Some recent controversy about who is a BMW certified training center and why, prompted us to look into exactly what the requirements are for dealerships to gain certification. There are no “authorized” repair centers and only dealerships can become BMW Certified Collision Repair Center (CCRC). At present there are only 69 CCRCs in the US, and only nine in California.
The entity that owns the BMW Center must be the same entity and must have the same level of ownership in the applicable collision repair facility.
The Automotive Service Association (ASA) testified before the Ways and Means Commission in Austin, Texas, June 5, regarding what it feels is an inequity in the current Texas Franchise Tax code.
Denise Caspersen, ASA’s Collision Division manager; Charles Parker, executive director of ASA-Texas; John Firm, AAM, president of ASA-Texas and owner of Firm Automotive in Fort Worth; and John Miller, owner of Freedom Automotive in Stafford, were all present at the hearing. ASA members from Texas who testified included Vince Oliva, owner of Vin’s Paint and Body Mid Co. Inc. in Nederland, and Vin’s Paint and Body Inc. in Beaumont; Johnny Bang, owner of Johnny Bangs and Bumps Shop Inc. in Tomball; and Danny Sullivan, owner of Sullivan Advanced Auto Care in Kingwood.
If passed, House Bill 429 and its companion, Senate Bill 476, would allow automotive repair shops to be taxed the same amount that dealers, parts stores and tire stores are now taxed.
“The independently owned automotive repair and collision businesses in Texas are being denied equal treatment under the law,” said Parker. “Automotive repair and collision shops owned and operated by new or used car dealerships are taxed at half the rate used to tax the independently owned businesses doing identical work. This is justified in the tax code by classifying dealership sales as ‘retail’ and allowing their service and repair business to be included under that banner.
“Furthermore, repair shops operated by tire companies (NTW, Firestone, Goodyear), parts stores (Pep Boys) and mass-merchandisers (Sears, Wal-Mart, Target) are also charged at half the rate paid by independent repair shops. We should not be taxed at a rate different than a business performing an identical service. We should not be denied the true cost of our product by disallowing our skilled labor.”
Added Caspersen, “We were very pleased with the number of ASA members who took time away from their businesses to attend the hearing and demonstrate how important it is to change the current franchise tax law in Texas. We ask other shop owners in Texas to take the time to contact their legislators asking them to support ASA’s efforts.”
Mitchell honored collision repair facilities from throughout the U.S. and Canada with the 10th annual AutocheX(TM) Premier Achiever Awards, hosted "virtually" for the first time on the exclusive Premier Achiever Award website. The Premier Achiever Awards recognize top-performing auto body repair shops throughout the U.S. and Canada, celebrating exceptional customer service and satisfaction achievements.
The class of 2011 Premier Achievers includes top-performing collision repair facilities of all sizes across the U.S. and Canada. In an industry of nearly 50,000 North American shops, these winning shops qualified among the 400 exclusive Premier Achiever Award recipients. Since the award program was launched in 2002, AutocheX has presented over 3,000 Premier Achiever Awards to industry-leading collision repair facilities. The award is based on customer satisfaction scores as measured by AutocheX, either independently or as part of an insurance-sponsored repair program. This year, participating insurance programs included seven of the top 25 carriers in North America.
With the exception of a hot automotive industry, job growth in Alabama’s hard-hit manufacturing sector trails most other states as the anemic economic recovery struggles to take hold, economists said recently.
While Alabama had 239,400 manufacturing jobs in March, the highest level since October 2009, it remains far below the pre-recession peak of 297,800 in January 2007, figures from the Alabama Department of Industrial Relations show. Factory jobs fell by 100 last month to 239,300.
Diana Gauthier, Parts Manager for Stew Hansen Dodge Ram Chrysler Jeep in Urbandale, Iowa, wrote an open letter intended for all collision repairers in the state of Iowa.
All who may be questioning our intent can rest at ease. Stew Hansen Dodge Ram Chrysler Jeep will not participate in PartsTrader.
