also could be impacted by higher total loss thresholds and carrier calculations, pushing more vehicles into the repairable category. According to Mandell, this trend is likely to continue. “As actual cash values (ACV) rise, we can expect total loss frequency to decline as more borderline losses are deemed to be more economical to repair,” Mandell said. “This has been the case in the U.S., which saw a

16.1% total loss frequency in Q1 2022, compared to 17.2% in Q1 of 2021. Such a scenario could impact shop capacity, especially in the face of a tight labor market, and drive keys-to-keys cycle times even higher.” The state of Washington had the highest quarter-over-quarter increase with 9.4 days, followed by a 9.1 day increase in Oregon. These two states also accounted for the highest overall total loss LOR. Two other states, Idaho and Rhode Island, and the District of Columbia increased eight days or more. Hawaii had the lowest total loss LOR increase, up 1.2 days, with only Texas and Alabama seeing an increase of 2.9 days or less. The lowest total loss LOR was in Florida—15.1 days, an increase of 3.1 days. Summary The results for the first quarter of this year are eye-opening. There are many factors affecting everyone in the collision industry, including technician staffing, ever-changing parts availabilities, new and used vehicle pricing, inflationary pressures and new claims processes. Traditionally, the second quarter of each calendar year yields the

lowest LOR, but it remains to be seen how these industrywide issues will affect this year’s results. The entire industry will play a part in ensuring all collision-related businesses are aligned, not just to offer procedural solutions, but to ensure our mutual customers receive safe and proper repairs, an excellent experience and peace of mind. Enterprise is committed to partnering with insurers, repairers and suppliers on each one of these issues. Through foundational support provided by the Enterprise Holdings Foundation, Enterprise is spearheading the Collision Engineering Program, in partnership with Ranken Technical College. The program, designed to attract and develop entry-level talent to fill essential roles within the collision repair industry, is piloting at four schools nationwide. For more information, visit www. beacollisionengineer.com. Source: Enterprise

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Ford Recalls Certain 2021 Expeditions and Lincoln Navigators for Potential Fire Concern Ford Motor Company is advising customers of certain 2021 Ford Expedition and Lincoln Navigator SUVs—built over a four-month period between late 2020 and early 2021—to park their vehicles outside and away from structures while Ford investigates the cause of under hood fires. Responding to 16 reported incidents, Ford is recalling 39,013 Expedition and Navigator SUVs in the U.S. built between Dec. 1, 2020, and April 30, 2021. These vehicles may pose a risk of under hood fire, including while the vehicle is parked and off. As of Ford’s filing with NHTSA, there have been no reported incidents with vehicles built before or after these dates. Ford, which began investigating the issue March 24, has not yet established a cause. The incidents are believed to originate in the rear of the engine compartment near the passenger side of the vehicle. Fourteen of these incidents occurred on vehicles owned by rental companies across multiple locations

and two were retail customer vehicles. Of the 16 incidents, 12 reportedly occurred while the vehicle was parked and off, one reportedly while the vehicle was parked and on, and three reportedly while the vehicle was in motion. Ford is treating this recall with a high sense of urgency and will communicate to customers via FordPass and Lincoln Way app and mail as soon as it finalizes the list of owners and addresses within the recalled vehicle population. Ford has not issued instructions to stop driving vehicles under this recall and is not aware of any accidents related to this issue. The company is aware of one reported injury. “We are working around-theclock to determine the root cause of this issue and subsequent remedy so that customers can continue to enjoy using their vehicles,” said Jeffrey Marentic, general manager, Ford Passenger Vehicles. “We recognize the importance of staying in touch with our customers until we resolve this matter.” Source: Ford

22 JUNE 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

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autobodynews.com / JUNE 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS 23


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24 JUNE 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com


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800-234-0875 801-323-0492

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866-733-2861 225-756-6166

800-575-3553 512-401-5976

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888-454-0947 817-809-7762

Murray

800-292-4595 801-263-0202

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Dept. Hours: M-F 7:30-6; Sat 7:30-5 pgoold@mikehale.com

Houston

713-596-2337 713-596-2338

Dept. Hours: M-F 7:30-7; Sat 7:30-4 jlambert@sterlingmccallacura.com

Team Gillman Acura Houston

833-738-3637 281-209-4200

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autobodynews.com / JUNE 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS 25


3M Offering Specialized Products, Training, Support to Collision Repair Shops to Help Drive Profit Efficiencies by Stacey Phillips

Report, one of the tools 3M uses to understand driving behaviors, demonstrating driving has increased 100% in the U.S. and is returning to pre-pandemic levels. “The positive news is that driving trends are moving more toward an endemic phase, and I look forward to seeing an improving business as we go through the course of 2022,” he said.

With the pandemic halting mobility over the last two years and accidents falling sharply, the collision repair industry has been impacted worldwide. As a result, 3M has focused its efforts on offering specialized products, training and support to the collision repair industry to help it be more efficient, productive and profitable in 3M Focused on New Prodthe future, said Dave Gunucts to Help Shops derson, 3M’s president and 3M launched two new solugeneral manager of the Autions during the pandemic to tomotive Aftermarket Divi- Dave Gunderson, assist shops with their productivity and efficiency in sion (AAD). president and Celebrating his 34th general manager of collision repair: the 3M™ year with 3M, the indus- 3M’s Automotive Performance Spray Gun and Aftermarket Division try veteran recently shared the 3M™ Cubitron™ II Net (AAD) major trends in 2022 relatAbrasives. With the current raw materials ed to collision repair and the ways 3M AAD businesses are focusing on shortage, paint companies, like all companies, have had to raise costs. supporting their customers. Gunderson pointed to statis- Gunderson said the industry is starttics from an Apple Mobility Trends ing to think long-term and focus on

The Ford

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with shop productivity and eliminate some of the concerns. “We have been in the indus-

try for a long time and our job is to bring innovation and solutions to problems to the market,” said Gunderson. The lightweight, versatile 3M™ Performance Spray Gun was created as a cost-effective and easy-to-use product for shops. Designed to deliver a consistent and professional paint job every time, 3M’s spray gun has demonstrated positive benefits for shops with the high paint transfer efficiency on repaired parts. Since being introduced to the industry, many customers have realized an average savings of 10% to 20% in paint mix costs. In addition, the paint gun has positive benefits for the environment because fewer solvents are used through the cleaning process. “It’s a win-win-win, and we couldn’t be prouder bringing this innovative product to market,” he said. The company also introduced 3M™ Cubitron II™ Net Abrasives

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during the pandemic. Although net abrasives have been previously used in the industry, Gunderson said the 3M™ Cubitron II™ Net Abrasives use 3M’s patented precision-shaped grain material, which allows the solution to cut twice as fast and last twice as long as other net abrasives families. In addition, it captures more than 97% of the dust created when sanding in a shop. “With a shortage of technicians and competition for labor, employees want a clean, safe environment to work,” said Gunderson. “Our customers understand that dust extraction allows for a much cleaner body shop and paired with long-lasting abrasives, the productivity in sanding can also be met with fewer discs.” Supporting Body Shops Gunderson shared three distinctive ways 3M currently supports body shops: training and education, community and industry engagement, and increasing shop productivity and engagement. With training innovation facilities in more than 40 countries, Gun-

derson said helping educate the next generation of technicians is a priority to 3M. During the pandemic, 3M scaled up the virtual component of its 3M Collision Repair Academy.

and curriculum offerings for aspiring and current technicians. This includes opening an approximately 20,000-square foot training facility in St. Paul, MN. “Our employees could not be more thrilled,” said Gunderson. “Our team loves working with and advancing the collision trade, and having a brand-new facility with the right equipment and full-size classrooms will allow even more shops and technicians access to 3M™ Cubitron II™ Net Abrasives use 3M’s patented the teams of subject matter precision-shaped grain material experts at 3M.” 3M also takes pride in its com“Anyone can go online and get training on proper repair proce- munity and industry engagement dures,” said Gunderson. “That has efforts. For instance, the 3M team been very successful. Last year, we will participate in paint finish competitions at SkillsUSA in June in trained over 40,000 technicians.” Training is also available for Atlanta, GA. The St. Paul-based apvocational-technical schools and in- plication engineering team makes it cludes information about OEM stan- a priority to support bringing technidards and specifications. In addition, cians into the trade. Finally, similar to the medical 3M partners with I-CAR and OEMs to offer customized in-person and industry, Gunderson said collision virtual training. repairers often spend as much time An important goal for 3M in on the administration side of the 2022 is to advance their training business as on the operational side.

