BMW April 2022

In 2019, R-M – BASF’s premium paint brand – is celebrating its 100 years in business and presenting its success story through a range of activities. The centenary year kicked off at the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit.

Pioneering spirit and innovative strength

Throughout the years since the two friends Fred Rinshed and Herbert Mason established the R-M firm in 1919 in Detroit – at the very heart of the automotive industry – this premium brand has been shaping the automotive refinish industry, thanks to major innovations and its own pioneering spirit. R-M is now a BASF brand, yet part of its philosophy has always been to make the economic success of its customers the focus of its efforts. By using products and services that are continuously improved and made even more user-friendly, vehicle painters throughout the world are making the best choice to ensure their long-term productivity.

As we celebrate our centenary, R-M invites its customers to look back at the milestones of the company’s history. The motto is: “Being successful means remaining innovative”. This is because, thanks to its innovations, the brand has always made a significant contribution to the development of the automotive sector.

Historically: digital colour expertise at R-M

R-M revolutionised the market in 1948 when it introduced the base colour system. The Tintometer became a groundbreaking tool in this context. It allowed painters to mix the desired colour shade themselves in their own workshop in minutes. All manufacturers of automotive refinishes still abide by this principle to this day. Digitisation has been playing an important role for many years now. As a result, benefiting the customers is crucial. So, in 1996, R-M was the first brand in the industry to launch its own website, enabling customers to access mixing formulas for colour shades – 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Many technical enhancements are now possible on the basis of this colour database that has been managed for decades by R-M. Hence the Colortronic 12/6 colour measuring device was introduced, which simplifies the process of precise colour matching.

A foundation was laid in terms of customer focus when R-M Services was launched in 2000. As well as product quality, what also matters to R-M is providing the best possible advice to paint workshops. Modules such as TopScan or the ShopMaster software can help businesses analyse their profitability and put them on the path to long-term success.

Events in our centenary year “Being successful means remaining innovative”

Our centenary year kicks off in Detroit, the birthplace of R-M, with a video about the brand’s history that will be shown on the BASF stand at the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS). In Clermont-de-l’Oise (France), where R-M built its first European plant 50 years ago, there is an exhibition showing how R-M’s products and colour expertise have developed. Historical exhibits relating to the brand’s history are on show in the presentation room at the international R-M Refinish Competence Centre. In addition, digital development in paint training and the promotion of young talent with the R-M Best Painter Contest will be examined there.

Worldwide, the R-M brand would like to share its experiences with its customers – and its success stories too. Since the 70s, R-M has also been established in Asia, where its innovative strength has been demonstrated through the success of the ONYX HD paint series in Japan.

R-M is celebrating 2019 on its website and on social media. All the news and stories from our customers are shared throughout the year at and on the new Instagram RmpaintOfficial page under the hashtag #rmpaint100yo.