CTS 2003-2005



Removal & Installation

GM W-body vehicles use a unitized body with a separate sub-frame supporting the engine and transaxle. The inner fender panels and the radiator support are also integral parts of the body. Anti-corrosion materials have been applied to the interior surfaces of some metal panels. When servicing these panels, disturbed areas should be properly re-coated with a service type anti-corrosion material.

The front fenders on W-Body vehicles basically bolt to the body. There are numerous bolts and screws that must be removed, some hidden by trim pieces. There will be some minor variations to these procedures, depending on model, vehicle year and trim level, but fender removal is reasonably straightforward.

Fender and door edges should be covered with masking tape for protection against chipping.

  1. Remove the headlamp on the side where the fender is being removed (Buick only).
  3. Remove the hood using the procedures in the section.
  5. Remove the hood hinge.
  7. If the fender is being removed for replacement, the hood hinge will need to be removed and transferred to the replacement fender. Note that the hood hinge is bolted and spot welded in one place to the front fender. To remove the hood hinge, use the following procedure.
    1. Remove the bolts from the hinge.
    3. Use a center punch to accurately mark the center of the spot weld.
    5. Drill out the spot weld using a 3 / 8 inch drill bit.
    7. Remove the hood hinge from the fender.

  9. Remove the front fender liner.
  11. Remove the screws retaining the front fender to the front bumper fascia.
  13. This vehicle uses a separate piece of rocker panel finish molding that mounts to the lower part of the front fender. It is retained by screws at the bottom of the molding. Remove the fasteners and remove it from the fender.
  15. Remove the bolts from the fender at the door hinge pillar, the rocker panel and engine compartment side rail.
  17. Remove the fender from the vehicle.
  19. Installation is the reverse of the removal procedure.