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How Much Does a Car Wrap Cost?

How Much Does a Car Wrap Cost?
February 10, 2022 TheHoth
car wrap cost

How Much Does a Car Wrap Cost?

Do you want a boring, old, plain car? Or do you want to stand out on the road in an eye-catching, branded, vinyl-wrapped vehicle?

If you’re running a business, there is no question. If your car is on the road, you need a wrap, or you’re just leaving business sitting in the passing lane.

Keep reading for your guide to figuring out if the car wrap cost is worth it for your business. Then, once you’re ready to take your vehicle to the next level, contact us and request a more detailed and accurate estimate for your Portland OR car wrap.


An Introduction to Car Vinyl Wrap Cost

Before we get into the specifics, it’s important to note that there are many factors that affect the price of a vehicle wrap. As Car and Driver explains, “…prices vary drastically, based on the size of your car, the complexity of the wrap, and how much labor is required.” For example, if the body of your car has an unusual shape or is more curvaceous than others, it will take more time to properly install the vinyl wrap.

Other factors that may affect the price include your location, the type of materials used, the quality of materials used, whether the wrap has graphics or visuals, the complexity of those graphics, and whether you need help with the car wrap design.


Average Cost to Wrap a Car

Generally speaking, car wraps can start as low as $2000 for a small, two-door vehicle and can go as high as $10,000 or more for a larger, more complex vehicle wrap, depending on the factors outlined above. More typically though, a vehicle wrap will fall within the $2,500 – $5,000 price range. When you take into account the fact that car wraps can last for up to ten years, this is a great investment. And if you’re advertising for those ten years on the road, your investment is certain to pay for itself.

average cost to wrap a car

Partial Vs. Full Car Wrap Cost

As expected, the price of a full car wrap will cost more than a partial wrap or decal. For comparison purposes, a partial wrap is more likely to fall in the $1,000 to $2,000 price range. Decals cost even less. If you’re on a budget, partial wraps or vehicle decals are a great way to promote your business while on the road in a more affordable way. However, you’ll have to be strategic about the placement of the decals or partial wrap to ensure you generate as many views as possible.

Vehicle Wrap or Paint?

There are several different ways you can apply colors and images to a motor vehicle. The most common methods are painting and applying a vinyl wrap. Vinyl wraps are road-grade plastics that adhere to the outside of the vehicle, like a giant waterproof sticker.

Vinyl car wraps are popular for many reasons, including the following benefits:

  • They take less time to apply than a quality paint job.
  • Car wrap removal is easy and won’t damage your vehicle.
  • They are long-lasting, able to last for up to 10 years with proper care and maintenance.
  • They require less ongoing maintenance than a painted car.
  • They act as an extra layer of protection for your vehicle, protecting the original paint against scratches and dings.
  • They can be completely customized with eye-catching graphics, text, and images.
  • They can help increase your brand awareness and make your business appear more professional.
  • Perhaps most importantly, vehicle wraps are an effective, memorable, and cost-effective form of advertising. In fact, a 2019 study found that 64% of U.S. residents surveyed noticed a wrapped vehicle advertising in the last month, and 44% noticed one in the last week!

It’s clear that wraps are a smart choice, especially for businesses looking to take advantage of outdoor advertising opportunities. But how does the cost compare to a paint job?

full car wrap cost

Car Wrap Cost vs Paint

As mentioned above, the cost of car wrapping varies between vehicles. You’ll need to get a direct quote because there isn’t a one size fits all approach. However, we can flesh out the basic factors you should look out for.

The first issue we need to think about when doing a car wrap cost comparison is to consider the current condition of the vehicle(s). A vinyl vehicle wrap should last around ten years, and they are best applied to newish cars without any current paint damage. Chipping paint or broken edges can cause damage to the wrap and cause it to peel.

If there is damage to the underlying paint job, this will have to be repaired before the vehicle wrap can be safely applied. The cost of painting a vehicle can run anywhere between $500 and $5,000, depending on the condition, what you want, and how much paint needs to be applied.

After the paint job, you’ll need to figure out exactly what kind of wrap you want. If it’s a personal vehicle, your own imagination is the only limit! You can even mix and match vinyl and a good paint job.


Popular Vehicle Wrap Colors

One of the exciting things about a vinyl wrap is that there are seemingly endless possibilities when it comes to selecting the design and color of the wrap. Because vehicle wraps are designed using a computer program, you can create unique colors and graphics that would be very difficult and costly to achieve with paint. 

