The acronym ABS derives from the initials of the three monomers, Acrylonitrile, Butadiene and Styrene, used in the preparation of a wide spectrum of plastics that combine the properties of resins and elastomers offering toughness, high impact strength and excellent surface hardness.

The first ABS plastics were introduced in the mid 1950s in competition with traditional materials for car industry components, electronic industry and for furniture manufacture.