The Climate Windscreen From Volkswagen

Winter is here and every morning many motorists thus face the same problem: a frozen windscreen. Neither ice scraper nor de-icing spray provides the perfect solution. Volkswagen is offering a genuine alternative with the climate windscreen. It heats up without the use of any filament wires, thus providing perfect visibility. Any renewed misting or icing up is also prevented.

Heated windows are not a new invention in vehicle manufacturing. For decades, fine filaments inserted into the glass as an optional extra have been preventing windows from misting up and ensuring that any layer of ice quickly thaws. When facing oncoming evening traffic, in particular, or when the sun is very low, the fine metal wires can, however, become visible to the driver.

With the climate windscreen, Volkswagen has found an excellent solution for perfect visibility. In this wire-free system a wafer-thin electrically conductive layer of silver within the laminated glass provides the required heat by converting electric current. Consuming no more than 400 to 500 watts, the window quickly warms up and thus becomes a defrosting aid. Within the bottom section of the windscreen, invisible from the outside, there are also filaments that act as windscreen wiper heaters to prevent the wiper blades from freezing to the glass. Volkswagen is offering the wire-free heated and infrared-reflecting windscreen as an optional extra for the Golf, Golf Sportsvan, Tiguan, Sharan, Passat and Passat Variant models. Prices start at €340, depending on model.

However, it is not only during the cold winter months that the innovative windscreen is a help. In the summer, the thin layer of silver acts as a passive heat shield. As it reflects up to 60 per cent of the summer heat, it is able to reduce the inside temperature by up to 15 degrees more than conventional glass with green tinting. As a result, the air-conditioning system is able to cool a car that has been parked in the sun down to a comfortable temperature much more quickly.

New Messe Frankfurt Calendar For 2017: Digital Scenes Made Of Components And Parts

The future has right of way at Messe Frankfurt. And the Mobility &Logistics business unit continues to invest in an international portfolio of fairs, events and congresses. In addition to the expansion of the international Automechanika brand with new trade fairs in Birmingham, Jeddah (Saudi Arabia) and Ho Chi Minh City (Vietnam), Messe Frankfurt has also made acquisitions in the automotive sector. The first Busworld Russia powered by Autotrans took place in October 2016 while, a month before, a new B2C event was launched in South Africa, the South African Festival of Motoring at the Kyalami Grand Prix Circuit. By taking over Motobike Istanbul, which was held for the eighth time in February 2016, Messe Frankfurt has strengthened its position in Turkey.

Messe Frankfurt has developed two new event concepts for the transport and logistics sectors. Scalex is a trade fair for supply chain and logistics, which made its successful debut in Kenya in March 2016 and which will also be held in South Africa in 2017.

With Hypermotion, Trade Fair and Integrated Conferences on Intelligent Systems and Solutions for Transport, Mobility, Logistics and Digital Infrastructure, Messe Frankfurt is closing a gap in the national and international market for mobility fairs by launching the first platform with digital transformation as the superordinate theme. The first Hypermotion will be held in Frankfurt am Main from 20 to 22 November 2017.

The ‘Events driving Mobility 2017’ calendar illustrates the broad spectrum of subjects covered by events of the Mobility & Logistics business unit and has been published in a limited edition for the business partners of Messe Frankfurt.

The calendar has been produced in cooperation with photographer and artist Rafael Neff who has created fantastic and imaginative scenes using numerous assemblies and parts of renowned manufacturers.

Comprising over 9,000 individual images, the scenes bring together a broad spectrum of different components. The mega cities are made up of transmission parts, valves, pistons, cylinder and spherical roller bearings, filters and camshafts. Thus, the corrugated glass surface of a headlamp is transformed into planets, car-shine cotton becomes cloud formations, sintered parts morph into shoals of fish, servo controls into submarines and cleaning brushes into a palace garden.