The third area of focus is around the support and digital tool integration for body shops. “Our goal is to simplify shops’ day-to-day administrative tasks,” he said. “A lot of materials that are used in repair shops don’t get accounted for on a repair order… some of these are critical, like structural adhesives.” To help shops account for materials, 3M introduced the 3M™ Collision Repair Materials Planner tool, known as CRiMP, about five years ago. The tool enables shops create a repair invoice to account for materials used on an order, reduce supplements and fully account for materials used during a collision repair job. “There are a number of different required materials on a repair order that shops tend to overlook when writing and submitting a repair order,” he said. Gunderson offered the example of using seam sealer on a vehicle. By using CRiMP, it allows a shop to specify how much of the tube was used during the repair and then creates an invoice attached to the repair See 3M Offering, Page 32

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From the Desk of Mike Anderson with Mike Anderson

Mike Anderson is the president and owner of Collision Advice, a consulting company for the auto body/collision repair industry. For nearly 25 years, he was the owner of Wagonwork Collision Center, an OEM-certified, full-service auto body repair facility in Alexandria, VA.

7 Steps to Implementing Improvements Within Your Auto Body Repair Business “I have all these great ideas, but I can’t get my people at the shop to help implement them.” I don’t know if that’s something you’ve found yourself thinking or saying, but I know as a trainer, consultant and 20 Group facilitator, it’s a comment I hear from auto body shop owners frequently. The problem, often, is shop owners may be great entrepreneurs, but not always great leaders. But it’s a skill that can be learned, through practice. Following the same steps over and over again will help you become a leader who can put great ideas into practice. Here’s my seven-step system for implementing something new at your shop. 1. Choose a goal. Odds are, you have multiple ideas you want to try. Don’t get bogged down trying to do it all: Choose one or two to start; you can come back to the others later. 2. Assign specific tasks. Let’s say you want to “5S” (clean and organize) your paint mixing room to make it more efficient. Choose the person or people who can best help you achieve that, and assign them three to five specific tasks: clean the scale, wash and paint the walls, discard unneeded items, standardize where specific items are to be kept. Don’t overwhelm them by giving them too many items on the action list. You can give them more tasks when they finish the first ones.

But remember that your definition of clean and organized may differ from theirs, so either work with them the first time, or give clear, detailed instructions about your expectations. 3. Determine and gather the needed tools, equipment and materi-

Inspire and lead change within your business using a seven-step process, Mike Anderson suggests

als. Are you asking them to stay late or meet you on a Saturday to work on a special project? Then absolutely don’t kill morale by waiting until then before you run to the hardware store for needed supplies. Be prepared. 4. Determine a timeline and set a deadline. Ask your team if they think the timeline you’ve set seems appropriate. An action plan in writing with the steps or tasks involved and deadlines ensures their buy-in. 5. Check in at the midway point. Those who abdicate rather than delegate forget about an assigned task until weeks later when they notice it’s not done. At that point it’s as much your fault as theirs that it

Register for CIECA CONNEX 2022 CIECA announced its 14th annual conference, CONNEX 2022, will be held Sept. 13-14 at the Embassy Suites St. Louis-St. Charles in Missouri. The event will include a full lineup of business and technical speakers, networking opportunities and a vehicle gifting as part of the National Auto Body Council Recycled Rides® program. One of the event’s highlights will be a tour of Hunter Engineering’s ADAS and calibration center.

The theme of the conference this year 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. The day prior to the conference, NABC will be holding the Boone Valley Golf Club Fundraiser in Augusta, MO. The conference agenda will be announced later this spring. Source: CIECA

28 JUNE 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

didn’t get done. One shop I work with agreed they would close out a stack of old repair orders within two weeks. The great thing about electronic calendars are the reminders we can schedule in them. I didn’t wait until two weeks went by to check in with that shop. I called one week later and said, “We’re halfway to the deadline. Are you still on task for finishing up in another week?” 6. Document accomplishments. Keeping lists of successes and “victories”—almost a “yearbook”—will give everyone involved a sense of accomplishment. Any time you’re feeling discouraged, you can look back and see that you’ve worked through challenges and made improvements. Documentation might include checklists and photos as well; once the paint mixing room looks how you want it kept, post some pho-

tos that will remind employees of your expectations for how it is to be maintained. 7. To sustain a change, choose someone to audit compliance. Studies have shown a person has to do something 30 days in a row in order for it to become habit. A frequent audit at first is crucial until something becomes habit, allowing for less frequent auditing later. Part of the challenge of getting employees to help implement change is that we all tend to view change in terms of “What is it going to cost me?” or “What am I going to have to give up?” Your job as a leader is to promote your vision, to help your team see what they gain from the change, to help them view it as improvement rather than just change. That’s making a change with your team rather than to your team.

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autobodynews.com / JUNE 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS 29 4/1/22 1:54 PM


Day Job/Night Job

Ed Attanasio is an automotive journalist based in San Francisco, California. He can be reached at era39@aol.com.

with Ed Attanasio

She Sold Her Auto Body Shop to Become an Artist buy bird seed. Somebody walked In the world of collision repair, the- forward? up to my brother and punched him re are a ton of multi-talented people doing other things when they’re not Lack of education! As cars and he fell and fractured his skull. with Gary Wickert repairing vehicles. are ever-changing with legi- He went into a coma, and three and I would bet the average custo- ons of new technology, it is imperati- a half weeks later, he was gone. The murderer got 18 years—semer does not realize the tech, painter ven years suspended—but or estimator working on their car is a he has been messing up in musician, artist, actor, writer, movie prison, so it looks like he director—even the owner of a champion Frisbee dog! I have enjoyed inwill be in there for a long terviewing thesewith mega-talented intime. My brother was a retiStacey Phillips dividuals since I started this column red doctor and I think about in 2008 when I wrote a story about him every single day. Chris Mashburn, a body tech, and I mainly create abstracts his beloved Frisbee dog, Mindy. in acrylic, and will paint on This story is about Bianca any surface I find interesRauser, who stepped away from the ting. I choose colors based with Stacey Phillips world of collision repair and sold on my mood that day. Raher shop to enjoy life and pursue her rely using brushes, I opt for art. A major tragedy in her life caunon-traditional methods of Bianca Rauser sold her shop to step away from the crazy sed Rauser to fast track her journey, life of collision repair and pursue her passion for making application such as bubble and part of that includes creating art art wrap, cookie cutters, funthat has quickly become a signifinels, plastic grocery bags, cant part of her retirement plan. ve to constantly train to keep up with water bottles, blow torches, marbles, with Stacey Phillips correct procedures. I hated the fact How did you get into the col- that I had to fight with the insurance lision repair industry? companies so that we could make safe, OE repairs. I could see that I was working for an in- quality wasn’t always a priority and surance company, and had it began to become an issue. When to interact withwith body shops a lot. I people’s safety is involved, quality is Stacey Phillips was getting tired of the Evil Empi- not negotiable, in my opinion. re when a shop owner offered me a job. I took it, and I absolutely loved How did you get into creamy position. He taught me how to be ting art? Please describe your an estimator and I loved everything process. about it. with Stacey Phillips Art became an outlet for my What were the most satisfyanger and sorrow after my ing and challenging parts of brother was murdered in a random your role in the industry?

