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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Paint condition at delivery

Excited my 2018 order was finally delivered today. Was less excited when I looked at the paint and noticed small scratches and swirls all over the clear coat on multiple panels. Did anyone else experience this as well? Im told this is common. They are sending to a local reputed place for paint correction which is great but how new cars can be delivered in this way is beyond me. They’re a good dealer too.
 

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I get it. My car had a scratch on rocker panel, paint chip on driver door edge, and a dent (subtle but real) on passenger front door. I too am baffled at the lack of care. My Ford Fiesta ST was in better condition at less than 1/3 of price. I corrected paint myself, and had dent removed on dealer’s dime. I know it sounds a bit like “the emperor has no clothes”—but I love my car, and forgive these issues. The performance and style at this price point is still amazing. I hope you love yours too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Exactly, I've had Honda's that sat on the lot for months delivered to me in much better (generally pristine) shape. Don't get me wrong, I do love the car and this is my second custom order from the company (despite some issues I've been through) but there are certain expectations in this segment that shouldn't be overlooked, i.e. excellent paint condition at delivery. I get people do it but having to paint correct a new car that just got dropped from the truck seems VERY unnecessary.
 

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I insisted that my dealer wash or buff the car because I was taking it to my detailer for PPF and ceramic coating. They only sprayed it off. I did not see any kind of swirling in the clear coat. My guess the dealer "buffed" the car and caused the swirling.
 
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I told my dealer not to touch it because of this risk. And taking delivery of the car in the dead of winter after work made it hard to see flaws. Paint was ok with no swirls but I had a wicked chip in the drivers rear door rocker, right on the crease line. It was all the way down to the plastic. Not sure how it got there and it was stuck at an up angle. Steering wheel leather was scuffed twice on the underside but dealer fixed that with upholstery guy sand and spray. I got my touch up paint in just over 2 weeks and filled the chip as best I could in my tight garage. Well, it could have used more but my detail guy said less was better. I had waited to finish that side skirt and his PPF guy did the best he could but there is a little divot that might have been smoother if I had added more paint. The pen worked great with the abrasive tip and brush but with the cold and lack of working space I didn't get to add more paint or clear. I followed up with a heat gun and a pin to try to vent the last tiny bubbles that appeared over the chip. Worked OK. I am not sure if I did it with the buckle from my briefcase strap, or scuffed the steering wheel for that matter, but both were a little too delicate or got some serious rough handling. I think the latter is true. Another thing is, the logistical journey over to the USA is a little much too. I think a shipping strap or tool may have caused my chip. It was deep. Hopefully this will improve as Alfa Romeo builds experience with the new FCA channels.
 

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The dealer only legally has to disclose damage if it is more than 6% of the value of the car. If they fix in house it can be substantially more because they are their numbers to play with internally. I once bought a Porsche, brand new, which I was convinced had a repaired driver side door but the dealer swore to me up and down it wasn’t the case. When I went to trade it in to the same dealer they complained the door was repainted. I politely reminded my dealer of this fact and he went to talk to the manager and they didn’t bring it up again...
 

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Hit or Miss

really something that is subjective it would seem...personally I asked my dealer to not prep the car and took it to my detailer....I did not have a paint correction done....there were some "imperfections' that came out easily with a solid detail....
there could be many reasons for slight scratches/swirls, though I agree the selling dealer should note these and correct them prior to delivery unless you advise otherwise...
as far as the actual paint quality compared to BMW (can only compare to them) it was betterthan my last 3 BMWs all showed 'orange peel' in the paint, had a PC done on 1 of them as it was a purchase...the leased cars were left alone.
I have heard from Miller that the cars wrapped in the burkas can sometimes collect gravel in the folds under the cars if they are transported in an open carrier and when they are moved about for shipment.
I have witnessed them being removed very gingerly0:) to avoid lower body panel scratches...
 

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I'd be wary letting the dealer touch your car. Chances are they're only going to make it worse. If things like swirl marks and fine scratches bother you, then you need to seek the help of a professional detailer who can correct the paint finish and then preserve it with paint protection film and/or nano-ceramic coating.

