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Redline Red Challenger Hellcat - CQuartz Finest

4455 Views 11 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  C. Charles Hahn
A member of the forum who is also very active in the Michigan Mopar Muscle Club contacted me earlier this year regarding CQuartz Finest for his new Challenger; after some weather delays (thanks for the long nasty winter, Michigan!) he delivered the car on a trailer in mid March.

With only 33 miles on the odometer and having never been touched by the dealership, this cat's paint was in very good shape overall, save for a handful of minor issues:

This meant that the car would need very little in the way of paint correction (a pleasant surprise compared to what some have faced); a simple one-step polish would rectify the minor marring and enhance gloss prior to the application of three coats of CQuartz Finest. We'll get to that in a bit.

First up, attention was turned to the interior, which had become soiled during shipping and storage:

Although the owner requested that remaining factory labels and decals be carefully preserved in place, there was some residue from the factory window sticker (which had already been removed) which would require some attention:

A simple vacuuming and wipe down with a mixture of waterless/rinseless wash concentrate and distilled water left all surfaces clean and fresh, without affecting the appearance of materials or finishes, and leaving the "new car smell" intact.

With the interior fully dialed in to "assembly line fresh" condition, attention was turned back to the exterior. The owner dropped off an extra pair of wheels wrapped in Nitto drag radials to be cleaned up and coated for easier removal of brake dust, tar, and rubber deposits accumulated on the strip.

After carefully stripping away the layers of mounting lubricant and mold release agents, the wheels were coated with Finest. These tires were left in their clean, natural rubber state (not dressed).

Next on the list were the remaining wheels, wheel liners, and suspension. All were slated to receive a thorough cleaning, and the brake calipers, liners, and wheel barrels were all coated with CarPro DLUX, intended to provide long lasting good looks and make clean-up after driving much easier by preventing grime from sticking. A heavy duty floor jack and stand were used to raise the car to working height.

Due to production and transport during the winter, these areas were looking rather soiled:

Attention with an industrial-grade vapor steam cleaner brought them back up to a proper standard:

An added bonus of having the wheels removed was the ability to fully access the Brembo brake calipers, which were hand polished prior to being coated with DLUX:

With the wheels and tires fully cleaned, coated, and dressed, the entire assembly (with wheels properly torqued to the 111 ft-lb. spec, of course) presents as fresh and crisp as the SRT designers and engineers intended:

The entire process was repeated for the front wheels as well; and as a side note, the 15.4" rotors and 6-piston calipers are MASSIVE! As impressive as they are with the wheels mounted, seeing them bare was quite a sight...

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Thank you! If you're interested, you can always check the CQuartz Finest installer map to find someone closer to you:

Where to Find CQuartz Nanotech Ceramic Automotive Paint Coating
Since you're an actual installer maybe you can clear something up for me, what is so special about CQuartz Finest? It's extremely expensive, what justifies that cost? Actually let me rephrase that, I know it takes you a long time and all your hours add up but what I mean is, why should someone be willing to pay so much for that service?! What are they getting other than a car that looks really clean right after it's done?!
As you correctly point out, a large part of the cost is due to preparing the vehicle for the coating. Proper paint correction to remove defects from the finish is essential to the result you're seeing in the pictures above -- the coating doesn't hide pre-existing scratches or marring, so the paint needs to be made as close to perfect as possible. Depending on the condition of your particular vehicle's paint, that can take quite a bit of time and expertise to complete safely and successfully. Since all Finest installers are hand selected by CarPro to ensure that the services are being performed by highly reputable professionals, you can be assured that you'll be well taken care of in the long term.

With regard to what makes CQuartz Finest itself special, it is important to note that paint coatings like this are nothing like the waxes or sealants you're probably used to. Instead of lasting weeks or months, you're getting years of protection, meaning much easier maintenance while also getting far superior gloss, hydrophobic properties, dirt shedding, and marring resistance. This means as long as you're willing to maintain the vehicle properly (something your installer will be happy to teach you -- safe wash technique, removing contaminants like bugs/tar/bird droppings from the coating, etc.), your vehicle will not only look clean right after the coating is initially applied, it will be possible to keep it that way long term without expending as much time and energy.

I would look at Finest as an investment in your vehicle, as opposed to simply having your car professionally detailed periodically. Let's say for example that you're being charged $1000 for the initial service, paint correction and application of Finest. The coating is under warranty for two years (guaranteed durability) and if your Hellcat is not a daily driver, it will most likely continue to provide protection long after that. If your alternative is to just have a basic detail professionally performed every six months, and you're spending $200-250 each time to do so, you're spending almost exactly the same amount in that period of time. You're primarily front-loading the cost and getting a superior result/more benefits by choosing the coating.

Hope that helps -- if you have any additional questions or concerns don't hesitate to ask.
Thanks for taking the time to give a well thought out explanation.

as long as you're willing to maintain the vehicle properly (something your installer will be happy to teach you -- safe wash technique, removing contaminants like bugs/tar/bird droppings from the coating, etc.)
See now I would've thought that after paying $1000+ for this service it would make caring for the car waaaaaaay easier but sounds like that's not necessarily the case. Honestly it kinda sounds like one of those weight loss programs that are guaranteed to work as long as you maintain a proper diet and regular exercise. :p
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