The digital version of the calendar can be found at

You can find more information at:,, and in our blog

Audi Developing Piloted Driving With Artificial Intelligence

Artificial intelligence (AI) is a key technology for piloted driving – that’s why Audi and strong partners from the electronics industry are jointly developing game-changing know-how in the field of machine learning. At the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas Audi is presenting the Audi Q7 deep learning concept, a piloted driving car made possible thanks to collaboration with NVIDIA.

In conjunction with the CES keynote address by NVIDIA, Audi is demonstrating the intelligence of the Q7 deep learning concept on a specially designed, variable open area for piloted driving. The car orients itself by means of a front camera with 2 megapixel resolution, and the camera communicates with a NVIDIA Drive PX 2 processing unit, which in turn controls the steering with high precision. The high-performance controller is specially engineered for piloted driving applications.

Serving as the core of the software are deep neural networks that experts from Audi and NVIDIA have trained specifically for autonomous driving and recognition of dynamic traffic control signals. Beginning with a human driver at the wheel, the Audi Q7 deep learning concept gained a limited familiarity with the route and the surroundings, by means of observation and with the help of additional training cameras. That established a correlation between the driver’s reactionsand the occurrences detected by the cameras.

So during the subsequent demonstration drives the car is able to understand instructions, like from a temporary traffic signal, interpret them right away and act as the situation requires. When a corresponding signal appears, the concept car immediately changes the driving strategy and selects either the short route or the long one. The design of the system is so robust that it can even cope with disturbance variables such as changing weather and light conditions. It masters its tasks day and night, and even in direct sunlight or harsh artificial light.

The learning methods used for the Audi Q7 deep learning concept are essentially very much like those of deep reinforcement learning. This method was the underlying principle behind the Audi presence at the Conference and Workshop on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), an AI event held in Barcelona in December. There, the neural networks – which are similar to the human brain – were also trained for a particular application. While the 1:8 scale model car at NIPS learned how to park through trial and error, during the training runs the network of the Audi Q7 deep learning concept receives concrete data it finds relevant – in other words, it learns from the driver.

Artificial intelligence is a game-changing key technology for piloted driving – of this Audi is convinced, which is why it is working closely with the leaders in the electronics industry. Together with its partners, Audi is evaluating various approaches and methods for machine learning. The aim is to always find the optimal method for the specific application being studied. Collaborative efforts by companies in the IT and automotive industries are also of tremendous value for future implementation in concepts and production cars.

With its impressive systems expertise, NVIDIA is considered the worldwide semiconductor industry’s biggest, most capable player. Audi has been working with the manufacturer since 2005. The Audi A4 was using a NVIDIA chip as early as 2007, and two years later NVIDIA technology allowed the Audi A8 to achieve a new dimension in visual displays. The Modular Infotainment Platform (MIB), which was introduced in 2013, featured the Tegra 2 processor from NVIDIA. And the MIB2 followed in the Audi Q7 in 2015, running with an NVIDIA T 30 processor.

The platform’s next level of development is the MIB2+ – which is premiering this year in the new generation Audi A8. Its key element is the Tegra K1 processor, which makes new functions possible and has the impressive computing power needed to support several high-resolution displays – including the second-generation Audi virtual cockpit. Onboard and online information will merge, making the car part of the cloud to a greater degree than ever.

Together with the MIB2+, the central driver assistance controller (zFAS) in the new Audi A8 is also making its series debut. The K1 processor is also on board and in future the X1 processor from NVIDIA. Audi and NVIDIA are planning to intensify their long-standing partnership by combining NVIDIA’s development environment expertise for AI applications with Audi’s wealth of experience in the area of vehicle automation.

Another Audi key partner is Mobileye, whose image processing chip is also integrated in the zFAS. The high-tech Israeli company is the world leader in the field of image recognition for automotive applications. Mobileye is already supplying a camera for use in a range of Audi models – the Audi Q7, the A4/A5 series and the new Q5 – and the product’s image processing software can recognise a large number of objects. These include lane markings, vehicles, traffic signs and pedestrians. Today, defining the characteristics needed to clearly classify objects is still done manually.

