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Discussion Starter #1
So, I managed to kinda hit a guardrail this August with my '05 Elise. Long (very long) story short, G**co will not cover "racing" but they determined that an open track day is not competitive, so they'll pay for the damage and the guardrail!

Currently I face a win-win situation: if they total it, I stand to actually make a little bit (which is fair since I bought a fixer-upper which I have largely finished and prices have gone up considerably). If they want to repair it, I'll end up with a nicer car (the previous body work was a little sketchy).

My predicament now is they have valued the car higher than I could probably sell it for, so it would be best for me if it totaled. However, the shop seems to be estimating on the low side so the car isn't totaled. I've seen before where a shop charged $18k for a rear clam replacement, and these guys are charging $15k for a window, door, front clam, rear clam, wheels, and some other bits like control arms and labor.

Has anyone gone through this before with their insurance? I don't want to steal work from the shop, but I also was planning on selling the car soon anyways (I need something that is cheaper to wreck since I apparently need to work on car control).


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Wow, I've never heard of traditional insurance covering a track day. Least of all, Guyco. Personally, I'd be reluctant to post until after the work was completed, just in case the claim gets flagged.

If you are planning to sell it anyway, it certainly seems easier to just let them total it, rather than trying to sell a car yourself with an major accident on its record. It's likely that you won't have a choice regardless, based on the damage you're describing.
 

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So, I managed to kinda hit a guardrail this August with my '05 Elise. Long (very long) story short, G**co will not cover "racing" but they determined that an open track day is not competitive, so they'll pay for the damage and the guardrail!
Wow really? I was under the impression that you had to buy track-day-specific insurance.

but I also was planning on selling the car soon anyways (I need something that is cheaper to wreck since I apparently need to work on car control).
Instead of selling the car for something slightly cheaper have you considered keeping it and buying a second significantly cheaper vehicle to wreck? A Superstock Honda CR125 shifter kart is much faster around a track than the Elise anyway and way cheaper both to purchase and to repair crash damage. Or there are other kart engines to choose from as well if that's too extreme. Nothing beats karts when we're talking seat time per $ ratio.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Well, I do have karting on my short list actually! Lack of trailer and tow vehicle are knocks against it, but that can be fixed.

The company is fully aware of the situation - I don't have anything to hide. There are a few companies that explicitly exclude driving on track, but there are some that only exclude racing. That includes you autocross guys. There are incidences of companies dropping people for auto crossing. Guyco did proceed to write me a letter saying they won't cover me any more when I first asked if I would be covered, SO DO NOT ASK YOUR INSURER IF YOU ARE COVERED. They'll flag you. Look at the wording of the contract yourself. Also, google. There are some good resources. I have a couple recorded conversations where I told them where I went wide on an unrestricted private road, haha


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They can't do all that work for $15,000 unless they have some used clams in the back. Price out all the items from a dealer and demand an explanation.

Maybe they forgot the line items for paint and labor. Looks like just parts money to me.
 

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Pretty much all the companies in New England have specific language saying you're not covered in any organized moving car event. Technically, if you get hit by a Shriner in a parade, you're out of luck.

This all came out of a tool in a Porsche who totaled it at the track here. He then bought another and proceeded to total that one at the track. He then went back to the insurance company looking for money for all the modifications he had done to his Porsche. I guess the insurance company was a bit suspicious with a roll cage, harnesses, fire system all being claimed. They investigated and then all the companies included language excluding any car activities. At the time, my family owned an insurance agency and my mom highlighted the pages of language that made it clear that if you have an incident on the track, you're on your own. I bought a racecar shortly after.
 

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They can't do all that work for $15,000 unless they have some used clams in the back. Price out all the items from a dealer and demand an explanation.

Maybe they forgot the line items for paint and labor. Looks like just parts money to me.
My recent front clam replacement was $9,500. New front clam = $6,500; paint = $2,000; + other small misc parts + labor.

Definitely not giving you 2 factory new clams + door + paint + labor @ $15k, unless they "fell off a truck" somewhere.

That being said, the other guy's insurance company only appraised the damage @ about $1,700 (LOL) and the body shop (next door to Lotus NE) got them to bump it up by explaining what was actually needed.

Most shops I've been to with other cars purposely low-ball it to get the job, then once they've begun the work will say "oh yeah, we missed X, Y, and Z". None of those cars were ever the same afterwards. I haven't figured out how to persuade them yet, but get them to total it if you can if it's not just cosmetic. If the control arms need replacing, I'm guessing it's not just cosmetic...
 

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My recent front clam replacement was $9,500. New front clam = $6,500; paint = $2,000; + other small misc parts + labor.

Definitely not giving you 2 factory new clams + door + paint + labor @ $15k, unless they "fell off a truck" somewhere.

That being said, the other guy's insurance company only appraised the damage @ about $1,700 (LOL) and the body shop (next door to Lotus NE) got them to bump it up by explaining what was actually needed.

