Well Brian, all I can tell you is that I really am thankful to have Composer. It has opened up new possibilites and made working with these types of documents much less painful. Basically we are just scratching the surface with Composer, but the reponse to how the images are looking has really be excellent. Digital photos are being replaced by much clearer images. Depending on the size of your company I would also think about getting the Network licencse version, this way you can add more seats if needed, and make sure multiple people can learn it. Now from a CAD to Composer learning curve, your service department might find it easier to use than you. It is not SolidWorks,nor should it be. It is a publishing package at heart, so your CAD brain needs to be put on the desk and put your composer brain in. Definately get the training as well!
Another benefit I feel is that you are in total control of when you want to update the "actors" in composer, that along with being able to create images and exploded views so easily has really made me enjoy using it. Use your VAR, ask alot of questions, and you'll be sure to have fun with it as well as get good work done. Remember, this is not a photo realistic rendering package, but you have Photoview 360 for that. Hope that helps!