Coatings Industry News

Main News Page

Lexus Reveals Paint it Took 15 Years to Make

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Comment | More

Lexus has spent the last 15 years developing a new paint color that features an iridescent element, taking a page out of nature's book of butterfly wings.

The new shade, known as Structural Blue, is set to debut in everyday markets on the company’s LC coupe, which is slated to be offered only in limited quantities.

Blue Inside and Outside

According to Lexus, the key inspiration for Structural Blue came in the form of the Morpho butterfly. Even though the insect is most renowned for the hue of its wings, the color actually comes from light interference on the microscopic lattice surface structure. The wings themselves are clear.


The new shade, known as Structural Blue, will debut in everyday markets on the company’s LC coupe, which is slated to be offered only in limited quantities.

Working in collaboration with thin film optical coatings manufacturer VIAVI Solutions Inc., Lexus sought to replicate a similar look in its new pigment, but became snagged in the development process with a coating that was composed of 40 different layers. The team eventually condensed it down to seven, which made it more practical for use on the LC coupe.

The pigment takes eight months to produce, which includes 12 steps and 20 quality inspections, according to Lexus. Upon completion, the paint is applied in a 15-micrometer layer between the primer and a clear coat. What gives Structural Blue that extra flair is the coating’s inherent nanostructures—super small flakes that generate iridescence.

“Conventional pigment paints reflect less than 50 percent of incoming light as a visible blue color, but with Structural Blue the level is nearly 100 percent,” Lexus said in a press release.

The car’s unique shade continues to its interior as an accent color known as Breezy Blue.

Only two LCs can be produced in a single day, according to the company.


Tagged categories: Asia Pacific; Coating Materials; Coatings Technology; Color; EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa); Latin America; North America; Research and development

Comment Join the Conversation:

Sign in to our community to add your comments.

KTA-Tator, Inc. - Corporate Office

Modern Safety Techniques

Fischer Technology Inc.

HoldTight Solutions Inc.

ABKaelin, LLC

Tarps manufacturing, Inc.

Induron Coatings, Inc.

RCG America

Sauereisen, Inc.

SABRE Autonomous Solutions


Technology Publishing Co., 1501 Reedsdale Street, Suite 2008, Pittsburgh, PA 15233

TEL 1-412-431-8300  • FAX  1-412-431-5428  •  EMAIL

The Technology Publishing Network

PaintSquare the Journal of Protective Coatings & Linings Paint BidTracker

EXPLORE:      JPCL   |   PaintSquare News   |   Interact   |   Buying Guides   |   Webinars   |   Resources   |   Classifieds
REGISTER AND SUBSCRIBE:      Free PaintSquare Registration   |   Subscribe to JPCL   |   Subscribe to PaintSquare News
MORE:      About   |   Privacy Policy   |   Terms & Conditions   |   Support   |   Site Map   |   Search   |   Contact Us