Car of the Week

Week ending 30th Sept 2006

We valet hundreds of cars every year, and take thousands of photos, most of these photos get filed away never to be seen again. But some cars are worthy of comment if not an article, maybe because we were asked to do something unusual with the car, maybe because we did a lot of work on the car, or maybe it's just because the car was nice! It's an excuse to show of our photos either way!

Buffer Marks

Black Porsche with Swirl Marks

Not so much 'car of the week' as photo of the week! This was a rather old Porsche and the paintwork was pretty hard. Mark buffed it with a lambs wool mop... at which point we needed to move the car, and as we moved it into the sunshine (there wasn't a lot of sun last week!) the true extent of the buffer marks were revealed.

You will be relieved to know that this is NOT the final stage in the process and once Mark has gone over the car with softer pads and finer compound and polish, these marks will be removed to leave a totally glass like finish.


It seems that I was right to feature this particular car, as it has turned into a real star!

Confession time... again! I have said it before, with a good camera and the right natural light, you can make ANY car look good. I do have a good camera and the light in the early evening was perfect, so these photos did come out pretty good. However, this car is a good few years old and we were not able to get it perfect - this discussion came up this week when a customer said that he had heard that we can make a car look better than new - this is rarely the case I'm afraid. What we have said is that we can make a car shinier than new, and I think this car is an example of that. When a car comes out of the factory with a fresh coat of paint, you have to bare in mind that the paint has never been polished - it has splattered on from the spray gun and seen under a microscope it would actually look very rough. In the case of this car, we were not able to remove all the scratches left by years of washing, and if you looked very, very, very carefully, the paint had actually faded in places and was slightly grey... however we did make the car very shiny! This isn't always such a good thing as it can make imperfections show up all the more, but on this car I think we got the car to a condition where the overall look was quite impressive.

In return for a discount on the paintwork correction, this customer had a valuation done before and after to prove the quantify of the work. This car had a number of things going for it - it's a Porsche Turbo - still a highly desirable car, it was in fairly good condition and it was a good colour. However, the colour worked against it because as everybody knows, 'Black is murder to keep looking good', and this car really did look tatty on the outside. The other thing that was working against it is the fact that it is left-hand-drive.

Me? I'd never buy a left-hooker, and many people feel the same way which narrows the market. But the Porsche Turbo is a very sought after car and a lot of people might overlook the fact if the car was right - but this car wasn't. It's doubtful you would get much of a price for a car that was LHD and scruffy! By the time Mark had finished with this car, it was stunning and even I'd be tempted - so Peter Lansdell estimated that we added £2k-£3k to the value!

But making it look good still doesn't change the fact that the car has the steering wheel on the wrong side and this is a drawback, unless...
Down here in the South East there are a lot of Doctors, Dentists, Architects who come from Belgium, Holland, Germany etc. And of course there are quite a few English people who commute from France. So if somebody is after a weekend car and they just happen to spend their weekends on the continent, you may be able to get the same kind of price that you would if this car was RHD. You shouldn't rely on getting a quick sale, but if you did hold out for the right buyer, then you may get further couple of thousand!

Above: The reflection of the Web-Stig taking a photo of Mark, and a Police mobile speed camera unit in the
background (the red van).

So, under the right circumstances, and if you hold out for the right buyer, this car could be worth as much as £5000 more than when it came in! The customer, even without his £200 discount would have spent less than £800 - which isn't a bad return on the money. This is what we have been trying to prove by having the last 10 cars that Mark has worked on valued, and although they haven't all been quite as successful as this one, I believe that we have well and truly shown the value of paintwork correction and proved that it is more than just a luxury service for enthusiasts.

For the enthusiasts that do read this site - Mark started off using a whole new load of Gear from 3M, but decided he wasn't getting on with it, so switched to Allbrite's AllPad System, starting with a Wool pad and working through various foam pads. Final polishing was done with a SmartTool (Cyclo). He used a variety of compounds and polishes from Allbrite (EHD & 1020), AutoSmart (R3), 3M (Perfect-it) and he also experimented with Tue, 10 October, 2006 Every car is different an requires a different approach - the more products you have, the more options you have. However, for the moment you will not find us using popular products like Meguiar's or Menzerna, simply because of the issue of availability. All our supply needs are currently taken care of when white vans show up at our place, they check our stock and if we are low of anything, they replace it and send us the bill. Otherwise members of our staff are able to make a phone call and get what they need next day... although buying online has become easier, when running a business you still need systems for ordering, the more simple the better - making credit car payments online, printing our orders etc is never simple!


Week Ending 9th April 2011 - Chevrolet Corvette Z06
Week Ending 18th September 2010 - Aston-Martin DBS
Week Ending 27th July 2010 - Audi R8 and BMW M5
3rd July 2010 - Porsche for sale
2nd July 2010 - Ferrari 355
Week Ending 11th June 2010 - Aston-Matin V12
Week Ending 7th May 2010 - Lexus SC430
Week Ending 23rd April 2010 - Saab 9000 Aero
Week Ending 16th April 2010 - Escort Cosworth
Sometime in 2009 - Audi
Sometime in 2009 - Mercedes
Week Ending 4th September 2009 - Jeep - Lease Return
Week Ending 2nd June 2009 - Porsche 993 Turbo
Week Ending 22nd May 2009 - Porsche
Week Ending 4th April 2009 - Maserati Grand Turismo S
Week Ending 7th July 2008 - Ferrari 360 Challenge Stradale
Week Ending 27th June 2008 - Panther DeVille
Week Ending 19th May 2007 - Puzzle
Week Ending 2nd December 2006 - BMW Paint Correction
Week Ending 11th November 2006 - Italian Job Mini
Week Ending 28th October 2006 - Nissan Skyline
Week Ending 21st October 2006 - Mighty Mini
Week Ending 14th October 2006 - BMW Z4
Week Ending 7th October 2006 - Mazda MX5
Week Ending 30th September 2006 - Porsche Paint Correction
Week Ending 23rd September 2006 - Mazda MX5
Week Ending 15th September 2006 - Porsche Boxter


This page was last updated on Tue, 3 November, 2009
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