The Legal View

A:

Product and Process Industry Training

Shop Secrets and Strategies

Q: A:

etc. I even used a cat toy the other day to create an interesting texture.

Q: A:

Where do you create the art?

My studio is in a climatecontrolled three-car garage that has exactly enough room for zero cars due to all of my artwork and supplies.

Q: A:

How long does it take to create a piece?

From start to finish, approximately three weeks. I have several art projects going on simultaneously all the time. I am always looking for new and exciting things to create, and that’s why I am doing things like tables, coaster sets, and people seem to like my clocks as well.

Shop Services

Q:

National Events

Q:

A:

A:

Western Associations

There are people out there who aren’t crazy about wowith Victoria Antonelli men working in this industry. It has gotten better, but it still exists. When I could make customers happy after going through the stressful situation of an accident—I loved that part. It has also been rewarding getting to with Victoria Antonelli Bianca Rauser is selling her pieces both know and interact with some of the through major galleries in Arkansas and most knowledgeable people in the nationally industry. act of violence. I was talking to him What are the biggest obstac- on the phone one day, and he told les for the industry moving me that he was going to the store to

Western Events

Q:

30 JUNE 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

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I worked as a cake decorator for 20 years before I got into collision, so I am comfortable using the left side of my brain. It’s so therapeutic—it is amazing. I also do commissions on occasion, usually images on large canvases. If the art is going

Rauser’s art is hanging in body shops throughout the country and gaining top reviews for its use of color and shapes

to be hanging on a wall in a shop, I will sometimes do the image in the company’s colors to tie it in to the whole look.

Continued from Page 27

3M Offering order. “This helps enhance the profitability of the shop,” he said. A second tool he discussed is Performance Analytics, currently being used in about 350 shops, which aims to help shops manage performance. “You can track shop data and determine where you are and aren’t making money and where you are losing or gaining productivity,” he explained. Owners and managers can benchmark performance against industry standards, receive recommendations on areas of improvement, and have access to two-way integration with body shop management systems and real-time tracking. Both of these standalone programs are being integrated into 3M™ RepairStack™ Performance Solutions, a digital suite of products that allows technicians to scan materials being used on the repair order to track inventory and performance analytics in one system.

Q:

Have you had success selling your art through galleries, to friends and/or online?

to hand it off to some really great people, and it’s turned out to be a great decision.

A:

Q: A:

All of the above! My first sales were from me just posting some of my work on my personal Facebook. I am currently in two local galleries—Akib’art and Hidden Talent, both in Fort Smith, AR—and have good experiences at artisan markets. I have a few pieces on my Facebook page, B the Art. Every time I make a sale, it’s so satisfying and fulfilling, it’s like presenting a beautifully repaired vehicle to a customer on a Friday.

Q: A:

Why did you retire from the body shop life?

I had a talented young buyer whom I felt comfortable with taking over what I built. My decision to sell was based upon my frustration with the unethical practices of insurance companies. My original plan was 10 years, but then the murder of my brother altered my perspective and I decided

“We’ve had a very good reaction from the shops using it over the last nine months,” said Gunderson. The Connected Body Shop Digital Solution Looking ahead, Gunderson said 3M will continue to focus and offer customers not only high-value allied products but also a connected and integrated digital solution. This can be done through the 3M™ RepairStack™ Performance Solutions, which aims to simplify order planning and automate delivery from distributors, as well as offer the capability to organize and track the use of both 3M and non3M materials. This digital shop tool is currently in the beta phase and will add functionality with the technology asset acquisition of LeanTec. The goal is to increase the shops participating during the second half of 2022 and industry-wide in 2023. During challenging times, Gunderson said 3M is committed to bringing the best end-to-end innovations to market and providing training opportunities to body shops and aspiring technicians.

32 JUNE 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

What else are you doing during your retirement?

Traveling, cooking, fishing and spending quality time with friends. And of course, making art and hopefully selling art.

Q:

What mediums do you use and are you thinking of using new things to create art?

A:

Mainly I use acrylic on canvas, but I am getting into alcohol inks and pottery as well. I am open-minded to try all sorts of items and products to create a spectacular—or not!—piece of art. I have discovered that art is certainly subjective, and some of my favorite pieces are of little interest to people, while other articles I don’t care for seem to be popular. It “pays” to have a wide variety of exhibits.

AUTOBODY

Register for ASE Certification Spring registration is officially open for more than 50 ASE certification tests covering nearly every aspect of the motor vehicle service and repair industry, said the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE). Those registering by June 30 will have 90 days to schedule an appointment to take the selected ASE tests, whether registering on the first day of the registration period or the last. ASE testing is available throughout the year and is conducted days, nights and weekends at nearly 450 secured, proctored test centers. To register, visit ASE.com, click on register and sign-in. Once logged in, users can next click on “orders” and then “store” where they can find the tests they want to take, add those tests to the cart, check out and registration is complete. Service professionals with unexpired automobile certifications (A1-A9) can use the ASE renewal app for recertification. Source: ASE

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Industry Insight

—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.

with John Yoswick

CIC Committee Looking at How Estimates End Up on Vehicle History Reports

Shop Showcase

The Collision Industry Conference for example, needs the VIN in order (CIC) Data Access, Privacy and Se- to obtain the needed vehicle build curity Committee in April continued data, he said. with Ed Attanasio its ongoing discussion related to “However, if I’m a dealer and auto body shop estimates resulting I’m selling parts, I only need the in entries on vehicle history reports. last eight of the VIN,” Tagliapietra One key point discussed at the said. “What’s really important is CIC held in Oklahoma City: is the VIN being too widely shared within the industry? with Ed Attanasio “The underlying piece for us is there’s no vehicle build data” included in the VIN, committee co-chair Dan Risley said. “A lot of people assume if you have a VIN number, you probably have build data, but that is not the case.” with Ed Attanasio Pete Tagliapietra of DataTouch said many Pete Tagliapietra of Datashops may be unaware of data pumps running Touch shared a slide showing his on their shop’s computer system, extracting view of which entities in the indusdata for a third party try actually need access to the VIN during the repair and claims process, the industry getting to the point of noting “the list with is not Ed that Attanasio long.” A controlling the VIN, making sure company doing vehicle diagnostics, it’s protected and information isn’t

Social Media for Shops

SEMA Show Goes On

shared where it shouldn’t be shared.” Aaron Schulenburg of the Society of Collision Repair Specialists agreed, noting one of the shops that raised this issue nearly faced litigation from a customer who assumed the shop had shared information with a vehicle history reporting company. “He stopped that from happening, because he stopped putting the VINs into repair plans,” Schulenburg said. “He’d put it in, decode the vehicle, pull it out and not have it in there. But that’s not practical.” Sharing the VIN as part of getting parts pricing during the estimating process is one of several theories on how merely writing an estimate on a vehicle can result in about an “incident” entry on a Contact vehicleushisprice matching tory report; the dealersthrough getting that the Mazda Collision Parts information could have agreements Advantage to share that data with CARFAX or Program!

