Talkin’ Shop in Cincy - BodyShop Business

Talkin’ Shop in Cincy

They sure do eat well in Cincinnati.

During my and Managing Editor Mike Peltier’s daylong visit to Elite Collision Service in Cincinnati last month, it was pecan squares the size of fuel doors for breakfast, Papa John’s pizza for lunch and, for a mid-afternoon snack, “cheese coneys” from Gold Star Chili. General Manager Phil Mosley said the cheese coneys were from a client and Gold Star Chili franchisee who traded them for the installation of designer gas pedal and brake pedal covers. Obviously, Mosley knows a good barter when he sees one.

In between gorging ourselves silly, Mike and I learned a lot about painting, sanding, frame straightening and other collision repair procedures by assisting the real pros who perform those duties every day. We also learned a little bit about Elite Collision Service itself and how it truly takes quality and craftsmanship to heart.

“We subscribe to the German philosophy of the way the car is built,” said Mosley. “The car is designed to be repaired, and when it’s repaired as designed to be, it performs and functions as it did originally.”

Mosley said his shop also takes a lot of pride in doing everything possible to make its repairs invisible. He cited one example of a Mercedes station wagon his shop repaired that belonged to a woman whose son-in-law was a mechanic. Just for kicks, the son-in-law took apart the car after the repair and, to his amazement, absolutely couldn’t tell where or how it was repaired.

“A lot of insurers say this isn’t a cosmetic panel or it’s a non-appearance panel so no one sees it, or it gets covered with trim so we don’t care if you don’t straighten it properly,” Mosley said. “But we want it so that if you have to take off the trim, you won’t be able to tell that we’ve been there. The last thing I want is someone to see it and say to the car owner, ‘Goldang, what happened to your car?’”

Quite the opposite kind of job arrived at Mosley’s shop that day. The owner had come in complaining that, ever since taking it in for work at another shop, the alarm would go off and doors would open randomly. As we inspected the car, it became apparent that this was no possessed vehicle from a Stephen King novel but rather the victim of an improperly installed rear windshield. The glass wasn’t even in contact with the urethane on the upper left corner, and water had leaked in directly onto the vehicle’s rear computer components and ruined a Sirius radio antenna. The shop the customer had originally taken his car to was a DRP shop. Elite Collision Service, however, has no DRPs.

“The DRP philosophy doesn’t mesh with ours,” said Mosley. “We do have one carrier asking us to join its DRP to handle its exotics – Ferrari, Lotus, Rolls – and we really want to do it because this particular carrier’s approach to repairs is consistent with our model. The deal breaker for us is the indemnification clause, which is present in all DRP agreements. It would require us to indemnify the insurance company against all harm and perils, and our garagekeeper’s liability carrier just didn’t sign up for that risk. If our garagekeeper’s liability carrier found out that we had agreed to indemnify another insurance company in a DRP agreement, it would drop our coverage completely. So even if we manage to find a good fit in a DRP relationship, we just can’t do it at the risk of exposing ourselves to unnecessary liability.”

That sort of thinking is shared by other members of the US Alliance of Collision Professionals (USACP), a new association headquartered in Cincinnati. As president, Mosley leads the group in aggressively educating consumers on their rights as insureds, claimants and policyholders, as well as on technical issues. He emphasizes the group is open to all.

“The ‘US’ in our name stands in part for ‘all of us,’” said Mosley. “So, although our membership is primarily based in Ohio, if someone from another state can benefit from membership, we would welcome them.”

Mosley hopes this invitation will further advance industry unity, the lack of which he says is “profound” right now but getting better.

“I’m glad to see a groundswell of movement in that direction, but I think it needs to be nurtured so it grows. Overcoming our lack of knowledge of our rights and our lack of unity is one way we can address the interference going on.”     

E-mail comments to [email protected]

You May Also Like

Sticker Shock at the SEMA Show

This year’s SEMA Show held a new surprise for me — a secret drop-off at our booth in the form of a mysterious sticker.

There are always surprises at the SEMA Show, which is one reason why it’s such a special event. New faces to meet, old faces that you haven’t seen in a long time with which to reunite, new technological wonders … the list goes on and on.

This year held a new surprise for me, however — a secret drop-off at our booth. Visiting the booth one day to make sure the magazines on display were still neat and tidy, I noticed a roll of stickers on the table. Upon closer inspection, I saw that the stickers read: “Collision Repair Equal To Mechanical Repair Rates: Why Not?” And there was also a mysterious symbol that my wild imagination took to be the logo of some secret society. But it wasn’t so mysterious after all; the letter “Y” and the drawing of a knot was a visual representation of: Why + Not. Haha, very clever!

Keys To Making 2023 A Huge Success For Your Auto Body Shop

Stopping daily work to work “on” your business instead of “in” your business is essential in order to deliver change in the new year. 

Auto Body Consolidation Update: What Will 2023 Bring?

The bull market of consolidation is expected to continue in 2023 even amidst high inflation, rising interest rates and other challenges.

The Great Awakening: Collision Repairers Taking a Stand

Many repairers are now taking a stand, realizing they cannot conduct business the way they used to.

CARSTAR Fort Collins: Process Produces Performance

The new facility that CARSTAR Fort Collins moved into was designed with organization and performance in mind.

Other Posts

Are Collision Repairers Their Own Worst Enemy?

It’s always been easy for repairers to see insurers as the bogeyman that causes all of their problems, but insurers are merely taking advantage of repairers’ lack of business knowledge and acumen.

Are You Ready to ROCK in 2023?

Do you know a “rockstar” in the automotive aftermarket? Then it’s time to nominate them as a Vehicle Care RockStar!

BodyShop Business 2022 Executives of the Year

This year’s Single-Shop award winner is Michael Bradshaw of K & M Collision in Hickory, N.C., and the Multi-Shop winner is Matt Ebert of Crash Champions.

Conducting Collision Business: It’s a New Day

The goal is not to declare war against insurers; it is to declare independence for your organization so that you’re able to provide the highest level of service to your true customers.