Color can make a bold statement and even trigger emotional responses, so choose the color of your wrap carefully and think about your goals. If your goal is to be on-trend, you can draw inspiration from popular vinyl wrap colors like matte black, deep jewel tones, and shades of chrome. 

However, if your goal is to advertise your business with your vinyl wrap, you should probably stick to colors that represent your brand rather than follow the most recent trends. This will help you generate more brand recognition. 

For more color inspiration, check out our article on how to choose the best colors for your vehicle wrap or truck wrap.


Finishing Touches: Matte Car Wrap Cost

While some people choose to warp their cars for design and advertising, others are more interested in the finish options available. Matte finish vinyl wraps are a popular finish and a growing trend. A matte finish keeps things simple and provides any vehicle with a classy and sophisticated look.

If you’re after a matte finish, painting your car would cost significantly more than wrapping it to achieve the same look. Vinyl matte typically costs between just $2.00 and $3.50 per square foot.


Car Wrap Cost Explained

As for a commercial car wrap, you need to consider the value of advertising that is built into your car wrap pricing. A vehicle on the road can hit up to 70,000 impressions a day! It’s one of the absolute best deals in advertising.

A delivery vehicle can become a moving customer recruitment operation! A “Follow Me!” call to action or a placard that prominently displays your company’s website address can be invaluable. Consider how well your business can convert customers into this type of advertising when you are calculating what type of wrap to get for your commercial vehicles.

The final cost of a vehicle wrap will depend on the size of the wrap, the level of customization, the condition of the vehicles, and if it’s a fleet operation or a single car. They can run from $250 for a pre-printed car sticker, all the way up to $20,000 for a custom-made tour bus wrap.

matte car wrap cost


Truck Wrap Cost and Considerations

The larger the vehicle, the more expensive a full vinyl wrap will be. While a smaller car may only require around 50 feet of vinyl, a small truck will likely need at least 75 to 100 feet. With this in mind, you can expect to pay more for a full truck wrap than you would for a smaller car wrap. 

Ensuring a proper fit for a truck wrap can be tricky, especially for a custom work truck or an entire fleet of trucks. If you want professional results, you should definitely consider hiring a reputable vehicle wrap service that has specific experience with truck wrap design and installation. If you’re going to invest in vehicle advertising to promote your business, you need to put your best foot forward!

Professional vs. DIY Vinyl Wrap Price

A final factor that will affect the price of your vinyl wrap is how you choose to design and install the wrap. 

Although designing or installing the vinyl wrap on your own vehicle might seem like an easy way to cut down on the overall cost, don’t forget to consider the cost of all the software, materials, and tools you will need, as well as the time you’ll need to dedicate to the project. Installing a vehicle wrap is typically a two-person job, so you will also need to find or hire a capable, helping hand. You will also need an enclosed, dust-free workspace to get the job done correctly. 

What’s more, the task of installing the vinyl wrap is technical, takes practice, and leaves little room for error. You generally only have one chance to apply a section of vinyl to the vehicle, and if you get it wrong, you may have to start over! 

If you’re looking for professional, long-lasting results, we recommend hiring professional vehicle wrap specialists to ensure high-quality design and installation.

Protect Your Investment with Proper Vehicle Wrap Maintenance

As mentioned previously, a high-quality vehicle wrap should last you at least ten years. If you’re advertising or promoting your business with the wrap, that’s an incredibly impressive ROI considering how many impressions you can generate in a decade! 

Regular cleaning and maintenance will help you prolong the lifespan of your vehicle wrap and get the most out of your investment. The longer you wait to clean dirt and stains off of your vinyl wrap, the harder they will be to remove– so clean your vehicle regularly! It’s best to wash your vinyl-wrapped vehicle by hand with an automotive sponge and gentle automotive detergent. Be careful about the products you use and avoid solvents or oil-based cleaners. 

Over time, excessive exposure to the elements and pollutants in the air can also degrade your vehicle wrap, so it’s best to store it in a garage whenever possible.

Get Your Wrap On!

Driving around in a plain old car is costing you! You’re missing a giant promotional opportunity for your business. Get the wrap you’ve been dreaming about and start making impressions every time you drive.

We know vehicle wraps. Our Vehicle Graphics Department specializes in custom-made vehicle graphics in Portland, from simple door logos to full-coverage vehicle wraps. Using only high-performance media designed for use on vehicles, our proven installation techniques will professionally brand your vehicle with graphics that outlast our competitors.

We know vehicle paint too! From a simple touch-up to a full-body job, our Paint Department has the experience to have your vehicles looking their finest.