In the new Audi A8, Audi and Mobileye are demonstrating the next level of development – with image recognition that uses deep learning methods for the first time. This significantly reduces the need for manual training methods during the development phase. Deep neural networks enable the system to be self-learning when determining which characteristics are appropriate and relevant for identifying the various objects. With this methodology the car can even recognise empty driving spaces, an important prerequisite for safe, piloted driving.

The traffic jam pilot function will be offered in a series production model for the first time in the new A8. This is the first piloted driving function in series production that will enable the driver to let the vehicle take over full control at times. With this step the stage is set to begin the next decade with higher levels of automation in a growing number of driving situations.

New DNA Hydrographic Activator

For all you Hydro dip shops that struggle to find a commercially available activator that works and at a decent price… here it is. Available to purchase now through your local DNA Distributor, or online.

DNAâ„¢ Hydrographic Activator is a professional grade product, for activating hydrographic films. Designed to liquidise even the most demanding of films with ease, producing reliable wrapping ability, and perfect rinse qualities. DNA Hydrographic Activator is very economical as only a single application is required at low air pressure. this equals less product use, less film distortion and better dipping results.

-Fast acting formula
-Great colour retention
-Easy rinse technology
-Flatter film finishes

Manufactured in a by DNA™ Custom Paints, Australia’s leading custom paints manufacturer. This is a quality activator built from the ground up so you are getting a quality product with no shortcuts taken or critical ingredients left out!

Priced so well you can focus on dipping rather than trying to be a backyard chemist! You can find your local distributor and order online.

Standox Calendar 2017: A Meeting Of Generations

Generations of Colour is the new Standox wall calendar for 2017. The 12 images are like a meeting of automotive generations, with classic cars shown alongside current models. It’s a portrayal of shapes and colours that will appeal not just to car enthusiasts.

Contrasting classic models with today’s reincarnations has a certain appeal – it may conjure nostalgia for cars driven in the past. Developments in technology and the defining spirit of each era are apparent in the changing shape of the bodywork. In many cases, the classic and current model really only share the same name, but sometimes the family resemblance is unmistakable, such as with the Porsche 911.

These resemblances are particularly marked when car manufacturers have deliberately adopted special design elements from the original classic, as is the case for the VW Beetle, the Fiat 500 or the Mercedes SLS. What is also noticeable in this family reunion is that today’s models are all distinctly larger.

This automotive leap in time is the central theme of the Standox 2017 calendar Generations of Colour, created by photographer Ramon Wink from Bad Ems, Germany. Prompted by a good dose of irony, all images also share another theme. They are all photographed in backdrops that are considered to be typically German: a Bavarian beer garden, a traditional sausage stand, a romantic snow-covered Christmas market. Sometimes it is only something small that gives the images their German character, for example a couple of German Shepherd dogs, cardboard cut-outs from the Mainz Carnival or the dense thicket of signs seen on German motorways.

For over 30 years, Standox has commissioned renowned German photographers to create the brand’s wall calendar. It is not commercially available, distributed only to customers and friends of the Wuppertal refinish brand.

Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Double Wing Door 1956 with a Mercedes-Benz 300 SLS Double Wing Door 2011


VW Beetle Bus T1 1956 with a VW Bus 2016

Mazda Develops “Soul Red Crystal” Colour

Mazda Motor Corporation has developed a new body colour, Soul Red Crystal, to symbolise its ‘KODO – Soul of Motion’ design. The new colour will debut on the Next-Gen Mazda CX-5, on sale in Japan from February next year, before being rolled out to new and existing models. In the belief that “colour is an element of form,” Mazda has focused on developing colours that highlight the beauty and quality of its KODO designs.

Soul Red Crystal is an advanced version of Soul Red that balances vibrant energy and vividness with clear depth and gloss. It boasts 20 per cent greater colour saturation and 50 per cent more depth than Soul Red, for a fresher, lustrous transparence. The paint retains a simple three-layer structure comprising clear, translucent and reflective coats, but represents an evolution of Mazda’s Takuminuri painting technology.