My car came with a nice big scratch on the rear bumper, fine swirl marks and a factory paint defect on the trunk. The dealer's in-house detailer did an okay job on the bumper scratch (95% improved) but who knows how much of the clear coat he took off in the process. Good detailers use a Paint Thickness Gauge before and after any paint correction is performed and provide it to you in a report so you can document the condition of the vehicle. You can only buff the finish so many times or so hard before you wear right through it. I'm still working to get my trunk lid repaired under warranty as my last dealer failed to fix the paint defect after 3 attempts. Now I'm waiting for loaner car availability so another dealer can take a crack at it. I'm not in a huge rush but this is holding up me getting the nano-ceramic coating applied.
 

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I once bought a Porsche, brand new, which I was convinced had a repaired driver side door but the dealer swore to me up and down it wasn’t the case. When I went to trade it in to the same dealer they complained the door was repainted. I politely reminded my dealer of this fact and he went to talk to the manager and they didn’t bring it up again...
Dealers love to have their cake and eat it too, work both sides of the fence, etc. This is one reason why I'm a proponent of leasing if you're not going to keep the car until it is fully-depreciated. At some point a repainted door might be seen as a plus depending on the condition of the rest of the vehicle. Wear and tear happens. Fender benders happen. But in this world of CARFAX and paint thickness gauges, everyone is wary. This is also why diminished value claims are becoming so important when there is collision damage and insurance companies are involved.
 

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I have heard from Miller that the cars wrapped in the burkas can sometimes collect gravel in the folds under the cars if they are transported in an open carrier and when they are moved about for shipment.
I have witnessed them being removed very gingerly0:) to avoid lower body panel scratches...
Yeah paint protection things they do for transport only work if stuff doesn’t get under the fabric material. It’s like those hideous black vinyl old nose bra’s. If you could ignore how ugly they are they would offer pretty good protection even from small rocks but the second they got dirt and grit under them they became like sandpaper...
 

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My 2017 Q4 was delivered in perhaps the worst condition of any car new car I ever received. The sill plates on both the driver and passenger sides had no protective coating on them and the driver's side was scratched and scuffed repeatedly. The rocker panel behind the rear door on the driver's side has NUMEROUS chips. It looked as though the dealer took the car over a gravel road and the rocks kicked up and caused damage.
 

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Wouldn't take a car in any condition but perfect. If there are swirls, etc., tell the dealer you want a new one or walk. It's your money and decision.
 

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2018 Q4 with Fiamenghi Ti exhaust, Race Mod, and Tecnico wheels.
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Excited my 2018 order was finally delivered today. Was less excited when I looked at the paint and noticed small scratches and swirls all over the clear coat on multiple panels. Did anyone else experience this as well? Im told this is common. They are sending to a local reputed place for paint correction which is great but how new cars can be delivered in this way is beyond me. They’re a good dealer too.
I do not know how common it is. I observed no paint flaws in my car, although the PPF installer found one hidden flaw on the underside of the car.

OTOH, panel alignment on my car is less than perfect. I just noticed that my front passenger door is misaligned at the front edge and noticed on delivery that the gas cap cover and front and rear fascia fit was imperfect. The fascia fit seems to be "within tolerance", but the door fit has me wondering now if my car has been repaired; perhaps accounting for some of the 45 days it took from reaching the port of San Diego to being put on a truck for delivery.
 

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My special order Ti Sport was delivered in perfect condition. Paint correction made it even better by eliminating a subtle orange peel in the clear coat.
 

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Some gas cap covers were known to warp. Is that what you see? I thought this was fixed after 2017?
 
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
So I ended up having the car sent to a pro that does paint correction. The dealer will cover the paint correction and I’ll chip in the extra dollars to get a 2 stage ceramic coat completed. Between that and the traveling it means I’m not going to see the car for another 1-2 weeks. But I hope it will be worth it! The shop seems very reputable and has some high end cars under their belt.

Funny, I actually told the dealer not to touch the car upon delivery. Apparently they just rinsed it down for the prepurchase inspection but by the time I saw it was as if someone has rolled around on it with rough clothing and tools.

I also heard some comments about how the Montecarlo blue in particular was prone to blemishing. Don’t know how true that is either but I hope not.
 

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swirls are typically dealer/detailer installed with a rotary power buffer, which makes the swirling really shiny, and whatever orange peel there was becomes twice as noticeable.
 

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Some gas cap covers were known to warp. Is that what you see? I thought this was fixed after 2017?
The cover does not appear to be warped, it appears to be held at an angle relative to the fender. I suspect that it is not properly seated on the hinge. Besides what little I can see I do not know how the cap is attached to the hinge to attempt an adjustment.
 
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