Trade journalists recently got the opportunity to suit up and spray Spies Hecker Hi-TEC and Cromax EZ automotive refinish products during a visit to Axalta’s Customer Experience Center in Concord, N.C.
The spray sessions highlighted Axalta’s approach to meeting the needs of two key segments of the collision repair industry: MSOs and single-location independent body shops.
Although MSO market share has doubled since 2006, according to data from the 2015 Profile of the Evolving Collision Repair Marketplace by The Romans Group, non-MSOs still represent 70 percent of the collision repair market.
Cromax EZ, introduced last year, is designed to appeal to single-location independent shops that are comfortable with traditional refinish technology. The waterborne basecoat is easy to mix, match and apply, according to Axalta, and uses the same wet-on-dry coat-flash application process that independent shops have perfected over the years.
Spies Hecker Hi-TEC has been designed to meet the needs of MSOs and consolidators, whose DRP-driven shops are more focused on maximizing productivity and throughput and other key performance indicators established by their insurance partners. Using a one-and-a-half-coat wet-on-wet application process, Spies Hecker Hi-TEC clocks in at seven minutes of application time, making it the most productive basecoat in the industry, according to Axalta.
Philadelphia-based Axalta Coating Systems, which spun off from DuPont in 2013, has been investing heavily in R&D and customer support. Axalta’s Customer Experience Center, which opened in May 2017, is one of seven new or expanded customer learning and development centers. In the heart of NASCAR country, the facility is on the 140-acre Hendrick Motorsports campus in Concord, N.C.