Matte finishes are the new trend at the 2010 Paris Motor Show

Article by Christian Andrei, on October 1, 2010

Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel thinks that matte cars are “cool” and apparently it’s a growing trend in the luxury auto industry. Last year, US actress Lindsay Lohan stepped out of a matte-finished black Rolls-Royce Phantom from Bayerische Motoren Werke AG's ultra-luxury brand.

Vettel, who has won seven Formula One races and is only 23 years old, said that matte cars “come across as a bit aggressive.” In fact, the dull-paint trend is evident at the Paris Motor Show.

Six matte cars will be showcased by Daimler AG's Mercedes-Benz brand, including the 187,425 euro ($255,000) gull- wing SLS in cashmere white.

Meanwhile, BMW will have a 69,400 euro M3 sedan in frozen gray in its booth. Historically, cars for racing were given a matte finish to reduce glare for the driver who shouldn’t have to be bothered by the glow of animated billboards and flashing neon.

One example is BMW's aluminum-clad 328 sports car that won the Mille Miglia race in 1940. To make the cars matte, vinyl foils were applied over the finish. However, dull paints are a new occurrence on modern cars.

The dull paints are technically more complex than standard high-gloss paints and it can be difficult to repair cars that have them. Opting for a matte finish won’t come cheap. Volkswagen AG's Lamborghini charges up to 20,000 euros for a matte finish. [via autonews - sub. required]

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