White has ranked as the most popular vehicle color in the world, according to data from PPG Industries. Approximately 21 percent of 2011 model-year cars around the world have been white. Silver and black were tied for second most popular at 20 percent.
In North America, white was first (20 percent), silver was second (19 percent), black was third (18 percent) and gray was fourth (15 percent). Red and blue were tied for fifth (9 percent), naturals such as browns, tans, golds, oranges and yellows were sixth (7 percent), green was seventh (2 percent) and other/niche colors were last (1 percent).
In Europe, black is the most popular color (26 percent), followed by white (19 percent), silver (16 percent), gray (15 percent), blue (9 percent), red (7 percent), naturals (5 percent), green (2 percent) and other/niche colors (1 percent).
In the Asia/Pacific region, silver (25 percent) is the most popular color, followed by white (23 percent), black (17 percent), gray (8 percent), red (10 percent), blue (7 percent), naturals (7 percent), green (2 percent) and other/niche colors (1 percent).
“Color is one of the most basic means of human expression,” said Jane E. Harrington, PPG manager, color styling, automotive coatings. “The palette of colors being developed for the automotive segment is being influenced by culture, nature, fashion, interior design, media, auto shows, color popularity and new pigment technology.”
PPG says it recently presented automotive designers with 70 new exterior shades for consideration in their designs of the 2014-2015 model years. These included colors such as Goldeluxe, a silver with an influence of a gold; White Nougat, a soft creamy white with a highlight sparkle; Muddy Waters, a tone of brown with a pearl luster effect; Grape Spritz, a blue fused with a purple highlight; and Pot O’Gold, a light green with a hint of gold.
PPG also recently completed an online study of consumer opinions regarding the importance of coatings and color as they relate to new car purchases. Some key findings of the survey are:
48 percent of the automotive consumers who responded said they generally choose products based on color.
77 percent of the automotive consumers said exterior color was a factor in their automotive purchase decision.
Vehicle color is an important factor in the choice of vehicle, according to 30 percent of the automotive consumers.
The same percentage about 31 percent of the automotive consumers said they are willing to pay extra for a vehicle that expresses their personality through color.
Owners of large luxury cars, sporty cars and large premium SUVs said they are willing to pay the most extra get the color of their choice.
40 percent of the automotive consumers said they would prefer a wider range of color choices.
“Our consumer research has clearly shown that color is critically important to car buyers,” Harrington said. “It’s why we do what we do. But more importantly, it’s why PPG puts so much effort into researching, evaluating and understanding trends as they relate to color.”