By on December 14, 2020

White Remains Top Vehicle Color Globally According to Axalta

 

Axalta released its 68th Global Automotive Color Popularity Report today, and it said 81 percent of vehicles are white, black, gray or silver. White at 38 percent is the most frequently purchased automotive color worldwide and has been for 10 years consecutively. Black remains at 19 percent year-over-year and is a luxury vehicle favorite. Gray, at 15 percent, is up two percent and is at a 10-year high. Meanwhile, silver is in decline in all regions, now at just nine percent. This shift from silver to gray in many markets is its perception as a more modern and luxurious color.

 

White Remains Top Vehicle Color Globally

Axalta is a leading supplier of liquid and powder coatings, and its annual Global Automotive Color Popularity Report captures data from every country where automobiles are produced. Their report enables automakers to observe trends across the globe and in particular markets.

“Consumer purchasing trends reflected in the report drives development of colors for the future,” said Nancy Lockhart, Axalta global product manager of color. “We’re pleased to share this data and bring together our color technology, market experience, and trend data to bring colors to life.”

White Remains Top Vehicle Color Globally

Innovative color choices for automotive buyers follow the latest home, fashion, and product trends, including an interest in green-blue and green-yellow shades. Also noteworthy is the increasing global use of gray, and nuances such as fine flake effects and hints of color flakes. While we’ve yet to see a vehicle in teal metallic, it could happen if the color continues to trend upwards.

White Remains Top Vehicle Color Globally

Results of the Global Automotive Color Popularity report are based on analysis of 2020 automotive build data and are indicators of current market trends. Reporting on the industry’s color trends started in 1953, and Axalta also makes color forecasts as reported in their global annual color trend forecast. Automotive colors that are aesthetically pleasing and functionally beneficial evolve as vehicle and consumer preferences change.

[Images: Axalta, © 2020 J. Sakurai/TTAC]

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47 Comments on “White Remains Top Vehicle Color Globally According to Axalta...”


  • avatar
    Rnaboz

    Gray is also the perfect color to blend into the road and get hit because you failed to turn your lights on in the drizzle! Darwinism at it’s finest.

  • avatar
    JMII

    I’ve owned white and black cars in the past, but those colors are now on the “never again” list. Black is impossible to keep clean (plus too hot) and white, even when perfect, never stands out and just looks cheap to me. While I think silver or grey is boring I’ve seen some tints that look decent, like gunmetal or bronze.

    I’ve owned, in order: beige, red, black, red, yellow, green, teal, black, blue, silver, white, orange, red, blue.

    • 0 avatar
      Sigivald

      My truck is white, because it was used, and it turns out pretty much every used SuperDuty is white.

      I’ve never chosen Plain And Boring in any other context, though.

      Cars I’ve owned: Red, Green, Tan-and-Brown two-tone, Blue, White [trucl], and Brown metallic.

      (I have driven my parents’ grey Camry as a loaner, and it’s SO GENERIC I can never find it in the parking lot.)

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      I’m not a fan of white for several reasons. Living in the Great White North means your vehicle is camo coloured for 1/2 the year. It is also the preferred colour of fleets.

  • avatar
    brn

    Black / White and between account for over 80 percent?

  • avatar
    NoID

    I’m a proud seven-percenter, since the two new vehicles in my driveway are Reactor Blue and Indigo Blue. Looks like I need to think wilder if I want to be a true nonconformist.

  • avatar
    redgolf

    My first white auto, a 2020 Chevy Equinox, I did paint all the Chevy bow ties black including the center caps so as not to look so “plain” I’ve yet to see any around me with black bows! I’ve owned about 20 non whites, black, blue ( light & dark ), silver, red, green, brown ( light & dark ), orange ( hugger orange 69 Camaro ) cream, no yellow!

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    Colors I’ve had, in order (I think): orange, white, blue, blue, black, white, purple, white, blue, blue, white, green, red, silver, white, white, blue.

    Current cars are red and blue, but I’ve had 6 white cars.

    Never had yellow, gray, or tan/brown, but I’d consider the latter.

    I won’t do silver or black again, although Tesla silver is the nicest I’ve seen.

    As for color customization – always consider resale. Your choice of some wacky color may not appeal to anybody else. That’s what wraps are for.

    • 0 avatar
      SCE to AUX

      Huh, I forgot about the white car my son drives at college. That makes 7 white cars….

    • 0 avatar
      redgolf

      ” always consider resale. Your choice of some wacky color may not appeal to anybody else. ”
      Unless it’s a pink 59 caddy!

    • 0 avatar
      Scoutdude

      Back when I would fix and sell cars I’d buy them for the next guy but now I don’t give a ship whether the color could limit the resale value. I’d rather loose a $1000 in resale value than drive a grey car. If I keep the car for ~3 years that would be less than a $1 per day to not have to look at a grey or silver car every time I get in it.

