Aptera exterior finish info

Aptera Community Aptera Discussions Aptera exterior finish info

Aptera Community Aptera Discussions Aptera exterior finish info

  • Aptera exterior finish info

     Kevin Bradbury updated 1 month, 2 weeks ago 78 Members · 227 Posts
  • Philip Raymond

    Member
    November 6, 2021 at 11:46 pm

    After searching the forum, this does not appear to have been discussed before. It’s a discussion that is probably best served by community members and not Aptera, if only because they have enough on their plate at the moment, but if they want to contribute, great! Detailing (aka-car washing and polishing) is something I believe I’m not alone in my interest. Since Aptera’s are composite material bodies using wraps instead of paint for color, what is the best way to keep Aptera’s looking their best? Does anyone here on the forums have experience in detailing wraps? Just a guess on my part, but the traditional car wash and/or polishing are probably not a good idea, but maybe they are, let’s talk!

  • Len Nowak

    Moderator
    November 7, 2021 at 3:06 am

    Aptera hasn’t published the wrap they will use for production but Chris once mentioned in a video clip a 10M a ten year wrap…so I would suggest reading 3M’s 1080 wrap cleaning and care, which speaks to tour question.

    I personally avoided car washed with all my painted cars, I would never consider “ my” Aptera for a car wash, even brushless but that is just “me”

    I has a medium power 1200 psi pressure washer which I have been washing my two painted cars, for six years with great success. I don’t let them “get ahead of me with dirt build up and I apply a protectant two to four times a years and my painted finishes are great. One white the other a champagne like color

    Both cars are garage kept.


    I have a friend that had her Tesla vinyl wrapped and it is garage kept, but she used a dusting wand to remove light dust off her car and it always looked great. But she didn’t drive much????

    • John Wiley

      Member
      November 9, 2021 at 6:48 am

      I’m under the impression that highway driving deposits an oily film on the car that is picked up from oil that gets leaked onto the surface and builds up over time. I can speculate that this dirty oil film gets kicked up when the road surface is wet enough. I have always thought that this dirty oily film left on the surface of the car would require some kind of mild soap in the water bucket and a sponge or rag to get it cleaned off of the car. Not true? Maybe I’m learning of a new and better way to clean my car.

  • John Trotter

    Moderator
    November 7, 2021 at 7:05 am

    After decades of using car wash places, I returned to hand washing with my Tesla, mostly because of the reputation of their paint. I also had the car wrapped. It’s way too early to say how things will stand up, just that I find I enjoy hand washing again. Reminds me of helping my dad wash the family cars back when paint was paint. Of course the Tesla is much smaller than our 1961 Impala and the Aptera will be even easier.

  • Philip Raymond

    Member
    November 7, 2021 at 8:24 pm

    Thanks Leonard for the suggestion about 3 M’s 1080 wrap info. I found it, here’s the part about maintenance and cleaning…….

    Maintenance: Care must be taken to avoid scratching the film. Avoid
    using harsh chemicals and brushes when cleaning your vehicle and avoid
    parking near shrubs and trees or any other items than could scratch the
    vehicle.
    It may be possible to reduce the appearance of fine scratches by heating
    with a heat gun/hair dryer to approx. 50ºC often makes them disappear.
    Keep the heat gun moving across the film in a circular motion, do not aim
    the heat at a single spot for a long time.

    Cleaning: Use a cleaner designed for high-quality painted surfaces. The
    cleaner must be wet, non-abrasive, without strong solvents and have a pH
    value between 3 and 11 (neither strongly acidic, nor strongly alkaline).
    Rinse thoroughly after cleaning and dry with a clean, soft cloth or soft
    rubber squeegee to avoid water spots.

    Do not apply waxes or polishes to these films.

  • John Trotter

    Moderator
    November 7, 2021 at 8:48 pm

    Just an FYI. Saw a report of Tesla Shanghai now shipping specific colors based on full wrap and rumors that Berlin would do the same. Only a few so far, but may become “main stream” to be able to economically have more personal rides.

    • Lou Verner

      Member
      November 9, 2021 at 6:58 am

      Curious about 3M wraps so googled and found they now have “new, improved” 2080 wraps with “protective film layer”. Maybe this is way to go???

  • Riley …

    Member
    November 9, 2021 at 7:42 am

    I’ve had several cars with vinyl stripes and never had any issues till I brought it to the dealership for an oil change and they gave it a “complementary” pressure wash. Took a few 1/4” chunks off the vinyl on the roof of the car. I applied vinyl protectant weekly but nothing stops a moron with to much PSI.

