Three large suppliers dominate the global market for original-equipment automotive paint -- and the auto industry is content to leave it that way. Auto-paint plant lines are too complex and expensive to consider introducing new suppliers, say paint industry leaders.
Innovating in the paint business is sometimes as much about the process as the product. The segment's big players are spending r&d dollars to take time and cost out of the process of painting new vehicles. Reducing the number of paint coats by combining steps is a major innovation.
With new flagship sedans, Genesis, Lincoln and Volvo are offering alternate definitions of luxury to the overwhelmingly dominant German brands and Lexus. While the exteriors of the Genesis G90, Lincoln Continental and Volvo S90 have garnered plenty of oohs and aahs, designers are making their most powerful statements inside the cabins.