Clear Bra

Within three days of having the shipping protection removed from my new S4 I had the car at the shop having window tinting and a clear bra applied.Protecting the cars finish and interior were high priorities at this stage.The clear bra took a bit of research since a number of companies offered similar kits.

  • (Company/Guarantee/Material/Thickness
    /Headlight Thickness/Pre-cut)
  • X-Pel/4yrs/3M/8mil/40mil/yes/
  • CLEAR BRA/3yrs/ /12mil/20or40mil/no/
  • StonGard/3yrs*/ /9mil/80mil/yes/ *headlight only w/ fullbody kit or $15
  • ChipGuard/3yrs/3M/8mil/20mil/yes/
  • InvincaShield/?/ /?/?/yes/
  • ArmourFend/3yrs/ /?/?/?/
X-pel and Clear Bra provided the quickest, most thorough, and interested responses to my inquiry. Both win major points in my mind for customer service. Based upon posts to the Audiworld forum, and the lack of response I experienced, I don’t think the people at Invincashield realize they are losing customers to their ample competition. I also did not receive a response to my inquiry post at ArmourFend’s web site.It’s interesting to note that even though X-pel offers the thinnest material they offer the longest protection guarantee. I deduced from that that 8 mil is sufficiently thick.CLEAR BRA is custom fit to each car whereas X-pel is pre-cut. I like the custom fit idea though they have no place nearby for me to get the work done. I would have to rely on the skill of a window tinting shop.

ChipGuard’s guarantee only applies if they do the work in their shop, located in Toronto, Canada.

StonGard’s headlight guarantee comes free if you also get a body kit, otherwise it is $15. Their e-mail response had several misspelled words and appeared to have been typed rather quickly, I didn’t feel they really wanted me as a customer. “Sign of poor customer service?”

Since they all sell the same 3M material I think the choice boils down to who offers the best customer support and guarantee. Custom fit or precut? That seems to be an individual preference thing. I went with X-pel mainly because I couldn’t see paying the extra stonguard wanted for what seemed to be very little more coverage. I was very happy with my dealing with X-pel. I also thought about CLEAR BRA but there wasn’t anyplace nearby to get the work done.

I’m happy with the product I have. I like the 4 year warranty they offer and their price. I’ve had it on almost a year now. There is nowhere on the car that has the film that has suffered chipping. That said, the coverage could be a little bit better. Considering how long this stuff will be on for, the extra $ to get slightly more coverage might be worth it. I would have to look hard again at the numbers to see.

Regardless of which company you decide to go with, this stuff is great.

Long-term Report:
This material is still holding up well. The area of my hood and grill where this material was applied continues to look great. My only regret remains not getting a kit that covered the front grill section a little more thoroughly.

Audi B5 S4 Information and Testing