WHAT IS VEHICLE GRADING?

The aim of the NAMA grading scheme at its highest level is to deliver key benefits to all the parties involved in the transaction. It is designed to facilitate the buying and selling process of a used car in a condition that is better understood by both parties. With a better understanding of a vehicle condition it should be possible to more accurately anticipate a selling price that is consistent with the typically observed prices for similar cars in the same trading period, subject to similar market conditions.

The Grades

The scheme consists of 5 grades, termed 1 to 5. There is also an unclassified grade for vehicles that are badly accident damaged or require high levels of repair. Also auctions and vendors may choose to give certain cars an unclassified grade probably if they are very high mileage or old.

Grade 1

  • Vehicle panels may have minor defects including dents up to 30mm, scratches up to 25mm
  • Chips up to 10mm on glass
  • Bumpers may have areas of scratches up to 100mm
  • Wheels can be affected with scratches or corrosion
  • Interior may have minor scuffing due to wear & tear and replacement of minor trim items may also be required

Grade 2

  • The vehicle may have numerous defects as in Grade 1 plus 1 of the following
  • Paint defects larger than 25mm on a panel or 100 mm on a bumper
  • Dent larger than 30mm
  • Defect to glass larger than 10mm
  • Significant trim / part could also be required


Grade 3

  • The vehicle may have defects as in Grade 1 & 2 plus it could also include or have a combination of
  • Up to 5 panels with paint defects larger than 25mm or 100mm on a bumper
  • Up to 3 panels / bumpers affected with dents larger than 30mm
  • Significant trims or parts could also be required

Grade 4

  • The vehicle may have defects as in grade 1, 2 & 3 it could also include or have a combination of
  • A panel with significant damage i.e. over 30% or a significant crack to a bumper
  • Up to 10 panels with paint defects larger than 25mm or 100mm on a bumper
  • Up to 7 panels / bumpers affected with dents larger than 30mm
  • Multiple trims or parts could also be required

Grade 5

  • The vehicle may have defects as in grade 1, 2 ,3 & 4 it could also include
  • More than 2 panels / bumpers with significant cracks or damage i.e. over 30% of the panel
  • 8 or more panels / bumpers affected with dents larger than 30mm
  • 11 panels or more with paint defects larger than 25 mm or 100mm on a bumper
  • Up to 1 structural panel* with significant damage i.e. over 30% of the panel (*roof & rear quarters)
  • Significant tears, holes or cuts in convertible roof

Grade U

  • Vehicles in this grade could fall into the following categories
  • Recorded items that exceed the criteria of Grade 5
  • Substantial accident damage – visible substantial accident damage
  • Major parts missing – multiple significant parts missing from either the interior or exterior
  • Multiple unrecorded items – vehicles which are uneconomical to appraise


Notes on the above

U Grade - The use of ‘U’ grade limits the amount of damage that can be recorded against a grade 5 vehicle and keeps this band tighter.

Component/Damage Severity Scores

An appraiser should be proficient in recording objectively the damage/severity of component. However, it is likely to be the method of repair that will actually determine the effect of the item of damage on the overall value of the vehicle. This would need to be determined by an appropriately qualified individual.

The following repair methodology should be applied

SMART (Small Medium Area Repair Technique) Repairs:

  • PDR – (Paintless Dent Removal)
  • Alloy wheel refurbishment
  • Minor paint repair (bumper corner, mirror, moulding etc)
  • Glass repair
  • Minor trim repair
  • Touch in type repair.

Minor Body Shop Repair (Scratches, Chips & Scuffs)

Body panel or bumper requiring complete repaint only, including preparation, priming, colour coat and if necessary, lacquer.

Major Body Shop Repair (Dents, holes & Gouging)

Body panel or bumper requiring complete repaint and filler repair, including, preparation, reshaping, filler, primer, colour coat and if necessary, lacquer.

Information Only – 0 Points

Some information will be included on the appraisal that will relate to items that do not warrant a score such as light scratching which will normally polish out or to replacement parts (e.g. exhausts) that do not form part of the evaluation of cosmetic condition report.