Media and Publicity for Shops

Superior Service Starts with Superior We are Your Source ShopParts. Strategies for Stacey MazdaPhillips Genuine Parts with

others. Tagliapietra said another common way to capture estimate data is if there is a data pump running on a shop’s computer system, extracting data for a third party. “Data pumps have become prolific,” Tagliapietra said. “It’s gotten out of hand, from my point of view, because the data has become so valuable. Most shops probably have a data pump, or more likely multiple data pumps, that are sucking the repair line information and personally identifiable information off of every estimate they write.” At past CIC meetings, CCC Intelligent Solutions has said it does not share data with CARFAX. During April’s meeting in Oklahoma City, Jack Rozint of Mitchell International delivered a similar message. Rozint shared the relatively

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short list of companies that receive access to a VIN through his company’s system during the estimating process. He said no VIN data is shared outside of Mitchell Cloud Estimating unless the user enables third-party integrations or EMS/ BMS outputs, which a user can shut off at any time. “If you use our estimating system in a standard configuration, as most of our users use it, without enabling any of those third-party integrations, we don’t send the data anywhere,” Rozint said. “It’s been brought to my attention there may be other information providers that, in the course of writing an estimate, bounce the VIN off a number of dealerships to get pricing information, and that just writing an estimate in another system may actually share the VIN with multiple parties that you may not even be aware of. “But that does not happen with Mitchell Cloud Estimating,” Rozint said. “If just the act of writing an estimate is causing CARFAX to get the data, I’m guessing the estimate wasn’t done in Mitchell. Now

we do allow our customers to export BMS and EMS [data files] to whomever they choose. They can do that without Mitchell’s involvement. We allow our customers control of our data as they see fit for their business. So there’s things that can happen outside of Mitchell’s control, but that’s in the control of the user.” Trent Tinsley, who co-chairs the CIC committee, said the committee has been having ongoing discussions with several vehicle history reporting companies for months, inviting them to speak, and hopes to have that happen at CIC in July. “What we want to aim for is: can a shop explain to a customer, if they were asked, where their data goes,” Tinsley said. “That is what as a committee we are trying to work toward.” “It’s a huge issue for consumers, and we don’t know how to explain to them how [a vehicle history company] got that information,” New Mexico shop owner Scott Benavidez told the committee. Benavidez owns a collision repair shop and a vehicle inspection company, two separate businesses,

using the same estimating system in both. For the inspection business, his company writes a “reconstructive estimate,” showing what work had previously been done on a used vehicle based on the company’s inspection. At some point he discovered even that reconstructive estimate, with no parts ordered, would trigger a new incident report on a vehicle history report for a vehicle already repaired. Benavidez’s concern is shared widely, based on some polling at the CIC meeting. The committee in 2020 developed a set of five Golden Rules for those entities accessing and using shop estimate data; they can be viewed on the “work products” page on the CIC website, www.ciclink. com. The goal was that by getting companies to agree to abide by the rules, the industry could deter data being used without a shop’s awareness and permission. At CIC in Oklahoma City, attendees were asked if they feel those Golden Rules are being adhered to by the majority of their trading part-

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ners; 68% said no. Among just collision repairers at the meeting, 88% said they did not believe they were in control of their company’s data and how it’s being shared. Schulenburg said he was surprised by that, because while he understands shops’ frustration, he thinks the data-sharing problems may be caused by a relatively few bad players. “As skeptical as I am about the exchange of data, I believe most companies are doing the right thing,” Schulenburg said. “I think most companies doing the right thing are getting a negative implication because there are some companies choosing to make data aggregation an ancillary business model to their core function. “Everybody in this industry should be concerned about that,” Schulenburg said. “It’s impacting the view of the collision repair facility, and impacting the view that collision repairers have of products [in the industry] that exchange data. We should all be really vigilant so we can trust one another with that exchange.”

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Glue Pulling Repair Becoming More Commonly Used in Auto Body Shops by Stacey Phillips

techniques because it does not remove e-coatings and corrosion proFor more than 30 years, collision re- tection applied to the panel by the pair technicians have experimented vehicle manufacturer,” noted White. with glue pulling repair (GPR) tech- “This yields a simpler, cleaner reniques to fix vehicles. pair that can significantly reduce the The tooling and techniques amount of body fillers and/or paint have improved over the years, al- to finish.” lowing an increasing number of auto White is currently receiving inbody shops to adopt GPR in quiries from hundreds of their facilities, according to shops a month interested in Chris White, president of adding GPR to their repair arsenal. KECO Body Repair Prod “Body work has been ucts. done for so long that a lot “Glue pull repair is of guys think there is only rapidly changing how collision repair work is done,” Chris White, pres- one way to fix a dent,” said ident of KECO Body said White. “It is the least Derek Heinrichs, manager Repair Products invasive, best-quality methof City Collision II in Pittsod to repair a dent today.” burgh, PA. After experiencing GPR KECO has more than 50 years first-hand and physically doing it, of experience in plastics. Founded in Heinrichs said they will continue us1963, the company was purchased ing this repair method in their body by White in 2004. Two years later, it shop. doubled in size and has continued to expand over the years. GPR is Not PDR In 2018, KECO opened a GPR Like paintless dent repair (PDR), facility and headquarters for body GPR aims to save as much of the repair products in Oklahoma City, original finish as possible so there’s OK. Today, the team manufactures little to no filling, priming and painttabs, tools and accessories and pro- ing at the end of the repair. In addivides training to dent and collision tion, no stud welding is required. repair technicians. Although GPR is similar to The company’s Level 2 GPR PDR in some ways, White said System was awarded the SEMA “GPR is not PDR.” 2021 New Product of the Year in However, he said, with much Collision & Refinish. more time and skill applied and During the SEMA with many times the use of Show, White teamed up additional PDR push tools, with Gene Fetty, KECO’s the GPR process can be a master technician, to share means to a full PDR. information about GPR GPR is mainly used as and demonstrate KECO’s a tool for conventional dent products. His presentation, repair and enables techni“Glue Pull Repair—Pull to Gene Fetty, KECO’s cians to avoid disturbing Paint, and Beyond,” was master technician or damaging the insulation part of the Society of Colliand sensitive electronics on sion Repair Specialists (SCRS) Re- the reverse side of the panel. pairer Driven Education Series and In addition, he said, technicians recorded for future viewing https:// experience less damage to the clear rde.scrs.com. coat and less distortion of the metWhite explained GPR is a al. This leads to less harmful dust, non-invasive cold straightening repair painting and replacement of panels. technique to pull dents with plastic “We’ve found over and over tabs in various shapes and sizes. The again that panels, particularly alutabs are adhered to a panel’s clear coat minum, that needed to be replaced with specialized hot melt glues and are now repairable,” he said. then pulled with lifting devices. A wide range of metals is com“This method of damage re- patible with GPR, including mild moval offers significant advantag- steel, high-strength steel and most es over traditional collision repair aluminum. However, he encourages 36 JUNE 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

repairers always to check the OEM procedures. The GPR Continuum White encourages technicians to think of GPR in terms of a continuum—something that keeps changing slowly over time. “It is that process that can be used very aggressively to move a lot of metal and also a process that can be used with great finesse and detail to be able to move metal and finesse out to a finer finish,” he said. He shared a graph of a GPR continuum, which includes the types of effort related to the repair, as well as how much filler, glaze, sanding and painting are required. “Where you want to get to on the continuum is really based first and foremost on the economics of the repair,” explained White. The GPR Process Fetty then discussed the GPR process and demonstrated using it on vehicle damage that would have typically needed the panel replaced.

