Do Not Sell My Personal Information Jump to content

Inivisible Clear Plastic "bras" On The Front End And Hood


Recommended Posts

Hi all,

What do people think of the clear plastic stuff that you can have put on the front end and hood to prevent rock chips etc (dont know the official name for this - but it is a great alternative to having the black leather bra things that I think dont look good on lexuses).

The dealer told me it is a $600 accessory if they do it. have people found it worthwhile? Does it last? Are there aftermarket places that can do it for less?

-Boston Snowboarder

2005 ES330

Link to comment
Share on other sites


Hi all,

What do people think of the clear plastic stuff that you can have put on the front end and hood to prevent rock chips etc (dont know the official name for this - but it is a great alternative to having the black leather bra things that I think dont look good on lexuses).

The dealer told me it is a $600 accessory if they do it. have people found it worthwhile? Does it last? Are there aftermarket places that can do it for less?

-Boston Snowboarder

2005 ES330

I had it put on my Acura NSX a couple of years ago. I like the protection from rock chips it offers (especially on such a low car as the NSX) and it is almost invisible depending on the color of your car (some colors hide it better than others). My clear bra was a 3M product applied by an authorized installer of it. I think I paid around 500 dollars to cover the front bumper to half way up the hood and on the side view mirrors.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


I've heard these things overtime fade & becomes discoloured....especially in areas where you get harsh winter conditions & alot of road salt is used (which I have seen & it's looks aweful). I had the chance to put them on both my ES's, but decided to pass. Pretty pricy item too for such a small area that's being covered imo.

I agree with mburn, you do your best to keep the finish in great shape (wash/wax often, never get behind a gravel truck etc lol)......but over time, you will get dings, chips & the occasional dent.

Put that $600 towards a good set of tires, or 16" rims for winter rubber or part of it to a nice tint job (which does wonders for appearance). Just my 2 cents.

:cheers:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I guess I am the opposite. Skip it. Ya in protects like 5% of the car. What about the other %? You are going to get scratches, chips, dents etc. It is a car.

For me, the front paint is the least of my chipping issues.

You have an older car and you don't live in an urban highway area. The newer finishes with low VOC paints chip much more easily than the older finished. I am truly sorry I did not buy it when I bought my car, and my next car will absolutely have it before I ever even drive one mile.

Every mark on my car is relegated to the parts of the front end that would have been protected by a clear bra. Its not horrible, but its definately noticable if only to me.

I've heard these things overtime fade & becomes discoloured....especially in areas where you get harsh winter conditions & alot of road salt is used (which I have seen & it's looks aweful). I had the chance to put them on both my ES's, but decided to pass. Pretty pricy item too for such a small area that's being covered imo.

Those are the older films, and even then if you kept them protected with wax or sealant and polished them regularly that didn't happen.

If that ever should happen, you can always just remove and replace the film.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You have an older car and you don't live in an urban highway area. The newer finishes with low VOC paints chip much more easily than the older finished. I am truly sorry I did not buy it when I bought my car, and my next car will absolutely have it before I ever even drive one mile.

Every mark on my car is relegated to the parts of the front end that would have been protected by a clear bra. Its not horrible, but its definately noticable if only to me.

You call I-10 in Houston Texas not a highway??? There is more 18 wheelsers on this road (throwing rocks etc) then DC my friend. Why do you think there is not glass coverage here.

The way I look at it, a car is a dimishing return and it will get marks etc. That is part of driving it. I have marks, chips, dings in mine since I drive it daily. But that is me.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Do you drive I-10 in Houston twice a day every day?

And the roads are far better maintained there than they are here. The constant hot and cold and all the snow equipment really tear the roads up and that creates a lot of stones for cars to spit up onto your car when you're driving down the highway.

A car is a diminishing return. But why do you detail it? Why do people repair damage to their cars when they get damaged? Why bother washing them? Why buy touch up paint? Why insure them for anything but liability or catastrophic loss? Why do paintless dent repair companies exist?

The fact of the matter is people care about their car's appearance. If you care about the condition and appearance of a new car, and rock chips specifically bother you, then I strongly urge you to have a clear bra installed. If you do it when the car is new they can wrap it into the financing and you'll never even notice the couple dollars per month.

Just read the forums here for the new cars and listen to the complaints about rock chips. Cars will get marks and chips, but the issue nowadays is much worse because of the new paints. For $600, the front of your new car will never get a rock chip.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Do you drive I-10 in Houston twice a day every day?

And the roads are far better maintained there than they are here. The constant hot and cold and all the snow equipment really tear the roads up and that creates a lot of stones for cars to spit up onto your car when you're driving down the highway.

