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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Greetings to all,


I just wanted to get everyone's opinion on using the Nissan dealership vs. a local body shop in regards to painting and installing a new OEM front bumper on my Z. I know that in past posts, we have all eluded to how the dealership would be more expensive...that is just the reality of the situation. I called the dealer yesterday and was given an estimate to order, paint, and install a new bumper at $675. I called the local Maaco collision center and was given a $600 estimate. Are Maaco Collision centers reliable? The person I talked to on the phone guaranteed that the paint would match and that the part would be an OEM part, but I didnt know if anyone would be able to verify their services.

I also called a local body shop, Twin Cities Collision Center (which is in Lafayette, IN) and was given another $670 estimate. Should I use a dealership or the local Maaco/bodyshop? I definitely do not want to compromise the look or finish of my car, so I might just pay whatever the dealer asks...but I'm not looking to get swindled either. Let me know what you all think. Any suggestions are welcome.
 

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DO NOT GO TO MACCO! They are pathetic. A complete waste of time and money. Dealerships usually are all about the money. They usually take short cuts. I would rather you go to an independant shop. I work in a very high end and a very high quality body shop. I had a few minutes so I wrote a quick estimate on your car. I come up with a cost of $869.82. That is to repalce your bumper install, and refinish it. You'll also have to repace the Nissan Emblum. Look for Flex Additive in the estimate too. You'll need that for bumpers. It makes the paint more flexable. I also have install on front lisc plate barcket. NOt sure you have one on. I dont have one and I wouldnt be suprised if you dont either. There should also be some extra Masking time or Two Tone for the black grille in the bumper. Its all one piece. Do your self a favor, PLEASE DO NOT GO TO MACCO. But from what I see I think the estimates are way short. I think if i were you I'd go look for a high end shop. It may cost more, but do your Z a favor. ITs a lot better in the long run. Oh and you can't write an estimate on the phone. Go see a body shop in person. Its best to see what kind of shop you are dealing with too.
 

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OMG! Don't use Maaco! I'd rather paint the **** car myself than use them.

Go to a more reputable body shop to get another estimate. Nothing wrong with going through a dealer, though. Sometimes they contract out, and other times they do it inhouse if they're big enough.

And forget the emblem. Go for the clean, shaven look. :wink:
 

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The problem with the emblum in the bumper is that the cover is Embossed. Meaning that there is a big indent for the emblum. I think you may want to put the emblum in.
 

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Don't go to Maaco or the dealership. Go to a good bodyshop in your area. Someone ran into me back in jan 04, nissan had her for 6 weeks and didn't even match the paint. They shuffled hubby out the door really quick, and when he got home I freaked b/c she didn't match.....had swirl marks all over her too. 2 more weeks and they finally got the color right....

note the difference between hood/front bumper

 

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Don't go to to MAACO. Ask around about local repair shops. Go see the paint booths. Do the same with your dealer.
 

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Embl "E"m's sorry ha! :doh: . Also the kinds of paints they use make a difference. I'd say the best ones out there now as far as everyday use would Be Sikkens Auto Base Plus, Spies Hecker, and glasurit. I like Sikkens myself though. Some shops use brand name base coats and aftermarket clear coat to cut cost. Thats a really bad thing by the way. Ask around. The more money they spend on their paint brand the better the paint will be, and the more they care about there finished product
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks for the advice everyone. Maaco was definitely not my first choice after I talked with another represenative. It just doesnt add up that their estimate is almost $100 less than everyone elses. What gives?


I called a local body shop yesterday and their estimate was about $670....I am going over there and to the dealer this weekend to compare prices, shops, work, etc. I hope to get my Z in prime time condition soon. Thanks for all of the input.

One more thing....is there anything specific I should look for in a contract, as in paint match guarantees, warrenties, etc.? I've never had to replace anything of this magnitude, so I apologize if I sound like a rookie, but any advice would be much appreciated.

In the mean time...I just pulled my Z out of storeage...we got some good weather, so I had to. Man, does this car feel great to drive after a while or what?! I was on the West coast for a few weeks and drove around my dad's SC430....it's a great car, but the differences between my car and his are large. Why does it seem like the V8 VVTI engines take so long to go through the revs? Anyways, having the Z back is great. I love her!
 

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I'd definitely trust a reputable independant shop before i'd go to the dealer. and I would rather drive around in primer paint than use maaco :biggrin: I had my rear bumper repainted by an independant shop for a good price and they did a great job.
 
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