He stressed the importance of following KECO’s “6 Cs” process to have good strong pulls every time. The 6 Cs: 1. Clean: Always start with a clean panel for maximum adhesion. “Most of the time, all you need is 99% strength isopropyl alcohol,” he said. “Do not use paint thinner or other acetone-based products---anything that can attack the plastic.” Using a clean towel, follow up with isopropyl alcohol before using glue and tabs on the panel. The last step is to clean with 99% isopropyl alcohol, the glue’s release agent. 2. Check: This involves checking the temperature of the panel, ambient air, tabs and glue; the size of the dent; the type of metal; and where to start pulling. Fetty said temperature is probably the most overlooked part of a successful repair. “The right temperature will guarantee a strong pull,” he explained. “If the glue is See Glue Pulling Repair, Page 40

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Collision Repair Industry Consultant Won’t Let Health Issues Stop Him by Ed Attanasio

What happens when your body starts to fail you, but your mind is as sharp as ever? Do you quit or do you re-invent yourself? This is a question many people in every industry—including collision repair—have to answer at some point in their careers, but it usually when approaching retirement. Chris Maimone has had to face these life-changing issues at the young age of 38 due to some serious health issues requiring more than 30 surgeries. Many people would have understandably thrown in the towel after experiencing a plethora of medical issues like the ones Maimone has encountered. But he apparently doesn’t know the word “quit,” and instead of stepping aside, he is embracing his new role as an industry consultant focusing primarily on auto body shops. Maimone comes from a body shop business family well-known throughout southern California. He earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from California Lutheran University, and entered the industry began by working at Marco’s Collision Centers, which has seven locations. He’s extremely proud of the fact he played an integral role in the company’s success with a mission passion of improving the collision repair industry from the front office to the paint booth and everywhere in between. Maimone started his career in collision repair from the bottom by washing vehicles, but was learning every facet of operating the shop since day one and progressed quickly, he said. “After a short time, they put me in charge of the San Gabriel shop, where I supervised 50 employees, produced an average daily output of $32,000, generating a 50% gross profit and earned a Customer Service Index (CSI) between 98% and 100%, while keeping all of our DRPs happy,” Maimone said. “I oversaw our production process, which required every department to achieve a successful daily output while keeping our quality standards. This required knowing every vehi-

cle’s in-process and coordinating with each member who came in contact with the car.” The most challenging part of Maimone’s position was checking for quality during every repair, he said. “I am a perfectionist and every-

Chris Maimone has had health issues that might force many people to early retirement, but they only inspired him to work harder and do a better job. Now he works as a consultant for CARSTAR and is exceeding everyone’s expectations with his knowledge and experience

one who works with me knows it,” he said. “If something was not 100% perfect, I sent it back. To be totally transparent, there were many times I wasn’t the most well-loved person at the shop because I often send vehicles back due to quality issues. It was my task to protect the company’s name and reputation, which meant making sure each customer’s car was repaired to absolute perfection. Our goal was to affirm that the vehicle was always repaired ‘Once, Right, the First Time.’” Maimone hasn’t let his health issues get in the way of performing his job at a high level. “I used to think that to be successful it required a perfect presentation of how I appeared and carried myself,” he said. “I went from being a typical 35-year-old to a man who now uses a walker, but this did not define my success. I knew that I was still damn good at what I do, and now there was an unexpected ingredient of inspiration. When people see the diligence and commitment I give them, it inspires them to go the extra mile and commit to change despite my hurdles. Within my field, this is what I’ve always aimed to do.” As a consultant, Maimone loves motivating people to do amazing things, he said. “I’ve been continually drawn to my consultant role solely because I

38 JUNE 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

offer an approach that goes beyond the result of what other consultants may offer,” he said. “My job is to advance the mindset of the entire company from I should make changes to I want to make changes! This means we aren’t looking for a temporary fix but a permanent one. I am only successful if the entire team embraces the change, from the owner to the porter. When the company adopts it, the results will last.” In 2014, Marco’s became the first California acquisition for Service King Collision Centers. “They then chose me to be one of the first members of their Southern California market’s quality assurance team,” Maimone said. “This team started with eight locations and grew to 30 locations within two years. I was meticulous when inspecting each vehicle, like I had at Marco’s, but my most important role was coaching the teammates in embodying the same quality standards.” Maimone was promoted to Service King’s quality assurance team lead for the entire Southern Califor-

nia market within two years. “Many of my days were spent on quality inspections for different locations, which involved one-toone training, group meetings, customized presentations and hosting national calls to help educate the entire team,” he said. “In addition to these, I was on the Pack Board for the Universal Technical Institute from 2016-2018. As an avid advocate for bringing more women into our industry, I also helped one of the UTI students become the first woman accepted into Service King’s technician apprentice program.” Everything changed in 2018 for Maimone. “My body started having problems, and I didn’t know why. The changes were subtle at first---tingling in the legs, numbness in my feet, etc. Then my balance began to suffer, and I had difficulty walking normally. My symptoms quickly advanced, so much so that I had to leave Service King.” He was diagnosed with a tethered spinal cord, meaning he had ex-

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cessive scar tissue wrapped around his spinal cord, essentially suffocating it. “Within two years, I had five spine surgeries and seven brain surgeries,” Maimone said. “I lost all of my feeling from the waist down, yet the amazing thing is that I’m still able to walk with the assistance of a walker. I should be wheelchair-bound, but I continually fight and push my body’s boundaries to where I know they can be. That includes fighting for my capability to get back in the field.” In December 2020, Maimone successfully returned to the workforce, albeit through a different avenue due to his spine issues. He landed a job with CARSTAR. “Coaching and making people better has always been my passion, so I decided consulting would be a perfect fit,” he said. “I was invited to be a motivational speaker at the VeriFacts Symposium within that same month. Figureheads and leaders throughout the collision repair industry were in attendance, and they learned not only my story but also the framework needed to in-

CCC Promotes Janik to SVP CCC Intelligent Solutions Inc. named Scott Janik senior vice president, insurance services group. Janik joined CCC in 2007 and has served as the group vice president of the insurance services group since 2012. In his new role, Janik is responsible for leading strategic growth of the market segment and aligning business priorities to meet customer needs through the technology leader’s advanced cloud-based SaaS platform, which connects 30,000 businesses across the property & casualty ecosystem. Janik succeeds Barrett Callaghan, who was elevated in 2021 to the role of executive vice president, markets and customer success, overseeing engagements across the insurance, automotive and collision repair markets. Before joining CCC, Janik worked in technology and management consulting, first with Accenture, as well as a boutique management consulting firm. Source: CCC

still a higher-than-standard collision company.” Integrating into three locations for CARSTAR and moving through their production areas on a walker seemed like a daunting task at first. “I had just spent the last 24 months battling a condition that could have made me completely paralyzed, and now I am being entrusted again with the task of guiding companies to success,” he said. “What ended up surprising me was how my refusal to let my body stand in the way of my work ethic had prevented my walker from becoming a hindrance. “It was an amazing experience working with the corporate staff, shop management and shop teammates,” Maimone said. “I know the processes we implemented will help increase their capture rate and help them fulfill their long-term goals. Just as how I am determined to walk one day without assistance again, I too am determined to do exactly what I had done for years—make people and companies better.”

AUTOBODY

Coming inin hot: Coming hot: Your next Your next parts order

Continued from Page 36

Glue Pulling Repair too cold, it will crystalize and if it’s too hot, it will prevent proper setup and solidification.” 3. Choose: Based on the facts already known about the type of metal, size of the dent and the end goal will help technicians choose the appropriate lifting tools, tabs, glue and knockdowns. “Most of the time, the repair is going to answer the questions for you,” he said. 4. Coating: If a technician doubts the amount of glue to use when coating the tab, Fetty recommends using extra glue. “It will only slightly affect drying time but will never negatively affect your pull,” he said. “If you are short on glue and it’s not filled edgeto-edge, you will get a bad pull.” 5. Correct: Using controlled pulling techniques to massage the dents out, Fetty advises pulling the lows and knocking down the highs. “Work slow and methodically,” he said.