A car is a diminishing return. But why do you detail it? Why do people repair damage to their cars when they get damaged? Why bother washing them? Why buy touch up paint? Why insure them for anything but liability or catastrophic loss? Why do paintless dent repair companies exist?

The fact of the matter is people care about their car's appearance. If you care about the condition and appearance of a new car, and rock chips specifically bother you, then I strongly urge you to have a clear bra installed. If you do it when the car is new they can wrap it into the financing and you'll never even notice the couple dollars per month.

Just read the forums here for the new cars and listen to the complaints about rock chips. Cars will get marks and chips, but the issue nowadays is much worse because of the new paints. For $600, the front of your new car will never get a rock chip.

Yup, 90 miles a day (4 lanes to 8). Roads are not an issue. If you drove here you could tell the issue in about 10 minutes. It is called trucks, most busy in the state, since most have concrete and dirt loaded in them. It comes off the trucks and hits all cars. Nothing new.

I wax it since I enjoy it, as I noted before NOT to save its valve. It is not worth $^**% as most cars are not when you drive off the lot.

To close, your little $600 paint bra will not last long in Texas, trust me. Everything is bigger here and a little 20 mil plastic will maybe save 50% of the rocks. Save your money here. You again need to worry about more things then little rocks chips in your paint here. Then again people will pay $600 for a plastic bra but will not spend $20 for oil testing..Which one makes the car last longer here? LOL

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I guess I am the opposite. Skip it. Ya in protects like 5% of the car. What about the other %? You are going to get scratches, chips, dents etc. It is a car.

For me, the front paint is the least of my chipping issues.

You have an older car and you don't live in an urban highway area. The newer finishes with low VOC paints chip much more easily than the older finished. I am truly sorry I did not buy it when I bought my car, and my next car will absolutely have it before I ever even drive one mile.

Every mark on my car is relegated to the parts of the front end that would have been protected by a clear bra. Its not horrible, but its definately noticable if only to me.

I've heard these things overtime fade & becomes discoloured....especially in areas where you get harsh winter conditions & alot of road salt is used (which I have seen & it's looks aweful). I had the chance to put them on both my ES's, but decided to pass. Pretty pricy item too for such a small area that's being covered imo.

Those are the older films, and even then if you kept them protected with wax or sealant and polished them regularly that didn't happen.

If that ever should happen, you can always just remove and replace the film.

Thanks for all of the comments!!

Well - I will say that I looked at a number of the used cars at Herb Chambers Lexus of Sharon, MA. The one I bought is an 05 with only 29K miles on it, but there were lots of chips on the front end and front of the hood. And yes, the newer paint seems real vulnerable - there are chips gone right through the paint (my old 1999 Honda Civic that I have has NO chip marks at all and without waxing it at all the finish is in great shape). I negotiated in my deal that they repaint my front end and hood which they are doing. I did test drive another 05 with about 50K miles on it which had the clear plastic bra. This car was driven in New england where there is road salt, grit, ice etc and the clear plastic bra seemed to be in good shape still. AND, it did seem to have protected the paint well as it was in good shape. I did'nt buy this one due to the higher miles but now that I think about it, the fact that it already had the plastic bra was a good feature.

Researching it online, it appears that if you have a shop do it, it costs around $500 to do the front end. You can by the official 3M material pre-cut for about $150 on ebay, but it says to install it when the temperature is between 60 and 90 degrees, so for me, i wouldn't be able to self install until May! There are some cheaper knock off films available on ebay for next to nothing, but I wonder about the quality of these.

Boston Snowboarder

:cheers:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I wax it since I enjoy it, as I noted before NOT to save its valve. It is not worth $^**% as most cars are not when you drive off the lot.

When have I said anything about saving its value.

Let me highlight some of my post so you can better understand my position.

If you care about the condition and appearance of a new car, and rock chips specifically bother you, then I strongly urge you to have a clear bra installed.

When did I say anything about the value of the car?

To close, your little $600 paint bra will not last long in Texas, trust me. Everything is bigger here and a little 20 mil plastic will maybe save 50% of the rocks.

I know several people who live in Texas and have had clear bras for years with no problems.

"My little $600 clear bra"?, why does every discussion with you have to get so nasty?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I know several people who live in Texas and have had clear bras for years with no problems.

"My little $600 clear bra"?, why does every discussion with you have to get so nasty?

Texas is big my friend and you can live here and not drive on I-10 or drive more then 10 miles...This is not a nasty discussion. It is funnny.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I know people who live in Houston specifically and have no issues with their clear bras on Autopia.

Forgive me if i read it wrong which is entirely possible, but this just reads as nasty to me:

To close, your little $600 paint bra
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I know people who live in Houston specifically and have no issues with their clear bras on Autopia.