Takuminuri gives mass-production vehicles a precise, high-quality finish that looks like it has been hand-sprayed by a master craftsman. It has been used previously with Soul Red and Machine Gray. The new paint’s translucent layer features a newly developed highly saturated red pigment for a richer red. In addition to high-brilliance, extremely thin aluminum flakes, the reflective coat features light-absorbing flakes that intensify shaded areas and make it possible to achieve a depth of colour that previously required two layers.

The aluminum flakes were made a uniform size, the consistency of the paint was enhanced and a technique to shrink the volume of paint during the drying process was employed. This results in even, smooth coverage of the aluminum and light-absorbing flakes on the car’s body and more precise control of light reflection, making for a substantially deeper and more vivid colour.

This coat structure technology combines colouring and functionality, enabling Mazda to apply Soul Red Crystal, a designer colour that would usually require more layers, in the same environmentally friendly paint shops that produce its regular body colours. In the belief that “colour is an element of form,” Mazda will continue to develop new colours and paint technologies, and work to be a brand that maintains a strong emotional connection with customers.

BASF And Hyundai Motor Showcase RN30 Concept Car At K Fair

A new concept vehicle jointly developed by BASF and Hyundai Motor combines key solutions from the chemical industry with purposeful aerodynamic design and specialized high-performance technologies. Both companies will present outstanding features of the RN30 Concept Car at the 2016 K Fair in Dusseldorf from 19-26 October.

“We are very proud to be a vital part of the RN30,” said Raimar Jahn, President of Performance Materials at BASF. “Based on our great partnership and our innovation power, Hyundai Motor has invited us to demonstrate the capabilities of our materials in this unique concept.” This new Concept Car was created to offer pure driving pleasure on the race track for everybody. BASF’s material solutions helped Hyundai to realize even the most daring design ideas based on its impressive product portfolio and car enthusiasm.

Lightweight plastics for efficient performance

As a racing machine designed for race tracks, it is essential for the RN30 to be lightweight and have a low center of gravity in order to swiftly cover the steep corners of the track. While high-performance cars generally contain carbon fiber reinforced polymer (CFRP) to reduce weight, the partners moved away from the fixed idea of using CFRP. Instead they explored new lightweight materials by BASF suitable for high-performance cars as alternative.

For example, due to their outstanding flowability, BASF’s Elastolit® rigid integral foam and reaction injection molding (RIM) systems developed for body panels permit the realization of even those most challenging designs like the fender and spoiler of the RN30. Combining high quality with low weight, they can even directly be painted thanks to their Class A surface. The RN30 also features semi-structural sandwich solutions for the trunk floor, providing a considerable weight reduction as well as a highly efficient production process. BASF’s Elastoflex® E, a spray impregnation polyurethane for very light and stiff sandwich structures consisting of a long-fiber reinforced surface layer and a paper honeycomb is the ideal material for these applications.

Durable materials for maximum safety

When driving at maximum speed, drivers have to rely on the uncompromising quality of durable and reliable materials. BASF’s Infinergy® is the world’s first expanded thermoplastic polyurethane. Combined with an elastic coating it is used in the roll bar padding of the RN30 because of its long term durability and outstanding resilience. But speed is nothing without control. Thus, fast cars also need high performance brake systems. BASF has developed a breakthrough technology, Hydraulan® 406 ESI, which exceeds all technical challenges and fulfills demanding legislative requirements by extending the durability of the brake elastomer. 

For the ever more complex and compact electronic assemblies of the RN30, BASF’s new Ultramid® Advanced N allows for miniaturization, functional integration and freedom of design. It can be used in electronic components as well as structural parts near the engine and the gearbox in contact with hot, aggressive media and different fuels.

An interior design optimized for racing experiences

During the interior design process, RN30 designers and racing experts from Hyundai Motorsport worked closely together to deliver a layout that helps the driver focus his attention more intensely on driving. A bucket seat for racing, which perfectly fits the driver’s body and an integrated roll cage, which increases the vehicle body strength, protect the driver in precarious situations.