Most shops I've been to with other cars purposely low-ball it to get the job, then once they've begun the work will say "oh yeah, we missed X, Y, and Z". None of those cars were ever the same afterwards. I haven't figured out how to persuade them yet, but get them to total it if you can if it's not just cosmetic. If the control arms need replacing, I'm guessing it's not just cosmetic...
You do know that you can have the car fixed at ANY repair facility that you choose.

Me - I would tell the Ins Co that if it is to be repaired it will be done at xxx company (with xxx being the Lotus dealer or any other place you choose) and if they (Ins CO) choose to have it repaired they need to get the repair estimate at your chosen shop.

Herb
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Well, that's the thing. I picked a local lotus dealer since I'm lucky enough to have one 20 minutes away. I am supposed to meet the insurance guy there this coming week to hash out everything, but the shop is dragging their feet. The salt on the wound is that the insurance company says they'll only pay $38/hr for labor! They were able to go up to something like $80/hr since it is an exotic, but the shop wants over $100 and I have to make the difference. Is that really how this works? Seems f'ed up to expect $38/hr for labor...


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Discussion Starter #10
Great, now the decision is to save both clamshells and just do fiberglass work. I don't want some shoddy job - I want new panels! I'm not familiar with this whole process; is there a way to argue this so I can actually get a decent repair?


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Great, now the decision is to save both clamshells and just do fiberglass work. I don't want some shoddy job - I want new panels! I'm not familiar with this whole process; is there a way to argue this so I can actually get a decent repair?


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Fiberglass can be repaired. I think you should be thanking your lucky stars they covered anything. :shrug:
 

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Post a pic of the damage, and we might be able to give better advice. Where are you located? I've got a pretty nice spare rear clam.
 

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Spengo- great picture! Makes me want to get a go kart!

As for insurance, be careful of what you post here, the same insurance company used threads in this forum against a member before...
 

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Discussion Starter #14
ImageUploadedByAG Free1384384680.653686.jpg

So as you can tell, the damage isn't too terrible. The big things are that both front rear a-arms were damaged and the window was cracked. The rear clam to the worst of it (and the battery post went through the top of the clamshell). I'm thinking this will be my plan of action: have the shop dig in and replace everything but no fiberglass work for now. That way we can confirm that the chassis is good, but I'll probably save the fiberglass for later. Anyone want a fixer-upper?


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Discussion Starter #15
Just got the email that the suspension work is done, the chassis is straight, so now I've got to drive it the body shop once the snow gives me a break unless Guyco can arrange a tow truck given the conditions and summer tires.

Hoping to get the car ready in time for an Easter road trip!

ImageUploadedByAG Free1388706211.877796.jpg

Who knew that damage would be such a headache. Going on 3 months of working through this.


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Discussion Starter #17
I'm thinking BRG since it is a non-stock color now. Plus, I bought the car from a guy who did a lot of quick-and-dirty fixes, so my budget is going towards getting everything right first (check out my WTB threads to get an idea of what I have left).

The body shop that has agreed to do the work hasn't even seen the car in person yet since it was stuck at the other shop, so his quote will have a large bearing on what I do with her.


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Discussion Starter #18
They've finally started bodywork!! I'm going to try to see if they'll let me get my hands on some of the ventilation blower issues I've been having while everything is apart.

First though, a new adjuster has been assigned, so I want to see what happens with this new guy. New record for world's longest claims process? Started last September...


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I've talked to another member here and he stated that AAA covered his Exige no questions asked under his full disclosure that the incident happened at the track. Interesting to hear about stories where insurance actually footed the bill from accidents at HPDE events.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
So, the saga continues with no end in sight...

The body shop determined about a month ago that they cannot blend the three stage paint on the repaired portions of the car with the rest of the car. They have to repaint most if the car anyways, so they submitted paperwork to geico for the supplement. In addition, they found some more damage that had been missed and included that in the supplement. After about 2-3wks of the shop saying they submitted the paperwork and geico saying they never received it, we finally figured out that the people at geico had the wrong fax number AND email address all along. Once the correct info was given to the body shop, the paperwork got submitted.

The original adjuster was brought in from another part of Michigan to fill in when my claim was originally submitted, but his request to get a local adjuster was rejected. Well, the body shop is tired of waiting around, and this guy can't get himself down here soon-ish, so everyone is getting antsy.

Now the fun part - the adjuster's supervised decides to make a surprise trip to the shop today to inspect the car. Well, the car isn't here because the work was sub'd out to a fiberglass specialist who happened to be out of the office today. It has now become apparent that this guy has a vendetta. He told the body shop that the claim never should have slipped through the radar! F'er doesn't seem to realize that it didn't slip under any radars but set off red flags! They did a thorough investigation, know exactly what happened, and agreed to pay since it was within my contract. This guy seems to think he has the right to say otherwise and that's why this whole process has been a nightmare.

Any advice, guys?


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