Forgive me if i read it wrong which is entirely possible, but this just reads as nasty to me:

To close, your little $600 paint bra

So do I and they might not drive on sam houston, 59 SW or I-10. Have you driven on I-10 lately? It is a bomb zone (for last 4 years) for the next 3 years. Drive there and again the $600 clear bra will do jack $$^. Look at 10 cars and I bet 40% have cracked or broken windshields. But I live here and know what I see. The little $600 paint bra, yup, will do $#$% when you have 20-tons of bank run flying of a Peterbuilt doing 85 mph (uncovered).... Sorry steve but this is not nasty at all. It again is funny that people here will worry about $600 paint bra that MIGHT do something in light conditions. Save the $600 and get the same effect; at least when I am. I lived in Northeast and I salt and rocks on the roads are not even in the same ballpark....

But if it makes you feel better, have at it. 1000 to 1 in one year it would look the same or damn close to someone without it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Okay, so lets say for the sake of argument that if you drive on that road lets say that the clear bra won't make a difference.

But, most of the country's population does not drive on that road. For the rest of them I know the clear bra will absolutely make a difference because I've seen it first hand.

I know for a fact saving the $600 won't have the same effect, the front end of my own car is the proof.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Okay, so lets say for the sake of argument that if you drive on that road lets say that the clear bra won't make a difference.

But, most of the country's population does not drive on that road. For the rest of them I know the clear bra will absolutely make a difference because I've seen it first hand.

I know for a fact saving the $600 won't have the same effect, the front end of my own car is the proof.

There seem to be 2 major brands: Xpel and 3M scotchguard. Does anyone know if there is any major difference between the two?

I am going to ignore the whole discussion on the Texas freeways. All I know, is that it reinforces what I already know which is that I have no desire to live in Houston. Sounds like, your car is doomed unless you are driving a reinforced tank on the Houston freeways.

Boston Snowboarder

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I hear ya. I lived in MA and now TX. I do love how people want to spend $600 on a bra that might help a little but still have yet to overcome the short oil durations. Which one saves money? But ha, you know me:) LOL

Even if it did help, all the rocks etc will just be around the bra. You are going to get chips etc. It is part of owning a car that you drive.

Well have fun and let me know if the stuf works when you are behind a sander/salter and how good it does...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Let it go mburn, you've made your viewpoint clear.

There seem to be 2 major brands: Xpel and 3M scotchguard. Does anyone know if there is any major difference between the two?

It used to be that the Xpel was a lot thinner and was a lot smoother, but I don't know if thats the case anymore.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Let it go mburn, you've made your viewpoint clear.
There seem to be 2 major brands: Xpel and 3M scotchguard. Does anyone know if there is any major difference between the two?

It used to be that the Xpel was a lot thinner and was a lot smoother, but I don't know if thats the case anymore.

I can get the genuine 3M scotchguard hood kit for the ES330 on ebay for $69. the bumper kit is more. but need warm temperatures to install - so might wait until summer. For $69/kit, I can take a chance and try to install myself. Worst case is that it looks like hell and I take it off. I would rather avoid paying $700 to an installer if I can help it. (trying to save up $700 for remote start and alarm anyway!)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Honestly? I would not try and install it myself. I've seen it installed, its not easy at all and the product needs to be heated and stretched over the contours of the vehicle's bodywork and lined up properly with the seams.

Plus you'll be missing out on the time of year you really need it most...now.

Call around to some automotive tint places and see what costs they have, make sure you get the whole package, the hood and the bumper, otherwise its not really worth doing IMHO.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Honestly? I would not try and install it myself. I've seen it installed, its not easy at all and the product needs to be heated and stretched over the contours of the vehicle's bodywork and lined up properly with the seams.

Plus you'll be missing out on the time of year you really need it most...now.

Call around to some automotive tint places and see what costs they have, make sure you get the whole package, the hood and the bumper, otherwise its not really worth doing IMHO.

True - the time that I really need it most is NOW. actually, I need to go ASAP to my car wash place and get them to hand wax it. I am getting tons of salt stuck on it.

Called a couple of places locally and they want similar to what the dealer's guy said: $700 for the complete package. But then again, prices in Boston seem to be way higher than anywhere else. I should drive up to New Hampshire or Vemont and get it done there instead.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...
Hi all,

What do people think of the clear plastic stuff that you can have put on the front end and hood to prevent rock chips etc (dont know the official name for this - but it is a great alternative to having the black leather bra things that I think dont look good on lexuses).

The dealer told me it is a $600 accessory if they do it. have people found it worthwhile? Does it last? Are there aftermarket places that can do it for less?

-Boston Snowboarder

2005 ES330

I have the clear bra from 3M on the car and would recommend it everyday it has stopped many chips and dings

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Forums


News


Membership