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Paint codes: Spies Hecker looks to the internet for an ID solution

The bodyshop struggle to identify and match paint codes could soon be consigned to the past, thanks to an advanced IT solution being developed by Spies Hecker.

The refinish specialist says that when its next generation Colour Retrieval system is launched it will combine spectophotometry, vehicle manufacturers' data and broadband internet communications, linking a refinisher to a central colour database.

It's unclear exactly how far off its introduction is, but a Spies Hecker spokesman says its technology team has been working on the project for some time.

“The team has studied the entire refinish business from all sides - the repairer, the insurer, the supplier and the customer - to identify every need,” he says. “Number one priority is correct and early identification of codes at the estimate stage.”

Spies Hecker's vision is a global database, accessed via the internet and using colour pigmentation and OEM variant data retrieved from VMs' bar codes.

Expansion of imbedded services in the Colour Retrieval system can be expected, carrying a full business management module to work out profit contributions and benchmark information.

And it could be super-smart. “Linked to online video estimating, the car image would generate the volume of paint required, determine the material price and make sure the product was available,” says Spies Hecker.

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