New Technologies Help Drive Automotive Finishing Coatings Market

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It is clear that the automotive refinishing market is always looking for new solutions and that coating manufacturers are developing new innovations.

Patricia Morschel, Vice President, Marketing and Business Operations, Global Refinish for Axalta, reported that there is an ever-increasing demand for complete coating solutions that not only perform well and increase productivity, but also environmentally friendly coatings.

“This is an area of ​​continued investment for Axalta,” added Morschel. “Cycle time is of the essence for large bodyshells and has been an area of ​​particular interest to us when developing new products. In North America, our new ultra-productive Spies Hecker one-visit water-based application system eliminates drying time between coats.

Joel Johnson, Vice President, Automotive Finishing Coatings for BASF, noted that the market is constantly changing.

“As the auto repair market continues to evolve, so do the needs of our customers. It is our duty to be innovative in everything we do so that we can meet these needs, ”added Johnson. “We do this by continuing to invest in our solutions and ensuring that our technology remains aligned with advanced vehicle technologies, including ADAS. We also leverage our OEM relationships to ensure that our customers will be supported and enjoy a prosperous future. As the industry continues to adopt new technologies, we will be ready to meet the demand for new solutions.

Patrick Bourguignon, director of AkzoNobel The Automotive and Specialty Coatings business said digital tools are benefiting body shops.

“At AkzoNobel, three years ago we launched a digital shop floor production measurement system called Carbeat. This cloud-based digital tool allows the body shop to track work in progress, identify and eliminate bottlenecks, and provide their customers with status updates on repairs. real time, ”said Bourguignon.

“Using traditional coatings at lower temperatures to repair vehicles with batteries and hybrid powertrains has a significant impact on performance and reduces body efficiency, as these coatings take much longer to cure. and thus slow down the overall repair process, ”added Bourguignon. “At AkzoNobel, we have developed vehicle topcoats capable of curing at considerably lower temperatures, as well as low-energy, heat-free products (using ultraviolet (UV) light), which have double the advantage of not only improving efficiency, but also reducing energy consumption, CO2 emissions and costs.

Chancey Hagerty, PPG Vice President, Global Auto Repair, discussed the role of digitization in auto repair.

“At PPG, we see and recognize how digital solutions are transforming customer experiences and business operations all around us,” said Hagery. “As a global leader in automotive coatings and digital color matching technologies, PPG has used our extensive cross-industry expertise to develop PPG LINQ – the first industry-wide connectivity platform designed to improve performance. overall customer experience, partner relationships and internal store operations body. Customers of Refinish Body Shops will be able to streamline their entire repair process using the cloud-based PPG LINQ platform and its interconnected digital hardware, software and innovative services. which will lead to more consistent and profitable results.

The first set of PPG LINQ technologies and services will begin to be available in early 2022 as part of a multi-year rollout. The PPG MOONWALK System, PPG’s automated paint mixing system for body shops, marked the first of many customer-centric innovations that are part of PPG’s digital ecosystem powered by PPG LINQ.

Launch of new products

New products are the lifeblood of any industry, and the field of automotive refinishing is always on the lookout for new developments. Johnson pointed out that BASF has introduced the Glasurit 100 line of water-based paints.

“We are committed to innovation and continuous improvement,” Johnson said. “Our customers benefit from an evolving portfolio designed to meet and exceed the needs of our customers. One of BASF’s latest innovations is the Glasurit 100 range, which offers the fastest water-based application process and the most durable solution on the market. Its modern and innovative basecoat technology, advanced pigmentation and color matching, and state-of-the-art spectrophotometer color recovery set new standards in the industry. Some of the many benefits of using the Glasurit 100 Series are a streamlined process with non-stop wet-on-wet application with streamlined three and four coat finishes; faster application with an average time saving of 35%; and coating efficiency – on average, the Glasurit 100 range goes 20% further than competitive products.

“BASF recognizes the importance of the durability of the Glasurit 100 range which has the lowest VOC values ​​on the market, well below all global VOC requirements,” Johnson added. “Not only will customers save on processing times and material consumption, they will also improve their environmental footprint. “

“We also launched Refinity, a cloud-based platform that provides single access to our color, learning, business management, support and trusted partner solutions,” said Johnson. “With a platform, password and seamless digital solution, customers will have easy access to a variety of tools that will help them work more efficiently. “

Recent innovations from Axalta include Spies Hecker Permahyd Hi-TEC basecoat, which Morschel says is the most advanced aqueous basecoat technology available on the market today.

“Our scientists have created a revolutionary paint formula that allows water and pigments to work together to achieve the desired look in fewer coats,” added Morschel. “Permahyd 2K sealant, which received a 2021 Edison Award, is also a time-saving water-based application system component. Using this sealer cuts sealant application time to five minutes or less compared to 20 minutes with traditional products. And, last but not least, we recently introduced the very first water-based transparent varnish, which reduces harmful VOC emissions by up to 60%. Using this application system repairs can be completed 55% faster than competitive products.

Morschel also highlighted Axalta’s Advanced Color Proofing, the latest enhancement to Axalta’s proprietary color recovery software, ColorNet.

“Customers in North America who operate Advanced Color Proofing benefit from 3D modeling, which allows bodybuilders to see paint color renderings on vehicles from multiple angles and digitally rotate the view to determine color matching.” and the possibility of fusion between the panels, ”Morschel said. “Using this enhancement saves our customers time and materials and maximizes shop productivity by reducing the need to mix paint and create test panels.

“Another tool that provides an exact match of a color formula is Fillion Technologies’ automated Daisy Wheel, which is the most productive painting process currently available,” added Morschel. “With the Daisy dial, color formulas are blended with precision of one-hundredth of a gram, and it’s easy to use and frees up valuable time for bodybuilders by allowing them to focus on other critical steps in the process. finishing. “

“PPG is committed to providing sustainable and technologically advanced solutions to meet the needs of collision repair shops today and in the future,” said Hagerty. “In addition to the launch of our digital end-to-end PPG LINQ solution and the PPG MOONWALK automated paint mixing system, we will be launching several new refinishing products designed to improve the productivity and cycle time of collision repair centers. Details on these new products will be announced as they become available in various markets. “

Bourguignon indicated that low cooking / air drying products based on aspartic chemistry are also under development.

“AkzoNobel recently launched Sikkens Autoclear Aerodry and Lesonal Ultra Air Clear in the EMEA market. vehicles, ”he said.

“Sikkens Autoclear Aerodry was developed to help body shops maximize their productivity and their need for flexibility. To free up space for other work, companies can deploy the previous vehicle or panel after a five-minute flash-off and allow it to air dry for 45 minutes. But if meeting a tight deadline is the problem, bodybuilders can opt to bake for five minutes at 60 ° C, ”said Bourguignon.

“Sikkens Autoclear Xpress, recently launched in the North American market, offers the latest cutting edge developments in rapid curing technology. It is designed to speed up production and reduce the cycle time of any high performance body shop. We have introduced this product for use on Autowave and Autobase Plus, with the aim of offering customers an energy efficient varnish that improves the competence of their business.


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