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The Unfinished Car

An new vehicle that is delivered with a primer coat so it is easier to customize!
  [vote for,

Sometimes people want a new car painted in a custom color not available from the factory. So I figured why not make "Unfinished" or "Primer" an available color on cars. For rust protection purposes, the metal parts on the inside of the car, in the trunk, the undercarriage, and every where else not seen could be painted a neutral color like a dark grey and the entire exterior is primered and ready for paint. That would give the custom shops a good solid starting point.

I was thinking of this the other day when I was watching one of those auto shop shows on the Discovery channel where they took a 2007 Tahoe that was so new, the sticker was still on the window. They dissassembed the interior of this truck down to the bare metal floor and stripped all of the paint off of the exterior. I sat there the whole time thinking to myself, WHY? (And here I go with a WIBNI statement) It Would Have Been Nice If.. they could have bought the truck unpainted with some cheap vinal seats and a rubber floor (like they have in cargo vans) with no radio or any other accessories that they ripped out, trashed, and replaced with their custom stuff.

Maybe these other ideas are not very practical but I would like to see the ability to purchase a new car that is unpainted and complete with pre-cut masking templates so the hobbyist or auto enthusiast can attempt to paint his own car.

Jscotty, Jan 12 2007


       Trouble is, so much stuff has to be fitted after the top paint coat. Sure, you can mask round it, but you're never going to get as good a result.
angel, Jan 12 2007

       Where is the advantage to the manufacturer?
Galbinus_Caeli, Jan 12 2007

       The advantage to the manufacturer is saving a couple of steps in the manufacturing process: painting, curing, topcoat and curing.   

       I don't care for it, but I like the range of factory colors even less, so here's a matte-black bun for you.
elhigh, Jan 16 2007

       The advantage to the manufacturer is that he can charge more money as this particular type of vehicle will be more sought after. As for the parts that get fitted after paint (which is about 90% of everything that goes on the car) should get top coated with the dark grey (as mentioned in the original description) even if it cannot be painted with precision to the exact spot that the part will be in.
Jscotty, Jan 16 2007

       Surely a better idea would be 'They'll paint it whatever colour you want for a bit more money'??
britboy, Jan 17 2007

       [britboy] Porsche do that.
hippo, Jan 17 2007

       You could pay them more for the color you want but some stuff you can only do yourself simply because you know exactly how you want it- Like if you want a 2-tone fade effect or a particular design where the only way that you can get what you are looking for is to actually be there while they are doing it.
Jscotty, Jan 17 2007

       OK -- I'll buy that.   


       (ps. Apparently Rolls Royce offer to buy back their cars that have been modded in a way that looks shite -- they are so concerned about the name 'Rolls Royce' being always associated with high-end rather then 'Crappy spray paint job some 18 year old loser botched up on'.)
britboy, Jan 17 2007

       You can almost do this now with most vehicles that are regularly customized including most police cruisers, Large trucks and most Pickup trucks and vans. These can be ordered without specific components(IE School bus and fire engine chassis don't come with bodies and only a minimal cab) In most cases it is considerably cheaper for the manufacturer to make a vehicle with all its options rather than without Also I doubt you will find a body shop complaining about painting a new car with its factory baked finish in pristine condition. A little sanding and you have a near perfect base to work off of.   

       //The advantage to the manufacturer is saving a couple of steps in the manufacturing process: painting, curing, topcoat and curing.//   

       There is no advantage in this, the manufacturing process is an assembly line type process, to not paint a car means that it must be pulled out of the normal flow in order to bypass the paint steps, same with the manufacturing steps, this costs more rather than less.   

       //The advantage to the manufacturer is that he can charge more money as this particular type of vehicle will be more sought after//   

       Why in the world would you think that. They might get 5 orders for these and every one would cost them a ton of money and time to produce and they would potentially be left with a car that they can not sell if the order falls through.   

       Taking a cars interior out or body parts off is just part of the job(and really doesnt take long, say a few hours for the interior and maybe a day for the whole car). NO body shop is going to simply spray paint on a Chassis prepped by someone else. thats a quick route to out-of-businessville. I would posit that the additional cost of producing this unfinished car would be greater than the cost of buying a plain jane production version of the car and stripping it down.   

       I think the idea is kind of pointless.
jhomrighaus, Jan 17 2007

       This is a more-than-fine idea.   

       As for those parts that only go on after body painting is done, such as door handles, mirrors, trim, gaskets - good paint shops take those off before painting anyway, and then mask off the window openings so that they actually spray all of the exposed or potentially-exposed bodywork, then they just reinstall those parts.   

       If it's a real concern, just stuff those parts in a box and ship the car with them separate-like.   

       And why have multiple seats? A driver's seat is all you need to get the car to the bodyshop. That, mirrors, a seatbelt, and lights make it street-legal, and everything else is quite literally filler.
shapu, Jan 17 2007

       Jhomrighaus, you make some very good points.. all of which are very valid- however don't forget one thing- this is HALF BAKERY! Pointless ideas is what we come up with here even though some of them are so probable that its sometimes scary.   

       // If it's a real concern, just stuff those parts in a box and ship the car with them separate-like. // Shapu, what you say is a good idea but even though this might make it easier, the car still has to be complete enough for the consumer to drive it off the lot. As a side note- during the 70's to the mid 80's, when Cadillac would sell their commercial chassis vehicles for the hearse, ambulance, or limo, what you got was steering wheel, dash, driver's seat, and a semi-complete body from the A-pillar forward. Everything else from the door handles to the logos and taillights came in boxes so that as the rest of the car was fabricated by the coach builder, they could incorporate the other elements in order to make it resemble a production Cadillac.
Jscotty, Jan 17 2007


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