      • 0 avatar
        Sigivald

        I drive cars until they fall apart, more or less, so I never care about resale.

        Basically by the time I’m replacing it it’s worthless no matter *what* color it is, and trade-in is basically “yeah, we can sell this at BHBP values” charity from the dealer.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      I’ve had the following colours: blue, red × 2, teal/silver, dark grey/silver, and light biege/black.
      I love the orange colour of the Colorado, I also like their desert tan. I also like Ford’s silver spruce.

  • avatar
    lstanley

    “This shift from silver to gray in many markets is its perception as a more modern and luxurious color.”

    -looks at my gray 2013 Honda Odyssey, nods in recognition and approval.

  • avatar
    Add Lightness

    My wife figures white is a colour but I can’t see it. Black is an anti-colour.
    When I drop serious cash, I don’t go gray-scale.

  • avatar
    golden2husky

    Had a “brownish MK VII, red, and dark/burgundy red for cars where I had a choice. White as #1? Jesus, what a dull and boring world. I hated having a white car, but free means no bitching. Some pull it off – a C7 Corvette looks good in white, but white always means the body seams pop out. I can’t help but wonder if those top three colors are so popular because that is what is mostly in stock. Does the tail wag the dog?

    • 0 avatar
      whynotaztec

      I really wonder about the tail wagging the dog. Who orders cars now? I bet most sell right off the lot, and many times the buyer will settle for grayscale but probably never for a red or yellow, etc. In fact that is how I got my black Accord – great lease rate at the time, virtually no color choices however.

      • 0 avatar
        Flipper35

        This. When the dealer lot only has non-color choices, that is what people buy.

        Our current stable is Blue Streak Pearl, Velvet Red, Intruder Purple, Driftwood Metallic (kind of a pewter/titanium color), and bland silver. The silver was given to us. The motorcycle is white and grey and red and the kids motorcycle is blue. The Blue and Driftwood have dark interiors.

        I did have a white car. Second car I owned and it was the only one in the lot with the options I wanted so it was white or nothing. All my other cars were a real color of some sort, not grey scale.

  • avatar
    gasser

    As monotonous as black, white, gray colors are to the exteriors, black interiors are boring. I looked back at the 70s and 80s and see red dashboards green dashboards, light tan dashboards and some thing just pops for me. Almost every new car today has a black dashboard and black door trim (sometimes saved from total monotony by a tan or gray cardboard door card). Please bring back a little variety both inside and outside the new vehicles.

    • 0 avatar
      JMII

      My current car (C7) has a rich and luxurious brown interior… so yes more color inside and out is nice. My brother’s first car was a blue Civic that had a blue interior. I owned a Mustang with a red interior but that was a bit too much. Also had several tan interiors that, while harder to keep clean, feel way more open vs the all black cave you find in 90% of vehicles.

    • 0 avatar
      iNeon

      My Compass has an orange exterior over a tan and black interior. There’s a nice little interplay between which panels and pockets are accent v. neutral, colors-wise. Of course, they’ve discontinued that interior color story(lol) and the manual/4×4, so now I’ve got a unicorn that’ll never be properly serviceable.

      Suppose I get to be a bully with the “people like you don’t buy these cars new– just get a grey jetta like me and shut up”

      Most any Mopar is available in fun colors both interior and exterior– but the company charges for the privilege, limits availability– and uses the availability of actual colors to promote an artificial scarcity situation.

      SPITFIRE ORANGE OVER SANDSTORM INTERIOR WITH MANUAL SHIFT AND 4X4 ARE RARE AF BOIIIIII type stuff.

      But also– I kinda dare any of y’all to find another one.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    White is a much cheaper color for the manufacturers since it does not have the pigmentation that the other colors have. I have had one black vehicle but I will probably never have another one since it is hard to keep clean and it absorbs heat especially black interiors. I had a pure silver truck and really liked that color in that it was easy to take care of and always looked good. I have had champagne and pewter as well and liked that they were easy to take care of and were timeless. I currently have white, pearl white, and champagne vehicles which I don’t mind but I am not enthusiastic about white (more of a compromise and what was readily available). Of the current colors available I would probably choose silver and then white especially since those colors are not as dated and are more available. And yes I have had other colors such as pale yellow, toreador red, and light metallic blue all colors that I liked but that are harder to get on most new cars but the red on the new Mazdas is very close to the toreador red and would be the red I would choose if I wanted a red vehicle (really a sharp good looking red).

  • avatar
    whynotaztec

    Glad to know that for once I am right. I usually walk at lunch through a very busy area, and I sometimes informally count the grayscale cars. It’s really about searching for a bright color. I usually come up with at least 80% grayscale if not more.