“Slower is faster and cleaner. Slow and steady wins the race every time.” 6. Continue: By repeating the process, Fetty said big dents are ultimately reduced to smaller ones. “Continue until the panel is ready for filler and the panel is restored without painting,” he said. Another consideration is lighting. “Correct lighting is very important,” said Fetty. “You can’t fix what you can’t see.” The goal, according to Fetty, is to be able to see the dead center or deepest point of the dent with the light parallel to the surface being fixed while the technician’s eyes are perpendicular. “It seems the momentum is building day by day for GPR,” said White. “We are seeing many OEMs showing interest in GPR over the last 12 months. We have literally had them tell us, ‘We don’t want to put filler in our cars anymore.’” For more information, visit https:// keco.com/ or https://www.youtube. com/c/KECOBodyRepairProducts.

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Biden Administration Announces $3B Plan for U.S.-Based EV Battery Manufacturing by Joey Klender, Teslarati

The Biden Administration made a massive push toward the eventual domestication of the electric vehicle supply chain in the U.S. on May 2, announcing it will launch a $3.16 billion plan to boost U.S.-based EV battery manufacturing. Electric vehicle manufacturing has boosted globally, but the U.S. is working toward making more parts of the supply chain available domestically. As the Russian war against Ukraine launched earlier this year, material prices skyrocketed, causing many automakers to increase prices. Additionally, supply chain bottlenecks have been prevalent in the automotive industry, among others, as a whole since the COVID-19 pandemic began. Parts and materials coming from overseas are taking extended periods to make it to the U.S., pushing the need for domestic parts manufacturing. Finally, the Biden administration announced May 2 it would push money toward this initiative. The funding will support grants to

build and develop battery and battery component manufacturing within the U.S. Funded by President Joe Biden’s $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure law, the grants will help

and 600,000 cars and trucks within the federal fleet will be EVs by 2035. The U.S. is adopting EVs at the third-best rate globally, trailing only China and Europe. However, just 4% of vehicles purchased last year were

“These made-in-America batteries are going to help reduce emissions and create opportunities across the country.” — Gina McCarthy bring more battery manufacturing efforts to the country, boosting manufacturing efficiency and providing more jobs in the sector. “These made-in-America batteries are going to help reduce emissions and create opportunities across the country,” White House National Climate Advisor Gina McCarthy said May 2 in a call with reporters, CNBC said. The government has also committed to EVs with specific goals for the sector and internal targets to replace a considerable number of vehicles within its fleet with electric powertrains. Fifty percent of all vehicle sales should be electric by 2030,

electric, according to Canalys, a market research firm. “Positioning the United States front and center in meeting the growing demand for advanced batteries is how we boost our competitiveness and electrify our transportation system,” said U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm. “President Biden’s historic investment in battery production and recycling will give our domestic supply chain the jolt it needs to become more secure and less reliant on other nations— strengthening our clean energy economy, creating good-paying jobs and decarbonizing the transportation sector.”

I-CAR Now IACET Accredited I-CAR announced April 4 it has been awarded accreditation by the International Accreditors for Continuing Education and Training (IACET.) I-CAR is now the first organization within the collision repair inter-industry to achieve this rigorous accreditation following a proven, universal model for developing effective and valuable continuing education and training programs across nine IACET-recognized educational programming excellence categories. As an IACET accredited provider, I-CAR offers IACET CEUs for its learning events that comply with the ANSI/IACET Continuing Education and Training Standard. IACET accreditation demonstrates the I-CAR team’s ongoing dedication to continuous improvement and supports the organization’s goal to serve the inter-industry through collaborative solutions grounded in quality, excellence and transparency. Source: I-CAR

Fisker PEAR to Be Produced in Foxconn’s Ohio Plant

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Fisker Inc. confirmed it will produce its second vehicle, the Fisker PEAR, at the factory Foxconn recently bought from Lordstown Motors Corp. in Lordstown, OH. The Fisker PEAR will enter production in 2024. Both the Fisker and Foxconn teams are fully engaged and expect to build a minimum of 250,000 Fisker PEAR units a year at the plant after a ramp up period. “The PEAR will be a revolutionary electric vehicle that won’t fit into any existing segment. The exterior design will feature new lighting technology and a wraparound front windscreen inspired by a glider plane glass canopy, enhancing frontal vision,” Fisker Chairman and CEO Henrik Fisker said, adding that he plans to visit the factory with a team of engineers on May 13. “Our engineering group is working on new features and high-tech solutions for the PEAR that will change how we use and enjoy a vehicle in the

city,” Fisker said. The Fisker PEAR follows the company’s first vehicle, the Fisker Ocean, which will start production in Austria on Nov. 17.

The Fisker PEAR will have an expected base price below $29,900 before incentives. Fisker has designed and engineered the vehicle to reduce parts for rapid, simplified manufacturing. The Fisker PEAR will be built on a new proprietary architecture. This new platform will underpin two additional models that Fisker will introduce at a later date. Source: Fisker Inc.

autobodynews.com / JUNE 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS 41


New Estimates Show Traffic Fatalities Reached a 16-Year High in 2021 The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has released its early estimate of traffic fatalities for 2021— projecting an estimated 42,915 people died in motor vehicle traffic crashes last year, a 10.5% increase from the 38,824 fatalities in 2020. The projection is the highest number of fatalities since 2005 and the largest annual percentage increase in the Fatality Analysis Reporting System’s history. Behind each of these numbers is a life tragically lost, and a family left behind. “We face a crisis on America’s roadways that we must address together,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg. “With our National Roadway Safety Strategy and the president’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, we are taking critical steps to help reverse this devastating trend and save lives on our roadways.” The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law places a strong emphasis on improving safety and includes the new Safe Streets and Roads for All program, which just opened its first round of applications. The program, the first of its kind, invests up to $6 billion over five years to fund local efforts to reduce roadway crashes and fatalities.

The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law now being implemented also advances Complete Streets policies and standards; requires updates to the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices, which defines speeds, lane markings, traffic lights and more on most roads in the country; and sharply increases funding for the Highway Safety Improvement Program, which helps states adopt data-driven approaches to making roads safer. “This crisis on our roads is urgent and preventable,” said Dr. Steven Cliff, NHTSA’s deputy administrator. “We will redouble our safety efforts, and we need everyone—state and local governments, safety advocates, automakers and drivers—to join us. All of our lives depend on it.” NHTSA launched the Click It or Ticket campaign, which coincides with special enforcement efforts to raise awareness about the fact that seat belts save lives, and launched a technical assistance program that will assist states in aggressively addressing a continued rise in fatalities. NHTSA released $740 million in funding for the 402 State and Community Grant Program, Section 405 National Priority Safety Program and

Section 1906 Racial Profiling Data Collection Grants. States are encouraged to use the funding to implement programs to address gaps and opportunities identified during the technical assistance effort, expand partnerships and focus on risky driving as well as safety concerns among vulnerable road users and overrepresented populations. The full-year estimate of 2021 traffic fatalities also provides a look at state-level estimates during the pandemic. As in 2020, all 10 NHTSA regions are estimated to see increases in fatalities. Forty-four states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico are all projected to have had an increase in traffic deaths, as compared to 2020. Preliminary data reported by the Federal Highway Administration show vehicle miles traveled in 2021 increased by about 325 billion miles, or about 11.2%, as compared to 2020. Data estimates show the fatality rate for 2021 was 1.33 fatalities per 100 million VMT, marginally down from 1.34 fatalities in 2020. While the fatality rate continued to rise in the first quarter, it declined in the other three quarters of 2021, compared to 2020. Additionally, the traffic fatalities

in the following categories showed relatively large increases in 2021, as compared to 2020: • Fatalities in multi-vehicle crashes up 16% • Fatalities on urban roads up 16% • Fatalities among drivers 65 and older up 14% • Pedestrian fatalities up 13% • Fatalities in crashes involving at least one large truck up 13% • Daytime fatalities up 11% • Motorcyclist fatalities up 9% • Bicyclist fatalities up 5% • Fatalities in speeding-related crashes up 5% • Fatalities in police-reported, alcohol-involvement crashes up 5% To read more about the U.S. Department of Transportation’s comprehensive National Roadway Safety Strategy, which adopts the safe system approach and builds multiple layers of protection with safer roads, safer people, safer vehicles, safer speeds and better post-crash care, click here. To learn more about the Safe Streets for All program, which is currently accepting applications for Fiscal Year 2022, click here. Source: NHTSA

