How Much Does It Cost To Respray A Car?

Respraying your car isn’t as simple as you would think and it requires hours of preparation before any paint reaches the bodywork. In this article, we discuss why the car respray cost may be high and the various factors involved with the pricing.

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Whether you want to treat rust before it gets any worse or fancy a colour change, a full paint job is often the best option. However, how much does it cost to respray a car? Below we breakdown some of the various aspects involved with respraying a car and the pricing bracket that you should expect to pay.

What Contributes to the Car Respray Cost?


1. Location of the Body Shop

Before any paint even touches your car, the location of the body shop will play a big role in the total cost to respray a car. For example, a body shop in Central London is more than likely going to charge double that of shops outside of London.

If possible, we strongly recommend visiting body shops outside of city centres for a quotation. Even with factoring the costs of trailering the car to the body shop, you may find the quote to be far cheaper than you would expect.

2. The Car

The type and size of your car is going to make the respray cost vary quite dramatically. For example, a Ford KA is going to cost far less than a Ferrari 458. The same can be said with the size of the car because a huge Mercedes GLS is going to have far more panels to paint when compared to a Smart car.

3. The Paint

The types of paint vary from solid, metallic, matte and pearlescent and their pricing is in that exact order. Solid paints are the cheapest and easiest to repair, which means body shops will provide a much cheaper quote. However, trying to match a pearlescent finish is going to be difficult and often reflects within the premium quotation.

4. Stripping Down of Parts

One of the most time consuming and riskiest tasks when it comes to respraying a car is the stripping down of parts. Whether the shop removes a piece of trim or vintage chrome bumper, one mistake and it may result in a costly repair.

If you are able to strip down the car yourself, you could save yourself hundreds or even thousands of pounds. You can then have the car trailered to the body shop because it will most probably not be road legal once stripped.

5. Preparation Work

Whether the body shop needs to treat rusty panels, repair dents or use a body filler upon any damaged bumpers, this will all be included within the quote. Although it may be tempting to do this yourself, it may not be up to the body shop’s standards and it’s normally worth letting them do all the preparation work.

6. Quality of the Work

There is nothing wrong with paying a premium price but only if you are getting a premium finish. There are many horror stories online of terrible colour matches, overspray, peeling lacquerer and so much more.

When it comes to paint quality, you really do get what you pay for. We strongly recommend getting car respray quotes from reputable companies or those that come highly recommended from other garages or enthusiast forums.

7. Finishing Touches

To truly perfect the finish of a freshly painted car, many body shops will spend hours going over the paintwork with a car polishing machine. This helps to remove any imperfections in the paint and is often referred to by the body shop as a “flat and polish”. This involves using a car polish with the machine to remove any scratches in the top layer of paint.

8. Any Extras

Whether you want to de-chrome your car, paint the badges black or even paint the brake calipers, these extras will all come at a price. For the best bang for your buck, it’s best to add these extras in after you’ve had the quote through as they will more than likely include the extras to secure the job.

Estimated Car Respray Cost

As discussed above, the prices of a full car respray can vary based upon numerous factors.

However, as an approximation based upon the type of car and the above factors, we have created the below table regarding the cost to respray a car.

CarStandard PriceStripped Price
Saloon/Hatchback£1,750 to £2,750£1,500 to £2,250
Convertible£1,400 to £2,500£1,000 to £1,750
SUV£2,000 to £3,000£1,750 to £2,500
Classic Car£3,000 to £8,000£2,000 to £7,000
Supercar£8,000 to £15,000£6,000 to £10,000

Other extras that may increase the prices of the above table include:

  • Dent repair – £50 to £100 per panel
  • Filling in scuffs – £20 to £50 per panel
  • Alloy refurbishment – £50 to £200 per wheel
  • Pearlescent paint – Two to three times the car respray cost

If you are using a bodyshop in a populated city, you will be expected to pay a premium. Central London prices are known to be more than double the cost of some of the estimations within the table above.

Both classics and supercars have wider approximations within the table above due to the complexity of some vehicles. For example, certain supercars or classic cars have abnormal panels and ultra rare parts, which if accidentally damaged could cost thousands to put right.

Personal Experience Respraying Cars

After having over 5 cars (and still counting) fully resprayed along with many more minor bits of paint work done, we have certainly seen our fair share of costs relating to car resprays. Although expensive, you really do get what you pay for and it’s always worth visiting a few places for quotes and examples of their work.

Below is one of many classic cars that I own that has had a full respray (including a colour change) along with various other additions added to the car that needed to be sprayed.

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Conclusion

Respraying your car completely transforms it and it’s crucial that you get it right the first time. Using a bad body shop will not only ruin the look of your car but also cost even more to put it back to a presentable finish.

When searching for potential body shops, we strongly recommend that you base your assumptions upon their reputation and finished results rather than the price. We also advise that you consider using a car transportation service to get your car shipped to a reputable or more affordable body shop if possible.

author dan 4car

Written By Dan

Dan has been a car enthusiast ever since he can remember and has an extensive range of cars that include classic cars that he has restored himself from a barn find condition to modern performance cars. Whether you need advice on how to install car parts or recommendations on what products to buy, Dan’s first-hand experience will certainly help.

If you want to find out more about Dan, our testing process or the website itself, visit our about page for further information.

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