Shopping For A New Vehicle? How Aluminum Parts Will Affect Future Repairs

If you're in the market for a new vehicle, you are likely faced with dozens of choices within your budget. While of course transmissions, door configurations, and horsepower are all considerations, the material your car or truck is made from can be important too, especially if you need to have body repairs down the line. Read on to learn why.

Why Automotive Makers Use Aluminum

Using aluminum in car bodies isn't a new phenomenon, although it does seem like it's becoming more common. Sometimes car makers will add aluminum here and there, like on a hood, to reduce the weight of a car. This can help it qualify for a different emissions category.

Luxury sports car manufacturers have also been using aluminum in larger quantities for a while. They want their cars to be as light and fast as possible.

How Repair Shops Handle Luxury Vehicles  

Specialty repair shops have been dealing with aluminum body parts long enough that they have developed their own unique system for working with them. Because the machinery that repairs aluminum is more expensive than that needed for other metal, like steel, and the work itself is more skilled, most of these repair shops bypass insurance reimbursement and only deal in out-of-pocket payments, knowing that the insurance companies aren't likely to cover their costs.

These repair places wager that if you can afford a six-figure price tag on a car, you can afford to pay to have it repaired without backup from an insurance carrier. If you're thinking about buying a luxury vehicle made largely of aluminum, know that you may have to shoulder the expense of some repairs yourself. Your insurance can pick up things like a totaled or stolen vehicle or coverage when you hit someone else.

Why Some Pickup Trucks Are Affected

A popular make and model of pickup truck has been shifting to using more aluminum in their vehicles of late too. Until all dealers or regular mechanics are trained in how to work with aluminum in body repairs and have the equipment to do so, you may have to shop around for a repair station if you need work on one of these trucks.

You could seek out a body shop that deals in more luxury makes, as mentioned above, but just like if you have a prestige vehicle, you may have to pay out of pocket. Also, because these shops are so few and far between in many areas, be prepared for long waits to get your vehicle worked on.

The advantage to these trucks is you can save considerably on fuel with the lighter weight offered by aluminum. If you are considering purchasing a vehicle with a high percentage of aluminum in the body, your best bet is to ask the dealer about qualified repair options in your area.

If aluminum catches on outside the luxury market, chances are more body shops will be able to work with it, and insurance companies will be forced to cover the entire charge. And remember: your savings in gasoline could easily outweigh any out-of-pocket payments. Contact a company like Exoticar Paintworks Inc for more information.