CCC Launches Integration with asTech

Cox Automotive Forecast: No Relief in Sight as Slow New-Vehicle Sales Persist in April

CCC Intelligent Solutions on March 31 announced asTech®, a Repairify company and a leader in diagnostic, calibration and programming solutions, has joined the CCC® Diagnostics network. The integration makes it easier for repair facilities to capture and document scan information in CCC ONE® workfiles. This streamlined service is available now via CCC ONE. The integration does not require a physical connection between the asTech device and CCC ONE. Information is uploaded wirelessly and the scan report is automatically attached to the vehicle’s CCC ONE workfile. Activation is simple. Repair facilities using CCC ONE select their preferred diagnostic provider(s) from those available through CCC’s network and providers send scan data directly to the workfile.

When automakers report sales the first week of May, there will be little talk of spring growth. The seasonally adjusted annual rate or (SAAR) upsells is forecast by Cox Automotive to be near 14.3 million, up from last month’s 13.3 million pace. However, this monthover-month sales-pace gain is from seasonal adjustment factors, not volume increases.

Source: CCC Intelligent Solutions

had a spring bounce to remember. April 2021 was one of the best-selling months in the U.S. market since the Great Recession, as the SAAR reached a pace of 18.3 million. Optimism around vaccines, coupled with $1,400 stimulus checks, led to a demand surge. However, inventory at dealerships across the country could not be replaced at previous production

“We expect production volumes to improve in the second half of the year, but fulfilling existing orders may not allow dealer inventory to accumulate in any noticeable way.” — Charlie Chesbrough April sales volume is forecast to fall 1.7% from March, despite having the same number of selling days. After nearly a year, limited supplies of cars and trucks on dealer lots across the country continue to hamper new-vehicle sales. Year over year, sales volume is forecast to drop nearly 20%. Last year, the U.S. auto market

42 JUNE 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

levels due to COVID-created supply chain issues, and supply was drawn down quickly. The market has been operating with tight inventories ever since. Cox Automotive Senior Economist Charlie Chesbrough explained: “The situation on the ground has not changed significantly for months. Product availabili-

ty remains constrained, and many customers can only order their vehicles for future delivery. Improved inventory conditions will likely not happen in 2022 as many customers are now waiting for their already reserved vehicles to be built. We expect production volumes to improve in the second half of the year, but fulfilling existing orders may not allow dealer inventory to accumulate in any noticeable way.” April 2022 New-Vehicle Sales Forecast Highlights • New-vehicle sales are expected to fall nearly 20% from April 2021 and fall 1.7% from last month. • The SAAR in April 2022 is estimated to be 14.3 million, below last year’s 18.3 million level, but up from March’s 13.3 million pace. • All segments will see significant year-over-year decreases with the compact car segment dropping the most at 40.3% and the mid-size SUV/crossover segment dropping the least at 15.1%. Source: Cox Automotive


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1Collision, Auto Techcelerators Partner 1Collision and Auto Techcelerators, LLC have announced a partnership where Auto Techcelerators will provide consulting, software, mobile apps and training to help 1Collision affiliate locations open and operate ADAS service and calibration businesses. 1Collision affiliates will now have access to advice, training, software, mobile apps and other solutions that will help them launch and operate a profitable ADAS services and calibration business in their local markets. The agreement provides support for site identification and preparation, equipment selection, software and mobile apps that identify ADAS systems, components and required calibrations to managing their calibration businesses and documenting, invoicing and validating all aspects of the calibration process. Source: 1Collision

Collision Repair Industry Trailblazer Sheila Loftus Dies at 79 Sheila Loftus, an innovator who led collision repair publications and associations, passed away May 11. She was 79. An inimitable businesswoman, a beloved mother, grandmother and friend, and a voracious, enthusiastic lifelong learner, Loftus died of complications from a stroke at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital, in New York City, with her family by her Sheila Loftus side. Born Oct. 18, 1942, Loftus graduated from Shaw High School and Baldwin Wallace College (now University), then began her career as a public school math and science teacher in Cleveland, OH. After a move with her family to Washington, D.C., she worked at a daycare center and did freelance photography before becoming a trailblazer in the collision repair industry as a successful, innovative and influential woman in a male-dominated field. For more than 30 years, Lof-

tus was the editor and publisher of the D.C.-based trade magazine Hammer and Dolly and the executive director of the Washington Metropolitan Auto Body Association (WMABA). In addition, she founded the CRASH Network, a weekly publication of industry news, and co-founded the Women’s Industry Network (WIN). In 1996, she was inducted into the collision repair industry’s version of the Hall of Fame, the Hall of Eagles. Loftus’s impact was international in scope. Hammer and Dolly had subscribers around the world, and she reported on industry exhibitions, technologies and controversies in Australia, Japan, Taiwan and half a dozen other countries. But she also wrote about local events and personalities. “Body Man of the Month” and “Women at Work” features appeared in each month’s Hammer and Dolly.

While Loftus was intent on providing the men and women in the collision repair industry with information they could use to succeed— and to protect their health—she also liked to make her readers laugh. Hammer and Dolly’s “Whoopie Car” issue, in which people in the industry ranked the best cars for sex (and reminisced, in G-rated fashion, about their backseat exploits), was a big hit. So was the annual swimsuit issue. At once a parody and a tribute to Sports Illustrated’s famous nonsports issue, Hammer and Dolly’s version made a model of anyone in the industry brave enough to pose next to a car, truck, van or motorcycle in a swimsuit and a smile. After Loftus retired from the collision repair industry in 2008, she bought an apartment in New York City’s Washington Heights neighborhood below where her daughter, son-in-law and two grandsons lived. Known far and wide as “Grandma She-She,” she befriended (or so it seemed) half of Manhattan. Source: The Cleveland Plain Dealer

asTech, Driven Brands Partner to Deliver Diagnostics, Calibrations, Programming asTech, a Repairify company, on May 11 announced a partnership with Driven Brands to establish a formal scanning diagnostics program that enables its network of automotive collision repair centers to access the full suite of asTech solutions for the highest quality and precision repairs. “We have experienced significant growth in a highly fragmented automotive services market segment, so we look to partner with best-in-class suppliers, who can support our large-scale franchise family,” said Arlo Johnson, SVP of claims services for collision, Driven Brands. “This helps us continue delivering high quality, safe repairs, on time, to our valued customers across the network.” Driven Brands, the parent company of some of North America’s leading automotive collision service businesses such as ABRA, CARSTAR, Fix Auto USA and more, has access to the complete asTech portfolio of offerings. These offerings include as-

Tech’s signature remote OEM diagnostic scanning, OEM-compatible local scanning, adasThink OEM-sourced calibration insights, instructions and intelligence, remote ADAS calibrations and electronic repair events and programming. “As automobiles become more complex, gaining access to a comprehensive set of quality tools, technology and vehicle data is a top item on the checklist for every repair business we speak to,” said Cris Hollingsworth, president of Repairify Holdings, parent company of asTech. “asTech is ecstatic to serve Driven Brands, and we look forward to delivering the tools and expertise required to help repair technicians complete a safe, quality repair every time.” The Driven Brand diagnostics offering powered by asTech is now available. Facilities can inquire by contacting asTech at info@astech. com. Source: Driven Brands, asTech

