BASF's Alubeam Liquid Metal Automotive Paint
By Tim Wright
Daimler and BASF Coatings have joined forces to develop the Alubeam paint for the F 800 Style Mercedes Benz. BASF's Liquid Metal basecoat immerses the car in a radiant deep gloss, making it look as if it were made of chrome rather than painted. The research vehicle's latest appearance was at the Geneva Motor Show. The new coating gleams like liquid metal. Alubeam stretches around the body like a metallic skin, lending the F 800 Style coated in gray metallic a highly dynamic note. The integration of a special-effect pigment into a waterborne paint system is the key to the unique metallic look, according to the company. Liquid Metal paints use aluminum flakes as effect pigments. For the latest generation of Liquid Metal paints, BASF uses so-called PVDA pigments (physical vapor deposited aluminum). As a result, the paint has a more uniform appearance and seems to stretch across the car’s body like a metallic skin, emphasizing the important lines and contours of the vehicle design more significantly, the company said. The surfaces can reflect light with greater intensity and are given additional gloss. The resulting metallic look has an intensity that could not previously be achieved with conventional metallic paints. BASF Coatings’ Liquid Metal is available today as an environmentally friendly waterborne basecoat and complies with the required specifications for adhesion and weathering. Add-on parts can be painted in the color of the vehicle as well.
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