  • avatar

    So I had:
    2 white
    2 beige
    1 light green
    1 blue
    1 gray

  • avatar
    ajla

    I generally prefer a Skittles color on the exterior, but on some vehicles I think a black, gray, or pearl white paint with a red interior works well.

  • avatar
    Dan

    Sounds about right. Half the blues are dull enough to pass for grey and green now means full on black in anything other than direct sunlight.

    Player characters wear colors.

  • avatar
    redgolf

    A white 75/76 Lincoln Mark 1V with white/red “lipstick” interior, I had the chance to buy one 25 years ago and passed, dang it!

  • avatar

    Good to hear 100% of my cars are the most popular color, which must make them nearly priceless.

  • avatar
    KOKing

    If this counts commercial vehicles, the predominance of white makes sense.
    I’ve had one each black and white cars, and I’ll never get a black one again, nor will I get silver. Have 2 blues and a red now, one of the former replacing a green one.

    But I think as long as people buy cars off the lot, or pick colors based on resale value, these trends likely won’t change.

    • 0 avatar
      Scoutdude

      I’m sure it includes at least the fleet pickups and vans which make up a significant number of the vehicles sold per year.

      That is the reason my fleet is so white, because I buy my work trucks at the gov’t surplus auctions.

  • avatar
    Scoutdude

    Well I have to say I’m guilty, lots of whites in my family fleet, though that is because the majority of those white vehicles are ex-fleet.

    Now my daily driver (or what I drove daily pre-pandemic) is white, pearl white and that was sort of a choice. I would have choose black but this one was the best combination of equipment/condition/price of any non grey or silver which I didn’t even begin to consider.

    The next most popular color in the fleet is Blue and in fact the last two cars I bought were blue and it was because they were blue that I bought them. I didn’t really need another Marauder but when one of the 328 in Dark Blue Pearl came up on the local Craiglist I couldn’t pass it up. The other the wife’s car. I specifically searched for Blue Candy and didn’t even look at any that weren’t that color because she had seen that color and didn’t like the silver car that she had.

    Bringing up the rear is Black.

  • avatar
    teddyc73

    I find it amusing how everyone is listing all the vehicle colors they’ve had. Color choices these days, with some exceptions, is a vast wasteland of dull boring mundane hues. Then you have companies like FCA which have been using the same core group of colors for so many years it’s becoming a joke. While they are getting better and have introduced some new exciting colors of late enough already with maximum steel and granite crystal and velvet red. Interiors are even worse, although there seems to be a change, especially with luxury cars. I like knowing I’m in the 3% range. The western brown on my Ram 1500 is absolutely beautiful. Such a rich deep color which is stunning when clean in full sun. I was elated when I found it. I thought the color was only used on Jeep Grand Cherokees and Chrysler 200s, as auburn pearl. More browns and greens please automakers! Live a little.

  • avatar
    MRF 95 T-Bird

    Bring back some of the classic colors that still hold up well today. Mercedes Benz Tobacco brown. GM Honduran maroon.

  • avatar
    Sigfried

    One reason my wife got a new Pilot this fall instead of a new Sedona minivan was the availability of a pretty color. Even in their greyscale options, Kia Sedona only offers several choices of almost black. Our new Pilot is a medium steel blue. It’s a bit on the grey side of blue, but more of a real color than 85% of the cars on the road.

    The other reason was that by the time I got the options I wanted, an EX Sedona cost almost the same as a Pilot EX. If I could have gotten automatic climate control without paying an extra $4,000 for the Sedona EX Premium Package I’d have purchased a Sedona. But when they ended up being about the same price, the Pilot All Wheel Drive, safety features, Honda reliability, and Honda resale value won out. I also like the service department at my local Honda dealer much better than the service department at my local Kia dealer.

  • avatar
    nrd515

    I’ve had two black vehicles, a 2000 Sierra and a 2008 Charger R/T. Never again. Both looked like they had been lightly sprayed with a sort of dull clear mixed with a little green(Pollen) six months out of the year. I really hate boring colors like white, brown, grey. Of the current FCA colors, Smoke Show and F8 Green are just awful, but both are better than the horrible Destroyer Gray from last year and 2018. I’m driving a TorRed Challenger, it was my second color choice after Yellow Jacket, with Plum Crazy behind TorRed. I like my colors punchy and not subdued outside, and black as possible inside the vehicle. I hated the colored interiors of my first 2 cars a lot. If FCA or whatever it’s called would bring back Petty Blue, well, they would probably sell me another Challenger. It would be my third one. Petty Blue and a true Candy Apple are my 2 favorite car colors. I see a low end Challenger custom painted in Candy Apple every so often, and it looks fantastic.

  • avatar
    ponchoman49

    Proof that depression is running high and strong and it looks like it will continue this way for the foreseeable future. The all black fad furthers this sad state of affairs. Give me some color and bling ot jest things up man!

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    Yellow/gold ahead of green 2:1?

    What’s wrong with people?

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