44 JUNE 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

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Consumer Skepticism Toward Autonomous Driving Features Justified In AAA’s latest survey of attitudes about automated vehicles, drivers overwhelmingly want automakers to improve the performance of existing driver support features rather than develop self-driving cars. This desire is backed by another round of AAA testing that reveals inconsistent performance remains a problem with available driving assistance systems, resulting in crashes with a car and a bicyclist. The failures occurred regardless of vehicle make and model. It is the third time AAA has studied these systems’ performance. AAA urges automakers to listen to consumers and improve what is currently available before focusing on future technology. “You can’t sell consumers on the future if they don’t trust the present,” said Greg Brannon, director of AAA’s automotive engineering. “And drivers tell us they expect their current driving assistance technology to perform safely all the time. But unfortunately, our testing demonstrates spotty performance is the norm rather than the exception.” Consumers surveyed told AAA

they are more interested in improved vehicle safety systems (77%) versus self-driving cars (18%). But new testing, the third round by AAA’s Automotive Engineering team in the last few years, found vehicles with an active driving assistance system—also known as Level 2 systems as defined by SAE—failed to consistently avoid crashes with another car or bicycle during 15 test runs. A foam car similar to a small hatchback and a bicyclist dummy was used for this testing. A head-on collision occurred during all 15 test runs for an oncoming vehicle within the travel lane. Only one test vehicle significantly reduced speed before a crash on each run. For a slow lead vehicle moving in the same direction in the lane ahead, no collisions occurred among 15 test runs. For a cyclist crossing the travel lane of the test vehicle, a collision occurred for five out of 15 test runs, or 33% of the time. For a cyclist traveling in the same direction in the lane ahead of the test vehicle, no collisions occurred among 15 test runs.

While the refinement of available active driving assistance systems improves, drivers must remain continuously engaged in the driving task. The research vehicles performed as expected during the closed-course testing for routine situations, such as approaching a slowing moving vehicle or bicyclist from behind. However, all test vehicles collided with either the simulated passenger car or the adult cyclist multiple times during “edge-case” testing, like a car approaching head-on or a bicyclist crossing directly in front of the test car. This reinforces recent AAA research calling for direct driver monitoring systems with camera-based technology to be integrated into active driving assistance systems. “While it may be encouraging that these driving systems successfully spotted slow-moving cars and bicyclists in the same lane, the failure to spot a crossing bike rider or an oncoming vehicle is alarming,” said Brannon. “A head-on crash is the deadliest kind, and these systems should be optimized for the situations where they can help the most.” Active driving assistance systems

are widely available and often called semi-autonomous because they combine vehicle acceleration with braking and steering. Since 2016, AAA has surveyed consumers about driving assistance systems and self-driving cars to track sentiment regarding emerging vehicle technology. Key survey findings demonstrate that while consumer interest in driving assistance vehicle technology remains steady, there is more interest in familiar features that consumers perceive to be designed for their safety, such as automatic emergency braking. Meanwhile, consumer distrust of fully self-driving vehicles remains high. AAA found 85% are fearful or unsure of self-driving technology, a level that has remained steady for the past several years. When transporting their children or loved ones, 85% also said they would not be comfortable with using a self-driving vehicle. A troubling belief in commercially available self-driving cars was also revealed in the data, with 12% incorrectly thinking they could buy such a vehicle while 53% were unsure if they could. Source: AAA

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Leadership of the Automotive Recyclers Association (ARA) met with the International Precious Metals Institute (IPMI) and the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI) on May 5 in Washington, D.C. The associations discussed how the epidemic of catalytic converter thefts across the U.S. is having a negative impact on the public and their respective membership. At the meeting, ARA President Marty Hollingshead, of Northlake Auto Recyclers in Hammond, IN, emphasized “professional automotive recyclers do not generally purchase detached catalytic converters but purchase entire vehicles with catalytic converters still attached. Additionally, automotive recyclers are required by federal law to report every vehicle they acquire into the National Motor Vehicle Title Information System.” For several years, automotive recyclers have fallen prey to catalytic converter thieves who break into their facilities and steal cata-

lytic converters from vehicles. Catalytic converter theft has put negative pressure on the industry’s business model because automotive recyclers are purchasing vehicles with the expectation that a catalytic converter will be present on a vehicle only to discover it in fact has been stolen and removed. Over the past two years, ARA has been committed to working alongside law enforcement to help combat motor vehicle theft and catalytic converter theft. Additionally, the associations discussed the lifecycle of a catalytic converter and began identifying points in the chain of commerce where stolen catalytic converters are most likely to be laundered into legitimate business streams. The parties presently agree it would be beneficial to continue conversations regarding catalytic converter theft with the hope each group can reach a better understanding and agreement with one other. Source: ARA

autobodynews.com / JUNE 2022 AUTOBODY NEWS 45


Farmers Insurance Wins NABC Award

Volkswagen Bringing Back Scout Brand with Electric Truck, SUV by Maria Merano, Teslarati

The National Auto Body Council (NABC) President’s Award is designed to honor the NABC member company that supports the vision of the NABC through donation of its time and resources. For 2021, the NABC President’s Award was presented to Farmers Insurance, selected by a vote of the NABC Board members. The Farmers Insurance nomination received overwhelming support from the NABC Board based on Farmers strong commitment to the NABC. Throughout 2021, Farmers Insurance assisted with the gifting of nearly 30 NABC Recycled Rides vehicles, and provided its staff with the time and resources to act as chairman of the NABC Fundraising committee and support NABC activities. In addition to presenting Farmers with the NABC Presidents Award, the NABC will make contributions to two organizations in the recipient’s honor— one selected by NABC and one by Farmers. Source: NABC

On May 11, Volkswagen Group’s Supervisory Board confirmed the company’s plans to launch an all-electric pickup truck and rugged SUV for the U.S. market. VW plans to produce the electric pickup truck and rugged SUV under the Scout brand, which it obtained in 2021 when Traton Group—one of Volkswagen Group’s commercial vehicle subsidaries—purchased Navistar, formerly known as International Harvester. Volkswagen aims to start production on Scout’s EV products by 2026. The Scout brand will help VW break into the electric vehicle market in the U.S. “After Volkswagen’s successful turnaround in the U.S., we are now taking the opportunity to further strengthen our position in one of the most significant growth markets for EVs,” said Herbert Diess, CEO of Volkswagen AG. “Electrification provides a historic opportunity to enter the highly-attractive pickup and R-SUV segment as a

Group, underscoring our ambition to become a relevant player in the U.S. market.” The European automaker aims to achieve 10% market share in North America by 2030, with a focus on battery electric vehicles (BEV).

Volkswagen announced on Twitter it is bringing back the Scout brand with an all-electric truck and SUV. Credit: VW/Twitter

VW also announced a $1.7 billion commitment to boost its battery-electric vehicle lineup, R&D and manufacturing in North America. The U.S. is central to its expansion plans. Volkswagen plans to build a dedicated battery cell production factory in the U.S. “Success in the SUV & pick-

up segment is key for further profitable growth in the U.S. And now we have a unique opportunity for market entry,” said Arno Antlitz, CFO of Volkswagen Group. “The size of the full-size segment gives us the opportunity to achieve higher unit sales with a small number of models. This offers additional return opportunities.” Volkswagen will face fierce competition in the EV pickup truck and SUV market in the U.S. from legacy automakers and EV startups alike. Ford seems serious about dominating the electric pickup truck market with the Ford F-150 Lightning and other upcoming products. Rivian will be another of VW’s contenders in the EV pickup truck and SUV market. Then there is Tesla, which will start Cybertruck production next year. Tesla CEO Elon Musk believes Volkswagen has made the most progress out of all its competitors in the EV market, acknowledging the work VW put into developing electric vehicles and entering the market during his recent interview with Financial Times.

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