Currently, about 160 pounds of plastic are used in the average American Automobile. Exterior part applications account for approximately 20 pounds of the total. These applications are in use because the advantages of plastic more than offset the risks of utilizing a new material. The outlook for increasing use of plastics on the exterior has never been more favorable due to a combination of factors within the automotive and plastics industries. This paper examines these factors and concludes that plastics usage for high-volume exterior body applications will expand significantly in the next several years. These advancements will require substantial development effort by both industries.