For those parts with complex geometry such as the seat shell and pan, BASF offers Ultracom®, a thermoplastic composite system for parts with continuous fiber reinforcement in injection-molded structures. This allows the seat to be lighter while still maintaining optimum strength and rigidity. The seat shell and pan owe their final shape to a matched combination of semi-finished products like tapes or laminates and injection-molding compounds. In the realization of such parts, BASF’s unique simulation tool Ultrasim®, as well as its Ultratestâ„¢ parts testing facilities and processing technologies play a major role across the entire process chain of seat component production. 

Efficient heat management and natural fibers contribute to sustainability

Race cars are reduced to the maximum to avoid any unnecessary ballast weight such as air conditioning. Keeping the car still cool and comfortable can be achieved with heat management solutions like BASF’s near infrared-reflective films, protecting windows of the RN30 against solar heat. The entirely organic and transparent film has an advantage over metal films, in that it is designed to filter out only infrared rays while allowing other rays such as light, GPS and telephone signals to pass through. 

The water-based binder Acrodur® strengthens the natural fibers and enables an environmentally compatible, dimensionally stable and, above all, lightweight solution for car composites such as dashboards and door panels of the RN30 which can be finished in various ways for high-quality design. 

Color and coating solutions for unlimited design options

Color inspires imagination and individualization. BASF’s waterborne ColorPro IC “Performance Blue” is one of the latest generation of individual colors with broad color spectrum, flexibility and unmatched quality. It gives the RN30 its dazzling appearance. In addition, BASF’s innovative iGloss® clearcoat with an advanced easy-to-clean effect helps to minimize microscratches significantly. In the interior, BASF’s patented transfer coating technology valure™ produces high-quality surfaces with almost limitless design options as well as unique material combinations with a wide variety of flexible substrates, like leather, in automotive interiors. The coated surface remains breathable and feels soft.

From concept to reality: experiencing chemistry-driven solutions in the New Generation Hyundai i30

The New Generation Hyundai i30 – “a car for everyone” and available in early 2017 – reveals how BASF’s solutions convert concepts into reality. BASF’s engineering plastic Ultramid® still sets standards in innovation and global availability in established plastic applications for powertrain and chassis such as the transmission oil pan, cylinder head cover and air intake manifold in the i30.

BASF is a key partner to the automotive industry in efforts to reduce harmful emissions from cars with combustion engines. The EMPROâ„¢ TWC (Three-Way Conversion) catalyst technology used in the i30 significantly outperforms conventional three-way conversion catalysts in the conversion of hydrocarbons (HC), carbon monoxide (CO) and nitrogen oxides (NOx) over a wide range of conditions. 

Catamold® is a feedstock for metal injection molding technology. It is used in the production of dual clutch transmission parts for the i30 because it is 50 per cent lighter than traditional precision casting feedstocks and provides greater design freedom. Cellasto® microcellular polyurethane elastomers are used to make jounce bumpers and top mounts. They help to minimize noise, vibrations and harshness and in that way enhance driving comfort in the i30.

Click the image for a higher quality version


Singapore Hosts First Driverless Taxi

nuTonomy, a developer of software for self-driving cars, has launched a public trial of a robo-taxi service. The trial, which will continue on an on-going basis, is being held within Singapore’s one-north business district, where nuTonomy has been conducting daily autonomous vehicle (AV) testing since April.

Select Singapore residents will be invited to use nuTonomy’s ride-hailing smartphone app to book a no-cost ride in a nuTonomy self-driving car that employs the company’s software, which has been integrated with high-performance sensing and computing components. The rides will be provided in a Renault Zoe or Mitsubishi i-MiEV electric vehicle that nuTonomy has specially configured for autonomous driving. An engineer from nuTonomy will ride in the vehicle to observe system performance and assume control if needed to ensure passenger comfort and safety.

Throughout the trial, nuTonomy will collect and evaluate valuable data related to software system performance, vehicle routing efficiency, the vehicle booking process, and the overall passenger experience. This data will enable nuTonomy to refine its software in preparation for the launch of a widely-available commercial robo-taxi service in Singapore in 2018.