The National Auto Body Council (NABC) announced it has received board approval to help Operation Comfort’s Automotivation program secure a new facility in which it can continue to help disabled U.S. service members and their families through the instruction and practice of proper collision repair.
Located in San Antonio, Texas, Operation Comfort complements the rehabilitation efforts carried out by the U.S. Army at the Brooke Army Medical Center (BAMC). As a form of occupational therapy, the organization runs the Automotivation program through which disabled veterans, in many cases those that have lost one or more limbs, are rehabilitated through automotive-related activities such as rebuilding and restoring cars, trucks, and motorcycles.
It is difficult for most of us to imagine leading a productive life without a car at our immediate disposal, yet the United States Bureau of Transportation estimates that over 15 million Americans have difficulty getting the transportation they need.
This fact illustrates a great need for something most of us take for granted, and for this reason, the National Auto Body Council (NABC) is pleased to announce that the lives of two deserving Florida families were changed forever during the CCC Industry Conference which took place on May 17 at the Sawgrass Marriott in Jacksonville, Florida.
The families received the gift of reliable transportation through Recycled Rides®, a national initiative through which National Auto Body Council members—men and women putting their superior craftsmanship to benevolent use—refurbish donated vehicles and gift them to families in need and organizations dedicated to assisting others.
The Canton Nissan plant in Mississippi began making the Altima back in 2004, and now its employees will work on the new, fifth-generation model, as the 2013 model year car has begun rolling off the line.
The Canton plant, which also builds body-on-frame trucks, has put full priority on the 2013 Altima, building it in three shifts.
The new 2013 model year midsize sedan is actually based on the old model’s platform, but it has been heavily restyled and modified.
The base 2013 Altima comes with a 2.5-liter 182hp inline-four, starting at $21,500 and the top-of-the line model gets a 3.5-liter V6, in SL trim, it will grab just over $30,000.
“Today’s successful start of production of the Nissan Altima, our top-selling vehicle, only can happen because of the support of our dedicated workforce in Canton,” said Bill Krueger, vice chairman, Nissan Americas. “The Canton team builds among the highest-quality vehicles in the industry, and we are looking forward to bringing their production expertise to the next generation of this award-winning car.”
Honda is adding the Acura MDX sport utility to the production lineup in Alabama next year, and the move will open up a new export market for the Lincoln plant’s products.
Some of the MDX vehicles made at the plant will be shipped to China, said Tom Shoupe, head of Honda’s Alabama operations.
A small percentage of the plant’s vehicles, now Odyssey minivans, Pilot SUVs and Ridgeline pickups, are exported each year to markets including the Middle East, South America and Central America. Pilots are also shipped to Russia.
The MDX, now produced at a Honda plant in Canada, has been exported to China for several years in small numbers, so that will continue after the production switch. Last year, 485 MDX vehicles were shipped to China, Honda spokesman Ed Miller said.
The SUV is sold in the United States. The MDX move will give Honda more room in Canada to build the popular CR-V SUV. Acura is Honda’s luxury vehicle division, and the MDX will be the first Acura product built in Alabama.
The Boyd Group Inc. announced June 4 the opening of a collision repair center in Orlando, Florida which commenced operations on May 30, 2012 as well as the acquisition of another new location in Jessup, Maryland on May 25, 2012.
Both repair centers will operate under the Gerber Collision & Glass trade name. This brings the total number of U.S. locations in operation to 141 with two additional locations acquired, soon to be in operation.
The new Orlando repair center, originally acquired on March 22, 2012 and previously known as Leading Edge Collision, is approximately 10,000 square feet in size, with 6,500 square feet of production space.
Florida is a market Gerber first entered in January, and this latest center bolsters the number of locations operating in this market to nine locations. Orlando, the fifth largest city in Florida, is considered an attractive market by the company.
The new Jessup repair center, the eighth in Maryland, was previously known as ACI Auto Collision and is approximately 13,000 square feet in size, of which 11,000 square feet is production space.