  • GREG MIRICH

    Member
    November 9, 2021 at 7:24 pm

    I work for Adam’s Premium car care products and am on the official detail team for Barrett Jackson Auctions. Adam’s has a ceramic coating that works very well on wraps. It is a DIY coating that lasts from 6 months to one year for under $50.00. I use it on my XPEL paint protection film which is self healing like the 3M wrap films.

  • Laura Batchelor

    Member
    December 4, 2021 at 6:52 am

    I am not that knowledgeable about wraps. What does one do if it gets a chip/tear from flying debris on the road? Like small rocks from an overloaded old dump truck full of gravel lumbering down the expressway? Or a big scratch from a shopping cart pushed by a moron in a parking lot? No matter how careful you are, life happens. If some parts are biodegradable, I’m thinking that any break in the coating on those will need to be attended to asap. I’m assuming that the biodegradable parts will be interior, but even those can get scratched during everyday use.

  • Peter Dezendorf

    Member
    December 7, 2021 at 12:54 pm

    I apologize if this is covered in a FAQ.

    Will one be able to take an Aptera vehicle through a car wash?

  • Curtis Cibinel

    Member
    December 7, 2021 at 1:22 pm

    Shouldn’t be an issue overall. Some automatic car washes that guide the tires could be an issue due to width.

  • Len Nowak

    Moderator
    December 7, 2021 at 3:55 pm

    3M vinyl wrap has care instructions on their website

    Besides the caution for tacking for the center tire and height on the wheel covers, surely the old brush type car washes would not be a place I go.

    I power wash all my vehicle with no more than 1100psi, wide spray and never closer than six inches

    The Aptera is such a manageable size to quickly wash at home “if you can”!

    I never owned a wrapped car

  • Mark Steinback

    Member
    December 7, 2021 at 7:52 pm

    I looked at a Costco car wash since I was concerned about the width being an issue. There is only one rail on one side to pull the vehicle through, so the width of any shouldn’t be an issue.

  • GREG MIRICH

    Member
    December 12, 2021 at 8:45 pm

    There is no need to go to a car wash with the APTERA. There are waterless wash products on the market that will clean the vinyl wrap without scratching the finish. I am an official detailer for Barrett Jackson Auctions and all the vehicles that we wipe down reguardless of the dirt, we use waterless wash and it does not hurt the finish, even wrapped vehicles. We use ADAM’s waterless wash.

  • GREG MIRICH

    Member
    December 14, 2021 at 4:11 pm

    Josh Rosen, I use ADAM’S Graphene spray coating. You use a alcohol base coating prep to remove any contamination from the surface. Then spray the coating on an applicator and apply it to a 2 ft square area and allow the solvent to flash( about 1 min.) it gets a rainbow appearance and then wipe off the coating residue. Repeat the process on the rest of the car. Allow the coating to cure without moisture for a couple of hours and you are good for a year or more, depending on your environment. Surface will shed water better and the shine will be deeper. Can be applied on rims and glass. You are applying a layer of glass to the surfaces. Awesome product.

  • Philip Raymond

    Member
    February 24, 2022 at 11:53 pm

    I’m starting this thread, in the hopes of Aptera management reading this and perhaps changing the custom color price. Simply said, it’s much higher than it needs to be in my opinion and most like me, will not pay it, even though we would prefer another color. If the price were $500 extra, instead of $1500, I truly believe more buyers would opt for a different color, I know I would. More people paying $500 would likely make more money for Aptera by increased volume of those choosing this option. I look forward to more input on this from other reservation holders.

  • Steven G. Bueche

    Member
    February 25, 2022 at 3:55 am

    Hi Philip, I can only offer these as possible reasons as to the pricing difference;

    Cost of material – If Aptera orders large quantities of the said stock three colors it cost less. Having the wrap company order any one bolt of vinyl cost more as they have to purchase the entire bolt for one car and hope someone else will buy/want the rest. If not they’re stuck with the remainder. Therefor you pay the cost. All custom things cost more.

    Production Line – If the company that does the wrapping has a dedicated line or area for a production run they may have to change things up to fit your car in and this slows things down and adds additional cost even though it may be only labor. Labor is in some cases the most expensive cost factor in business. In fact wraps are very labor intensive.