Earlier this month, nuTonomy was selected by the Singapore Land Transport Authority (LTA) as an R&D partner, to support the development of a commercial AV service in Singapore. This trial represents the first, rapid result of this partnership. nuTonomy is the first, and to date only, private enterprise approved by the Singapore government to test AVs on public roads.

In May of this year, nuTonomy completed a $16M Series A funding led by Highland Capital Partners that included participation from Fontinalis Partners, Signal Ventures, Samsung Ventures, and EDBI, the dedicated corporate investment arm of the Singapore Economic Development Board.

 In addition to Singapore, nuTonomy is operating self-driving cars in Michigan and the United Kingdom, where it tests software in partnership with major automotive manufacturers such as Jaguar Land Rover.

For more information, visit

Axalta Launches Syrox, A New Refinish Brand

Axalta has launched Syrox, the latest brand in its refinish portfolio. Designed with new European formulations specifically for the mainstream aftermarket segment, Syrox is a complete and compact refinish paint system, including a waterborne basecoat, developed for passenger car repairs.

The Syrox refinish system provides a cost-effective alternative to premium product offerings. With a compact yet complete portfolio of paint products, Syrox is easy to use and to apply. New users will find the application technique of single coats with intermediate flash-off times reassuringly familiar. Coverage can be achieved in two coats plus one effect coat. What sets Syrox apart, in addition to its complete and compact system, is its exceptional colour matching, thanks to Axalta’s established and proven spectrophotometer technology and substantial global database of colour formulas. Together, these two tools give Syrox users an advantage in the body shop, helping to deliver, fast, easy and accurate colour-matching quality.

Syrox packaging is a first for the refinish industry. The design of the plastic basecoat bottles incorporates a special dosing lid that is designed to allow for extraordinarily accurate pouring, even down to a single drop of paint. The level indicator window on the side of the bottles lets users see when contents are getting low, and the flat-topped bottle caps that cover the dosing lids enable the bottles to stand and to be stored upside down so every drop of product can be used. The bottles come in convenient smaller volume sizes and only need a shake before use.

“The innovations that Syrox offers its users reflect what we’ve heard from our customers,” says Matthias Schönberg, Vice President of Axalta and President for Axalta’s Europe, Middle East and Africa region. “We identified a demand for a straight-forward, conventionally-applied refinish system that is economical to use and delivers accurate colour matches. The result is Syrox, which promises no compromises on colour or on quality. A complete all-rounder, Syrox is a refinish paint system that is suitable for body shops of any size that must comply with national or regional legislation on emissions of harmful volatile organic compounds, and those who are not reliant on OEM approvals.”

Syrox is the result of Axalta’s approach to research and development, a wholly new brand formulated to fulfil specific demands of customers. Syrox is manufactured in Europe, and will be launched in selected VOC-compliant markets in that region, as well as in Australia, New Zealand, China and other parts of Asia, throughout 2016.

Win A Dominator Kit

Valspar Automotive Australia is pleased to announce its “Why Do you Need Dominator?” competition! There is over $1000 worth of prizes to be won!

Prizes on offer

Win 1 of 5 Dominator Kits. The winner may choose between a black or tintable kit.

How to enter

Simply take a photo of an object that is in need of Dominator Urethane Liner and post the photo to the Valspar Automotive Australia Facebook wall with an explanation why. There are no limitations on how many times you can enter or what items you can submit, so get creative!

Entries will be judged on practicality and creativity.

Terms and conditions

To be eligible you must be an Australia resident over the age of 18. All entries must list why they need Dominator Urethane Liner. Multiple entries are allowed, however there is a maximum of one prize per person.

For full Terms and Conditions visit

Closing date

Competition closes on Monday 1st August 2016 at 23:59:59 AEST. Winners will be notified on 2nd August 2016.

Competition is conducted by Valspar Automotive Australia Pty Ltd. ABN 41080461230

Trademarks are the property of their respective owners.