Body and Paint

What Should I Know About NSX Body Repair?

See Dealer and Service Reviews for recommendations and cautions about specific shops.

Small Dents and Dings

[AT] For small dents and door dings the Dent Doctor type deals are your best bet.

[SC] I attempted the paintless body repair with great results. I used the company Dent Pro local in San Jose, California. The repair was done at my home in approximately 5 minutes. The person used a couple of repair tools to push on the inside of the door panel from the drain hole at the bottom of the door. After he was done, I was amazed that the ding was no longer visible.

[RR – 99/2/3] I have personally seen ASTOUNDING results from the work of one of these "paintless dent removal" services (not sure which one did the work). This was a fairly noticeable dent (crease) in an NSX front fender. It was literally undetectable after they finished! If the dent is such that they say they can do the job, it’s definitely worth the releatively low prices they charge to give it a try.

Serious Body Work

Aluminum repair can be done but it must be by a shop who has experience doing aluminum, and they are few and far between. Don’t accept any shop who hasn’t got a track record in doing this kind of work. Most will just scrape off the old paint, fill it with Bondo, paint it with the wrong primer, and then try to match the paint. That won’t work in the long run, and you should be thinking for the long run. If you keep the car, you don’t want that Bondo to start cracking and breaking loose from the aluminum because the wrong techniques were used.

Many people recommend simply replacing an entire damaged panel, since all body panels except the roof are bolted onto the main chasis structure. This method means no cutting, Bondoing, sanding, or similar problems.

[Florian] Keep in mind, that you shouldn’t work on the aluminium with anything which has been in contact with iron or steel, as this will put small particles of iron in the aluminium, causing contact corrosion. This is obviously a good question to ask to your local repair shop too.

[GC] In selecting repair shops, look for the following aspects:

  1. ICAR certified techs
  3. Paint manufacturer's certified painter, i.e., PPG,Dupont,Silkens, etc.
  5. Laser beam frame measuring systems (for unibody/frame measures).

These are the first requirements to knowing if the repair facility is up to date and certified in the most basic requirements. There are many other areas that can be addressed as well but, for the time being, let’s begin here.

What Shops Are Acura-Authorized?

Automotive Enterprise (Auto Body)

 Belmont CA
 They're Acura approved for bodywork on NSXs.

What Are The Legalities In Fixing A Car?

  1. You are entitled to be “made whole” after the accident. Your car should be returned to at least as good as pre-accident condition. Even if your car is perfectly repaired, just the fact that your car has been in an accident causes a loss in its value, and you are entitled to compensation for that loss.
  3. Insurance companies naturally want to minimize their costs, and so they often try to save money by paying less than required to return your car to pre-accident condition. Many insurance companies attempt to place you in a shop which has made special concessions with the insurance company – e.g., a “preferred provider.” This creates a conflict of interest for the shop as to whose interest is served. Since they may deal with the insurance customer many times a week while dealing with the car owner only once, they tend to view the insurance company as their customer. Thus they may try to save money for the insurance company at the expense of the car owner. THE INSURANCE COMPANY CANNOT REQUIRE YOU TO GO TO A PARTICULAR SHOP.
  5. Some insurance companies want you to visit their drive-in claims center for an appraisal before having your car repaired. Remember that this is only a preliminary surface assessment. In most cases, the insurance company’s appraisal for repair costs is about 65-80% of the actual repair costs. Differences in repair estimates are common. A lower estimate may include sub-standard materials and omit some necessary repair procedures. You may get a better deal if you let the collision repair shop of your choice help negotiate your claim with the insurance company. You are not required by law to obtain more than one estimate or appraisal.
  7. Watch out for sub-standard parts. New, original equipment manufactured (OEM) parts are best. In particular, watch out for non-OEM [after-market] parts, because these may be inferior in quality, fit, and even safety: only 3% of after market parts meet the present CAPA certification. It is also likely that they will try to replace your original OEM parts with used parts of OEM origin. Such parts vary in quality.  “LKQ” is supposed to mean “like kind and quality,” meaning as good or better than the parts replaced, but it is often used by insurance companies to refer to used and non-OEM parts.
  9. Some things to look for in a repair shop:
  • Unibody frame repair machine / measuring equipment
  • MIG welders
  • Dust-free paint environment (spray booth)
  • Certificates of participation in professional and fraternal oganizations, and certificates from training courses
  • Written warranty. Minimums: paint 3-5 years; workmanship 1 yea
  • Neat, clean, organized, helpful, friendly
  • Regardless of which shop you choose, you might want to file a claim for diminished value when the repair is completed, and mention this fact to the shop. Thus the shop will know that the repair work will be quality checked.