Starting in 2018 our kits are delivered unassembled from the factory. Although in the past we used to assemble the cars enough to allow them to be rolled onto a shipper’s truck, we have concluded that that no longer makes sense for the following reasons:
Faster delivery times: Production times are reduced, and labor-related delays are minimized by no longer pre-assembling cars to a rolling stage.
Eliminating wasted labor: Builders had to disassemble the cars anyway when they arrived, so most of the assembly work we were doing was redundant in most cases.
Reduced damage in shipping: Some cars were being damaged in shipment, including some cosmetic wheel damage. By keeping the wheels in boxes, they arrive in pristine condition, fresh from the powder coaters. And when cars could be rolled around but not braked, it was easier to damage the body as well. Crating the kits makes for fewer damaged cars and parts.
Industry standard in shipping: We wanted to align with how the rest of the industry does it- and the other competitors typically shipped their car kits the same way we are now doing. This makes price and value determinations easier since, at least as far as shipping is concerned, buyers can now compare apples-to-apples.
Ability to hold prices stable: We were absorbing the cost of some assembly that none of our other competitors did, so it seemed reasonable to put those savings back into keeping prices constant despite many improvements to the cars over the years, as well as generally increased costs from suppliers. In fact, we’ve held kit prices constant for over a decade, something that none of our competitors have done- some have raised them as much as 20% or more!
Reduced shipping costs for international customers: Crating make more sense for the increasing number of international customers, as it is cheaper and safer to ship a crate internationally rather than a non-running car.
Generally reduced shipping costs for domestic customers: It turns out that shipping a car kit domestically is also cheaper in most cases, compared to shipping a non-running car. And for those who want to pick up a car at the factory, it’s still just as easy.
There are two packing/shipping options:
- You pick it up at the Superlite/RCR factory. We’ll drop your crate or un-crated kit on your open trailer using our forklift, leaving you only the responsibility of properly securing it for the trip back home. There is no charge for this option.
- We pack it in a custom wood shipping crate and you arrange to have it shipped to your location. There is a $699 crating charge.
See the FAQs below for more information.
Does this mean the builder will have extra assembly time?
There should be little or no increase in overall assembly time. For example, while the car will be delivered with the suspension in boxes, you won’t have to disassemble the suspension first, then re-assemble it as in the past.
Can I pick up the car at the factory with a trailer?
Yes, so long as you have the appropriate tie-downs and related equipment and you're comfortable using them. We're happy to load the kit on your trailer, but for liability reasons you're responsible for securing the load.
If you plan on using an open trailer, having it crated means it will be easier to secure, it's more weather resistant and it's more discreet (i.e., if you park it over night). An enclosed trailer really doesn't need a crate for transport purposes.
What are the dimensions of the crate?
Approximately 184" L x 80" W x 40" H.
Can I have the entire car kit shipped to me in a crate, right to my home?
Depending on where you live, there are several options.
You can use regular freight lines that accept Less Than Load (LTL) freight. Depending on the carrier, they can deliver the crate anywhere in the USA to a distribution center near you where it can be picked up on a rollback truck and delivered to your home. Some freight companies will do residential delivery from local trucks based near their distribution centers, so you can get the entire transaction managed from one carrier.
This change means that the number of possible freight forwarders has been dramatically increased, compared to a relatively small set of carriers specializing on the car carrier trade. Usually, it's cheaper to ship a car-sized crate than an actual car.
Another alternative is to use the PODS network. In this case, you would arrange for a PODS container to be sent to the factory in Michigan. RCR/Superlite will load the kit, and install a combination padlock on the loaded container. The combination will be emailed to you, and when the PODS container is delivered to your home, you will have a total of 30 days (including the drop-off, loading at the factory, and shipment time) to unload your new car kit. When it’s empty, call PODS for a pickup. If it takes longer to unpack, more rental time can easily be added with just a phone call to the PODS folks.
Will I need to have people on-site when the car kit is delivered?
In the past, you normally needed several people to move the non-running car from the truck to where you wanted it. This often made scheduling difficult, as shipping companies didn’t always know exactly when they would arrive, and making your car buddies wait for hours till the truck showed up wasn’t always easy.
Now, when a crated kit or PODS container arrives, you don’t need a team of others to get it where it needs to go- so you can take your time unpacking it, and getting to inventory the car and its parts. If you use an inexpensive rental or owned open trailer to move your car from the factory, you may be surprised at how easy it is to remove the pieces from the crate, or the secured loose parts. The body pieces are easily handled by two people, and even the chassis is lighter than you might think- and easy for three people to lift and move it wherever it needs to be.
Do I still need to send a set of tires to the factory ahead of kit shipment?
No, builders no longer need to send tires to the factory for shipping purposes, allowing them to select and buy tires at their convenience, typically nearer the end of the build. This makes expenses easier to spread out, and results in fresher tires for most builders.