News Watch

Kevin Butt, assistant general manager of body engineering for Toyota's North American headquarters, will kick off the Coating 2003 conference with a keynote presentation beginning at 8:30 a.m. on Tuesday, October 28.

Butt will address several current and future challenges for both Toyota and the automotive industry as a whole. These include environmental control on a global scale, quality assurance, emerging technologies such as precolored plastics, and consumers who take a greater interest in coatings that offer improved durability.

"Consumers are getting more sophisticated with the type of paints and coatings they are looking at today," Butt says. "They want something that looks great now, and they also want it to look great three to five years from now."

Butt will share with the audience how Toyota's manufacturing efficiency has led to improvements in the company's paint and finishing processes. He will also present Toyota's long-term perspective on strategic planning as a guide to weathering the inevitable swings in the economy.

Butt began working for Toyota in 1992 in the environmental department. He is currently responsible for body engineering for all of Toyota's North American manufacturing operations, including welding, stamping and painting.

The Coating 2003 conference and exhibition will be held October 28-30 in Indianapolis. For more information, visit