The automotive industry continues to be a hotbed of innovation, with activity driven by the need for enhanced driving experience, as well as the increasing importance of technologies such as the development of software to create an ideal in-car experience for drivers. In the last three years alone, there have been over 1.2 million patents filed and granted in the automotive industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Innovation in Automotive: Anti-corrosive coatings.

However, not all innovations are equal and nor do they follow a constant upward trend. Instead, their evolution takes the form of an S-shaped curve that reflects their typical lifecycle from early emergence to accelerating adoption, before finally stabilizing and reaching maturity.

Identifying where a particular innovation is on this journey, especially those that are in the emerging and accelerating stages, is essential for understanding their current level of adoption and the likely future trajectory and impact they will have.

290+ innovations will shape the automotive industry

According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which plots the S-curve for the automotive industry using innovation intensity models built on over 619,000 patents, there are 290+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.

Within the emerging innovation stage, eccentric crankshaft gears, retarder brake system, and closed-circuit liquid cooling are disruptive technologies that are in the early stages of application and should be tracked closely. Bio-fuel ICEs, electromagnetic valve actuators, and road friction estimation are some of the accelerating innovation areas, where adoption has been steadily increasing. Among maturing innovation areas are tyre bead fillers and vehicle turbochargers, which are now well established in the industry.

Innovation S-curve for the automotive industry

Anti-corrosive coatings is a key innovation area in automotive

Anti-corrosion coatings are used in several industries to safeguard metal parts from deterioration caused by moisture, salt spray, oxidation, or exposure to a variety of industrial or environmental chemicals.

GlobalData’s analysis also uncovers the companies at the forefront of each innovation area and assesses the potential reach and impact of their patenting activity across different applications and geographies. According to GlobalData, there are 20+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established automotive companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of anti-corrosive coatings.

Key players in anti-corrosive coatings – a disruptive innovation in the automotive industry

‘Application diversity’ measures the number of different applications identified for each relevant patent and broadly splits companies into either ‘niche’ or ‘diversified’ innovators.

‘Geographic reach’ refers to the number of different countries each relevant patent is registered in and reflects the breadth of geographic application intended, ranging from ‘global’ to ‘local’.

Patent volumes related to anti-corrosive coatings

Company Total patents (2010 - 2021) Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies
PPG Industries 68 Unlock company profile
Nippon Steel 33 Unlock company profile
Hempel 30 Unlock company profile
POSCO Holdings 25 Unlock company profile
Nissan Chemical 23 Unlock company profile
Sumitomo Electric Industries 22 Unlock company profile
Kobe Steel 19 Unlock company profile
Sherwin-Williams 18 Unlock company profile
Konica Minolta 15 Unlock company profile
Mazda Motor 14 Unlock company profile
Pidilite Industries 13 Unlock company profile
RAG-Stiftung 13 Unlock company profile
Canon 12 Unlock company profile
Kansai Paint 11 Unlock company profile
Meggitt 10 Unlock company profile
Chugoku Marine Paints 10 Unlock company profile
Hyundai Motor Group 9 Unlock company profile
LG 9 Unlock company profile
Nihon Parkerizing 9 Unlock company profile
Toyota Motor 8 Unlock company profile
Kia 7 Unlock company profile
Nippon Suisan Kaisha 7 Unlock company profile
Topy Industries 7 Unlock company profile
BASF 5 Unlock company profile
Council of Scientific and Industrial Research 5 Unlock company profile

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

PPG Industries is one of the leading patent filers in anti-corrosive coatings. It has recently developed a new product called PPG INHIBISIL Silica Anti-Corrosion Pigments, which are calcium oxide-modified silica products, that are designed to replace traditional chrome-based and other toxic anti-corrosion pigments. The anti-corrosion pigments are non-toxic, chemically inert, and compatible with other anti-corrosion additives. Some other key patent filers in the innovation area include Nippon Steel, Hempel, POSCO Holdings, and Nissan chemical.

To further understand the key themes and technologies disrupting the automotive industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Automotive.


GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData’s Patent Analytics tracks patent filings and grants from official offices around the world. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.