Vinyl Car Wrapping Palette

Not only does car wrapping enhance the aesthetic appeal of a vehicle but it is also a good way to further protect a car’s exterior.

So, if you’re in the printing or sign-making business and your customers have been asking about the cost of custom-printed car wrapping, here’s a complete breakdown that can help guide your response.

How Much Does Car Wrapping Cost

Average Cost of Car Wrapping

Car wraps such as 3M cast vinyl are made of durable polyvinyl chloride material, which can be quite expensive. A full car wrap installed by a professional can cost between $2,000 and $6,000. However, this is a ballpark figure. Depending on the car model and the quality of the wrapping material used, the price can go as high as $12,000.

The average cost per square foot of a wrap is $5 to $15 and installation charges are $3 to $4 per square foot, although this number can vary depending on the condition of the car and how the customer wants it wrapped. The majority of the cost to wrap a car is in the labor and not the cost of the vinyl itself.

Factors Affecting Car Wrapping Costs

Many factors determine the cost of car wraps, from the vinyl finish and quality to the size and condition of the car. These include:

Color and Finish

3M vinyl wraps for cars come in various finishes, and the price can vary accordingly. Monotone wraps are less expensive, while glittery, multi-colored, and glossy wraps cost more.

Chrome is the most expensive vinyl material and the most difficult to install. It starts at around $6,000 for an average car and the price goes up depending on the vehicle size and the complexity of the application.

Quality of the Vinyl Wrap

The quality of the vinyl wrap is an important factor that affects the overall price of a car wrap. Although higher-quality wraps cost significantly more, they are often a wise investment. That’s because while low-quality wraps may initially look good, they are more prone to cracking, warping around the edges, or developing bubbles that can damage the paint underneath.

If someone wants a vinyl wrap that offers ultraviolet protection, longevity, and durability, a high-quality wrap such as cast vinyl is always the better choice. Although this product is on the higher price end of the scale (e.g., $12 to $16 per foot), it is malleable, waterproof, can be repositioned, and gives excellent ultraviolet protection.

Vinyl Treatments

If a customer selects a vinyl wrap for their car, they might want some form of extra protection to ensure its longevity. Any vinyl treatment will add to the total cost of wrapping.

One popular treatment is a nano-ceramic coating, which acts as a durability enhancer and protects against ultraviolet rays, minor scratches, and water damage. The average cost of nano-ceramic coating ranges from $1,500 to $1,800.

Size of the Vehicle

The size of the car is also important. The larger the vehicle, the more wrapping material is needed, and the higher the wrapping cost.

For instance, if someone has a compact car, the wrapping may cost around $2,000. On the other hand, an SUV may start at $4,000, an average family sedan could cost $3,000, and a luxury sports car can go upwards of $6,000 to $12,000.

Here is a rough breakdown of the quantity of wrap needed according to car sizes:

  • Compact car: forty-nine to fifty-six feet (fifteen to seventeen meters)
  • Mid-sized car: fifty-nine to sixty-six feet (eighteen to twenty meters)
  • Full-sized cars, small SUVs, and small vans: sixty-six to seventy-five feet (twenty to twenty-three meters)

The make and model of the vehicle also matter. Vehicles with complex body shapes cost more because they are difficult to wrap and require a certain level of expertise to install. On the other hand, an average van with flatter surfaces is easier to wrap than a fancy car with intricate curves and jagged edges.

Full or Partial Wrap

The price of car wrapping will also depend on whether a customer wants a full or partial wrap. Here are the average costs depending on how much wrapping is involved:

  • Spoiler wrapping: $300
  • Door handles: $60 each
  • Roof, hood, and trunk: $300 each
  • Side view mirrors: $100 each

Condition of the Car

Last but not least, it’s important to consider any damage, scratching, or chipping of the car’s underlying paint job because this can affect the smoothness of the wrap.

Before the vinyl wrapping can be applied, a vehicle must be prepared, cleaned, and smoothed out. In some cases, a full power wash may be required, which adds an additional cost to the overall bill.

Choose and Wrap

If you are looking to snazz up your car, vinyl wraps are an excellent—and exceedingly popular—way to go. Make sure to weigh your options and choose a design and style that fits your budget.