Ensuring Color Match for Vehicle Wraps

Color is a vital part of brand identity, and many brands rely on unique colors to achieve desired brand recognition and association. For print service providers (PSPs) and graphics installers, ensuring a brand’s wide-format graphics have precise color matching and consistency across all media and applications is important in supporting customers’ brand management expectations.

Color matching is especially essential for vehicle wraps. The intended audience for these graphic investments is keen to know when a brand color is off, which can create a distraction from the key messaging being shared.

Among the most color-critical vehicle wraps are those that include brand sponsorships and personal designs that are intended to grab the attention of the viewer. Customers who are investing in these platforms have high expectations for their graphics to generate interest and drive new business.

Color matching across color change films or printing platforms isn’t always easy. There are several factors that can prevent print providers from getting the desired color match. One of the most notable is incorrect profiling for the transfer of the approved artwork to the media being printed. Other factors include equipment issues (avoid this by ensuring proper equipment maintenance), environmental conditions (such as relative humidity within the print facility), and appropriate static control.

Mimaki Arcade Wrap

The wrapping of this arcade game was done in 10 easy steps. This wrap was printed on Mimaki's latest eco-solvent printer, the JV100-160, and laminated with Mimaki's LA-160W heat-assisted laminator. The panels were cut with Mimaki's CG-FX Plus cutter plotter. The digital media used for this application was Mactac REBEL RB528H High Tack and the laminate was PERMACOLOR ColorGard LUV 8200.

For color shift and specific brand color matches, companies like Mactac can provide custom color match drawdowns (swatches) for approval. Specialty colors for cast vinyl films are created in the lab and measured utilizing color spectrophotometers to dial in the correct combination of compounds that can be replicated in large-scale production. With these formulas in hand, they can also be repeated with great accuracy.

When needed, PSPs should also utilize high-quality overlaminates to add a custom finish while protecting images from sun fade and cleaning. Laminates like Mactac’s PERMACOLOR® RAYZor™ can meet these needs while minimizing color shift.

Explore more about Mactac’s color matching capabilities by checking out our ICC profiles.