In the summer of 2014 I was attending an Acura press event and met an engineer with a (first-gen) Acura NSX. When I mentioned I had a 2005 Ford GT he told me about a detail shop capable of restoring the paint on older cars with micro-scratches. These scratches can be hard to see unless you know what to look for, but they have a devastating impact on a car’s appearance.
After owning my Ford GT for nearly a decade I could tell it didn’t have the same sheen I saw in early pictures when the car was new. The thought of restoring that shine through a polishing process, often referred to as “paint correction” or “color correction” was appealing, especially with a full endorsement from a knowledgable automotive engineer with his own older, mid-engine exotic car.
The shop, Esoteric Detail, is located in Columbus, Ohio, putting it about 2,000 miles from my Ford GT’s home in Southern California. I didn’t see my car ever getting to Esoteric Detail, but I couldn’t stop thinking about the possibility of restoring the GT’s original shine.
Then, in early 2015 I learned the 9th Annual Ford GT Owner’s Rally would take place in Detroit, about 200 miles due north of Columbus. I’d never shipped my car across the country, but if I could ship the GT to Detroit I could have it serviced by the GT Guys, attend the rally and visit Esoteric Detail for a paint correction.
After researching the cost of shipping my Ford GT to Detroit I decided to do exactly that. The car received Esoteric Detail’s full color correction treatment, plus a full wheel and glass detailing. The change in the car’s color tone was obvious as it backed out of the shop into full sunlight.
You can read the full story I wrote on the process at Forbes.com, but the short version is this: it worked, with the Ford GT looking as good as, or better than, the day I picked it up on August 23rd, 2005. The fact that it was completing its paint restoration treatment on August 23rd, 2015 seemed somehow fitting.