New Era (Windhoek)

Namibia: Suzuki Opens 'Cosmetic' Panel Beating Workshop

Article Views (non — Suzuki Windhoek are offering their customers and public an additional service with the opening of their 'cosmetic' panel beating workshop which is situated at their dealership facility, focussing on good workmanship at affordable prices in a 'one stop shop' setting.

This newly opened feature is more than just providing an additional convenience factor to the Suzuki owner and man in the street, as Woema learnt last week. In fact this is a small business empowerment drive from the company to join hands with once freelance panel beater Elvin Kambaripa and his team.

According to Willie Baardman, they entered into a partnership with Elvin who was previously doing odd jobs for them, and have assisted him with a permanent panel beating facility at the Suzuki dealership premises, plus the use of material and tools.

When Woema turned up for an interview they had just delivered a Suzuki to an elated customer who had brought their vehicle in for a service, and got more than she bargained for. The customer was pleasantly surprised to learn that her unsightly damaged bumper was able to be fixed and spray painted fuss free for a very affordable price, and that their friendly 'one stop shop' service saved her time and money.

"We want to make life hassle free for our customers who are looking for a quick fix on a smaller job, " said Elvin who is originally from Oranjemund and has learnt his trade from some of the bigger guys in town, like Pikkies Body Works where he learnt to cut, join and spray paint like a pro.

After doing odd jobs here and there for Suzuki he struck a deal with then in December last year, to head up a joint venture that would benefit three ways - himself, the company and the customer.

Baartman also mentioned that the idea is for Elvin and his team to grow into a fully fledged panel beating outlet, but for now they are concentrating on "convenience cosmetic" panel beating jobs. They also work on restoring projects in particular the original iconic Suzuki 'SJ' Jeep, which are very popular and have a good second hand market.

Pointing to three SJ's on the floor in various stages of restoration, Baardman said that they strip them down to the skeleton, and between their workshop team who overhaul the engines and the new panel beating facility, they are able turn out an old favourite into showroom quality item that can go for another ten years.

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