    It may also help to investigate the cost of wrapping a car. I paid almost $1,500 just to wrap the front end of my Tesla 3 for paint protection (clear and thicker) Whole cars can range from $2,500 – $5,000 depending on the cars complexity. It seems pricy for some plastic but if you’ve ever watched a car being wrapped it’s pretty time consuming. My wife and I used our sentry mode to watch the guys wrap ours from the house. Just my front wrap took over three hours and the M3 is pretty smooth compared to some of the more faceted car bodies.

    I personally am getting the Sol (white) but the more I look at the shiny silver Luna I’m thinking I might wait for the wrap to age and then Paint mine.

    • This reply was modified 9 months, 1 week ago by  Steven G. Bueche. Reason: Edit for spelling errors
    • This reply was modified 2 months, 3 weeks ago by  Gabriel Kemeny.
  • Joshua Rosen

    Member
    February 25, 2022 at 6:24 am

    They are offering three standard colors, that seems like enough, Tesla only has one free color (white) and everything else is $1-2K extra and it’s a very small set of extra choices. For those that want something special Aptera is offering a wide variety of custom wraps. This is an opportunity for them to make an extra profit, they should price it so that they maximize their profit. A custom wrap isn’t something anyone needs, it’s just a discretionary expenditure and by offering a very wide selection they might attract a lot of people who like that sort of thing. Steve puts the price for a wrap at a custom shop at $2.5-5K, that makes Aptera’s price a bargain, maybe too much of a bargain.

    I’m going with a standard color, I don’t remember which one I specified but I suspect I’ll revisit the choice when it’s time to actually buy the car. All of the standard choices look fine to me, I don’t see any reason to pay extra for a custom color. Driver’s assist, premium sound and a bigger battery all have tangible benefits so I’m willing to pay for those but not for a custom wrap unless they offer a more durable wrap as an option. But those are my priorities.

  • Ray Holan

    Moderator
    February 25, 2022 at 6:33 am

    Philip, it remains to be seen if Aptera is going to wrap the vehicle. I seem to recall a recent video where Chris stated that they were undecided about doing a vinyl wrap or something else. In any case, the real question you’re posing is “$1,500. Is this too high a price for a custom color?” As others have stated in this thread, local wrapping costs MAY be even higher. If that’s true then the $1,500 premium Aptera is currently listing is a fair deal. I know paint costs have spiked in the last year. I just paid $37 for an 8 oz. can of spray paint for my kitchen cabinets! This was a premium paint in a custom-match color. So who knows what the coloring alternative costs could be for Aptera?

  • Eric Miller

    Member
    February 25, 2022 at 7:03 am

    The range of costs I see for wrapping vehicles is from about $3,000 to $7,000. So I was actually wondering why Aptera’s price was so low. I guess if they were going to wrap it anyway in one of the standard colors, their cost would be less than a full aftermarket wrap.

    • This reply was modified 9 months, 1 week ago by  Eric Miller.
    • OZ (It’s OZ, Just OZ)

      Member
      February 25, 2022 at 8:39 am

      If they go with wraps, the only cost difference would be for materials, and since they would likely limit it to what their supplier has (Unless you brought your own.), and from what I’ve seen (Feel free to jump in with informed pricing info from those who are more in the know.), there doesn’t seem to be a significant difference from one wrap to the other (I mean the standard color palate should be the same, the reflective and color change a bit more?), that would mean that the $1500 would be close to pure profit.

    • OZ (It’s OZ, Just OZ)

      Member
      February 25, 2022 at 8:49 am

      After reading back to Steven’s response above, I did leave out the probability that they get a fair discount on the large amount purchases of the three basic colors, so that amounts to a part of the money. Also I agree with the idea that something out of the standard will require more time and is an interruption to a smooth assembly process, so the amount could just as well be something to dissuade people from doing so, unless they really want it.

  • Joshua Rosen

    Member
    February 25, 2022 at 10:32 am

    I think they should offer three tiers. The basic Black, White and Silver included in the price, a limited set of popular premium colors, Red, Green, Blue for $1000-$2000 (Tesla pricing) and full custom for the market rate for wrapping ($2500-3500). A small standard set of premium colors won’t complicate their inventory management so the extra charge would be pure profit. Full custom means that they have to special order wraps so there is some additional handling costs but if they set the price right there is an opportunity for a significant extra profit. The premium price should be set at a level where they would get a significant percentage of buyers opting for it, i.e. high enough to make a profit but not so high that people who don’t have strong feelings about color might still go for it. Full custom competes with the aftermarket, they don’t have to price it any cheaper than it would cost someone to take it to a shop. Getting it done at the factory is a significant time saver so even at the same price as an independent shop or even a little higher it’s a bargain.

