Business has certainly perked up from when we were judging last year. Once again this is another state suffering from a drought of automotive body repair technicians.
Our first stop was Mirage Spray Painters and Panel Beaters which carries manufacturer accreditation for BMW and Porsche. Mirage invested heavily in a stunning refurbishment and new paint shop a couple of years ago. The shop is clean, organised and there’s a real passion for perfectionism.
Practically a Perth institution Lombardi Bros is run by old school Italian automotive craftsman Fred and John Lombardi along with daughter Amanda. With a burgeoning basket of manufacturer accreditations they company has expanded on its already spacious workshop with a dedicated facility just for Ferrari. It wasn’t quite finished and operational on our visit and we look forward to seeing the polished end product next year.
Wayne Davies Smash
This was the first time we’ve visited Wayne Davies Smash. A cheerful Grant Davies and his team were plenty busy in this productive shop. The recent addition of 1Q1 has been an eye opener and raised production even more.
Even though strictly speaking they are an MSO, we popped in to have a sticky beak at Vizion Group’s first shop acquisition in O’Connor. They’ve done a great job of revamping a tired shop with a smart, corporate reception and a well organised workshop.
Fairway Panel and Paint
Another first visit for us. This family-run boutique shop has been rebuilt following fire. It’s not the most attractive building from the outside but step inside to a great little panel shop. It’s clean and tidy and the paint room is still looks brand new. Rob Richardson works with both his son Matt, who is a paint technician and his daughter Any who handles customer service and administration.
Another prestige shop with many surprise and delight elements - including some cupcakes for us decorated with the manufacturer badges they hold - that’s Bentley, Porsche, McLaren and Tesla. I love the fact that they use the house next door to store car interiors to protect them from harm - each car has its own room!
Recon Smash Repairs
This is a dealer-owned bodyshop that has moved to a new facility and is Toyota approved. Workshop manager Chris Brinkworth is evangelical about 5S processes and the result is a clean, tidy well ordered workplace with plenty of team communication. A further new facility will be built across the road to repair BMWs.
Fix Auto Osborne Park
Second generation Steve LoPresti showed us around a this large panel shop that handles some pretty big hits. LoPresti joined Fix Auto back in 2017 and spoke of the benefits of learning best best business practice from the network.
They weren’t keen for us to come but we were glad we did. H&M started out in a tiny shed and now has a large, if labyrinthine workshop and is an accredited BMW repairer. The reason that they wanted to wait is that they are building a huge new shop across the street and having had a look at the building we’re excited to see it next year. Second generation James Nguyen, who helps to manage the business, is a breath of fresh air, intelligent and passionate about the business.
Wayne Phipps Smash Repairs
There’s a reason why Wayne Phipps is no stranger to awards. One of the most business like repairers I’ve met, while still being uncompromising in his standards which is attested by stellar customer feedback. This is an old shop, one of the first purpose built in WA but well equipped, clean and tidy and productive.