Local news stories affecting the auto body industry in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, and Wisconsin
General Motors will invest $44.5 million to build a Logistics Optimization Center at its Lansing, Michigan Grand River Assembly Plant, creating 200 jobs.
The automaker said its investment will be used to build a 400,000-square-foot building adjacent to the plant to sequence and assemble parts to make manufacturing more flexible. The 2.5 million square foot, 111-acre, Lansing Grand River plant, which employees 1,541 workers, is home of the Cadillac ATS.
Andy’s Auto Body of Alton, IL, held its inaugural car show on May 26.
Mark Anderson, the owner of Andy’s Auto Body, said the show’s proceeds will go to River Bend Head Start.
Lee Davidson, of Peoria, was one of about 80 entrants in the show with his 1930 Ford Model A, with a 1987 Chevrolet Corvette 350-cubic-inch engine, The Telegraph reported. Davidson said the top was chopped down about two inches, the motor was worked over quite a bit, and an original Model A body was built onto a custom chassis.
“It keeps me out of trouble,” he said, noting that the project took him about three years to complete. He found it in an old barn and bought it. The fenders were in such bad shape he had to order Fiberglas replacements, but the rest of the body is original.
The show was at Alton Square Mall, just behind Andy’s, which moved to the former Sears Tire and Auto and expanded its services to more than just bodywork. The shop now offers a full line of automotive services.
CARSTAR Auto Body Repair Experts opened a new shop location in Elmhurst, IL, near Chicago. CARSTAR’s newest location, International CARSTAR Body Shop, is independently owned by Bob and Bill Kopulus and managed by John Asplund. They have been in business more than 40 years. “We are excited to see Bob and Bill Kopulus join the CARSTAR network,” said David Byers, CEO of CARSTAR, which operates more than 410 collision repair locations throughout 32 U.S. states and 10 Canadian provinces.
The second annual Dave’s Autobody Gator Run, a mile fun walk/run, the Go Outside and Play 5K and the Galesburg Half Marathon Express will start and finish at the corner of South Kellogg St. and East Simmons St. on Sunday.
“It looks pretty good. This weather could have hurt us some with signups this week, but runners are anxious and excited to get out and run. With the extended outlook, we should be OK,” said Dave Dunn, owner of Dave’s Autobody and co-owner of Master’s Education Services, who is serving as the marketing coordinator.
Receiving proper paint material reimbursements from insurance carriers continues to be a challenge to the collision repair industry and Michigan is no different.
Since hurricanes Katrina and Rita, the collision repair industry has never caught up to the increases that were incurred during this time period. Add in the challenges the industry faces when attempting to itemize and properly be reimbursed for the feather, prime and block labor operations necessary for a repaired panel and they absorb even additional costs. We have been battling this for years and the solution is quite simple—shops have to use the tools that are available in the marketplace, that means the paint material calculators and insurance carriers have to be cognizant of real costs!
Compare paint materials to parts pricing: When have you ever known a repair facility to have to wait 12, 18 or 24 months for a parts price increase (PPI), all the time hoping that next month they will get the PPI that was owed? Paint material increases are not any different!
1Collision Network announced that Community Auto Body in Carol Stream, IL, is the newest member of the Midwest group of independently owned collision repair businesses.
Community Auto Body owner Ed Zuniga said, “In looking for a group of shops to affiliate with, I chose the 1Collision Network because they offered practical and affordable solutions to the marketing and operating aspects of my business.”
The 1Collision Network includes 21 locations throughout Illinois, Wisconsin and Iowa.
Keith Shellhouse, 46, owner of Independent Autobody in Shelby, OH, was convicted May 7 of aggravated theft, a third-degree felony, and theft of a motor vehicle, a fourth-degree felony, at the Richland County Courthouse. Shellhouse was arrested on April 11, 2012, under more than a dozen customer complaints from as far back as 2002, claiming that customers were swindled out of nearly $300,000 in payments for the restoration of their hot rods. Shellhouse will be sentenced on May 20.
Gary Bishop, a Richland County assistant prosecutor, was one of several victims who reported losing thousands of dollars to Independent Autobody owner Keith Shellhouse.
Collex Collision Experts recently opened its Technical Training Center in Sterling Heights, MI. All new Collex employees, including managers, estimators, parts specialists, customer-service representatives and detailers, will be trained at the 9,000-square-foot facility.
Church Brothers Collision Repair in Indianapolis recently teamed up with the Indiana Pacers, the NBA’s Central Division champions, to benefit a local community center with a $5,000 donation.