Home » News » Lexus » Lexus LC500 gets Structural Blue body paint
How can you make a special car very special? In most cases you use a paint that is unique and it was never used before. Same with the Lexus LC 500 which is now available with the Structural Blue hue. 

The 15 year quest to develop Structural Blue saw a collaboration between the company’s Tec Centres in both Ann Arbor, MI, USA and in Japan, together with VIAVI Solutions Inc, a leading provider of thin film optical coatings and pigments based in CA, USA.

In their intensive search to create the new colour, the team drew inspiration from the Morpho butterfly. Native to North and South America, this insect is renowned for the deep, shimmering blue of its wings. But, in fact, the wings are colourless. The blue seen by the human eye is created by light interference on the microscopic lattice surface structure of the Morpho butterfly’s wings.

Replicating this effect led the team to combine an entirely new kind of multi-layered pigment with experiments with the basic principles of the way light interacts with our eyes.

The paint can be created with just a seven-layer structure. This made it practical for use in the production of cars, albeit highly exclusive ones like the Structural Blue LC500 and 500h.

The pigment is used to produce a new paint in a production process taking eight months, including 12 production steps and 20 quality inspections. The paint is applied to the LC’s bodywork in a 15-micrometre layer between the primer and clear coats. Nano-structures – super-small flakes – in the paint generate iridescence, giving the impression of the colour constantly changing with the light. Conventional pigment paints reflect less than 50 per cent of incoming light as a visible blue colour, but with Structural Blue the level is nearly 100 per cent. In total, 300g of pigment with 300 billion pigment flakes is used for every one of the special LCs.

Such is the fine quality of the process, only two Structural Blue cars can be produced in a working day at Lexus’ Motomachi factory in Japan, the high-technology home of the LC.

Given the effect, like that of the butterfly wings which inspired it, is designed to work on the eye rather than on a camera lens, it is only when the Structural Blue paint is seen ‘in the flesh’ that the effect becomes clear.


Related Articles

Leave a Comment

Fields marked with * are required
Name *:
Email *:
Comment *:
Code *:
  CAPTCHA
  • Email
  • YouTube
  • RSS
  • Twitter
  • facebook
  • feedburner

Related Specs

  1. 2003 Lexus HPX Concept

    Engine: V8, Power: 223.7 kw / 300.0 bhp @ 5600 rpm, Torque: 440.64 nm / 325 ft lbs @ 3400 rpm
  2. 2003 Lexus IS 430 Concept

    Engine: 3UZ -FE Aluminum V8, Power: 253.5 kw / 340 bhp, Torque: 406.75 nm / 300 ft lbs
  3. 2008 Lexus IS-F

    Engine: 2UR-GSE V8, Power: 309.5 kw / 415 bhp @ 6600 rpm, Torque: 503.01 nm / 371 ft lbs @ 5200 rpm
  4. 1994 Lexus Landau Concept

    Engine: Lexus GS300 V8, Power: 193.9 kw / 260.0 bhpN/A
  5. 2005 Lexus LF-A Concept

    N/AN/AN/A

New Vehicles

Hyundai i30 N Line starts at £21,255 in UKHyundai i30 N Line starts at £21,255 in UK
After a long wait, Hyundai is finally making the most of its new N Performance division. The South-Korean manufacturer has officially announced the pricing ...

Concept Cars

INFINITI Q Inspiration Concept first image revealedINFINITI Q Inspiration Concept first image revealed
As NAIAS Detroit is closing in, INFINITI is getting ready to offer us a glimpse of its future. Nissan's premium division has released an image of its ...

Custom Cars

Rolls Royce Privacy Suite introduced in ChinaRolls Royce Privacy Suite introduced in China
Rolls Royce builds the most luxurious cars on the plant. We all know that. In order to provide also the isolation feel some of its clients needs, Rolls ...

Future Cars

Mercedes-Benz Vans launches the Vision URBANETIC conceptMercedes-Benz Vans launches the Vision URBANETIC concept
Mercedes is more and more into autonomous cars and is developing new technologies, fot the moment only at a concept stage. So is the Vision URBANETIC, ...

Market News

2017 Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles sales2017 Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles sales
Even if they are not as popular as Ford and Renault utility vehicles, Volkswagen's are also a major part of the European market. In the first seven months ...

Gadgets

BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant available starting 2019BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant available starting 2019
BMW is ready to follow Mercedes in personal assistance technology. After the Stuttgart-based manufacturer launched the Hey Mercedes assistant, now BMW ...

Various News

Jaguar XE SV Project 8 sets lap record on Laguna SecadJaguar XE SV Project 8 sets lap record on Laguna Secad
Jaguar is hunting records and this time not on the Nurburgring. The UK manufacturer is targeting great performances outside Europe, on US soil. Jaguar’s ...

Motorsports

BMW M235i Racing Cup gains Evo Pack and becomes M240i Racing CupBMW M235i Racing Cup gains Evo Pack and becomes M240i Racing Cup
A few years ago BMW has launch a special program for the VLN Endurance Championship at the Nürburgring. The German car manufacturer designed the a special ...

Videos

Matthew McConaughey stars in new Lincoln Navigator commercialMatthew McConaughey stars in new Lincoln Navigator commercial
There are many brands who look to attract more customers and to raise awareness with the help of some TV stars, sport figures or actors. Lincoln is now ...