  • John Malcom

    Member
    February 25, 2022 at 4:11 pm

    Aptera did well in the selection of standard colors. According to iSeeCars research, looking at over 9.4 million cars (A nice large sample😀), white,black, gray, and silver ( In the order of preference) account for 77.1% of all cars on the road today.

  • Leonard Diasio

    Member
    March 17, 2022 at 3:49 pm

    Hypothetical Question here: Would you be willing to pay extra for a factory paint job?

    I would, depending on how much is involved. But $1,500 seems like a real bargain.

    • This reply was modified 4 months, 2 weeks ago by  John Trotter. Reason: Title expanded for search clarity
    • This reply was modified 2 months, 3 weeks ago by  Gabriel Kemeny.
  • Leonard Diasio

    Member
    March 17, 2022 at 4:04 pm

    If all willing purchasers chip in a little cash, the cost of a paint booth can be amortized over many people. This would make financing such an operation more lucrative.

    • kerbe2705

      Member
      March 17, 2022 at 10:35 pm

      At 10,000 units per year, we’re not talking that “one-car-at-a-time” paint booth that your local body shop has installed – we’re talking a multi-million dollar robotic line. Plus there’s no guarantee that the composite body will even accept paint without being reformulated to do so.

  • Len Nowak

    Moderator
    March 17, 2022 at 4:05 pm

    That is ( was) the case given the CA location but I am not sure the door is shut on just wrap. Colored composite is being used in the development vehicles with vinyl wrap

    Chris would know what his composite could take “if” painting is revisited.

    I believe the old Aptera 2e was paint and decals back in the X- Prize says

    I had a ride in the 2e and assumed it was painted back in ~ 2009

    Now with full solar and the option to leave in the sun all day.. whatever is more durable is good with me

    I never owned a composite body or vinyl wrapped

  • Scott

    Member
    March 17, 2022 at 4:36 pm

    I am very willing to pay extra for a paint or gel coat option, even though in my opinion it is better for Aptera long term to have a baseline higher quality (i.e., non-vinyl wrap) finish so as to just get rid of all the controversy, eliminate the longevity/maintenance/accumulating cost questions for current and future on-the-fence customers, and support Aptera’s brand integrity long term.

    Regarding cost of creating a paint shop: Agreed that the extra cost of an Aptera-specific paint shop could be amortized over increased revenue from the option that many people appear to be interested in receiving. I hope they do the math and make it profitable. Increased profit can be derived from each individual associated option sale as well as from higher overall volume sales since the controversial vinyl wraps decision gets removed as a potential show-stopper for some customers.

    Alternatively, paint can also be outsourced to an existing paint shop. Then, Aptera does not need to invest in creating a paint shop and a different company gets to make some income off of their existing paint shop capital expense investment, all funded by the paint (or gel coat) “upsell” optional cost that a number of reservation owners appear willing to pay for a better quality ownership experience. There are already many examples of Aptera’s components and design that are being outsourced.

    • Bob Kirchner

      Member
      March 17, 2022 at 6:49 pm

      If it comes with gel coat, that’s great. If it comes with a wrap, I’m okay with that too. If the wrap falls apart, I’ll take it to a local body shop and have it painted, rather than getting it re-wrapped.

    • Jacob Armstrong

      Member
      March 17, 2022 at 9:04 pm

      I was wondering why nobody had mentioned the option of outsourcing the paint job. With Aptera’s relatively low-volume production, I’d think that paying a bit extra per-job at an established paint shop would be cheaper than building their own shop.

      • Vernon Michael Gardner

        Member
        March 17, 2022 at 9:19 pm

        There may be an issue with painting sense the coolant is flowing through the panels. Wrapping may make the cooling less efficient. We will need to wait and see which options we can use safely with the final build.

        • kerbe2705

          Member
          March 17, 2022 at 10:37 pm

          From what we understand, the coolant won’t flow through the body panels: It’s the belly of the beast that will serve as both “chill plate” and passive radiator.

    • Jonah Jorgenson

      Member
      August 26, 2022 at 4:50 pm

      I think we should let the Aptera engineers, managers, and finance people figure out what they want to do. They have forum input from us and a lotof other information we don’t have. They know the costs of the options and how much they would add to the price of the vehicle.

      I don’t think there is anybody on the forum qualified to give then financial advice on this issue. Regardless of what they decide, we will live with it or not buy an Aptera.

      No need to agonize over it.

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