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Posts Tagged ‘auto colors’

The “Face” and the “Flop” – Picking the Right Paint Colors for Tomorrow’s Cars Can Be a Big Challenge

Two-tone pastels, “secure” blacks and blues, high-tech golds among the likely trends of 2019.

by on Jan.20, 2016

Buick opted for a paint so dark you might think it was black, not blue, depending on lighting.

Low-slung and sensually sculpted, the Buick Avista is generating rave reviews, and large crowds, at the 2016 North American International Auto Show.

When designers pulled the concept car together, they spent nearly as much time coming up with the right, dark blue paint color as they did on Avista’s sheet metal. And the Buick team wasn’t alone. Whether ticket-me-red, sunburst orange or elegant white, color is critical to designers hoping to make their production cars and concepts pop on the auto show floor – and in the showroom.

We Color Outside the Lines!

“When you buy a car, your friends are likely to ask, ‘What did you buy – and what color is it?’” suggests Jane Harrington, the manager of color styling for PPG Automotive Coatings.


Politics, the Environment – and Your iPhone – Could Influence the Color of Your Next Car

Blues, greens, browns gain momentum – but white, black, silver and gray still dominate.

by on Aug.05, 2013

BASF color chief Paul Czornij with samples of paint colors likely to be popular over the next few years.

Henry Ford liked to tell his customers they could order a Model T in any color they wanted “as long as it’s black” – an option that certainly wouldn’t fly today.

Automakers today offer a wide ranging palette of colors, seemingly every shade between black and white, and the range of offerings continues to grow. BASF, one of the industry’s largest paint suppliers, is showing off 65 new hues to automotive designers as part of its annual color trend show.

Color My World!

While a handful of shades continue to dominate — black, white, silver and gray – other popular shades are strongly influenced by factors ranging from current events to consumer electronics, as well as increasing concerns about the environment, explains Paul Czornij, the technical manager of BASF’s Color Excellence Group.


BMW Designer Credits Apple for Selling White Cars

But brown is back, too.

by on Aug.30, 2012

Does the iPad help sell white cars?

White is the new black…so to speak.  When it comes to the colors that American motorists tend to prefer, white has traditionally taken a back seat to black and silver.  But it has been gaining ground lately, taking over as the most popular automotive hue in some recent studies.

Credit Apple, says Sandy McGill, chief designer for BMW DesignWorks, who believes the Silicon Valley giant’s iPhones and iPads have had a direct influence on the choice consumers make when buying cars, as well.

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McGill offers kudos to the late Apple founder and CEO Steve Jobs for transforming the public mindset.  “Prior to Apple, white was associated with things like refrigerators or the tiles in your bathroom. Apple made white valuable,” the designer told


Silver Still King, But Automakers Look to “Naturally Cultivated” Colors

Will your next car be delivered in a “nuanced berry” tone?

by on Jul.26, 2012

Vibrant versions of traditional colors, such as green, copper and berry, could be in for a comeback.

When it comes to paint colors, motorists are a predictable lot, those staple, if boring, shades of silver, black and white routinely accounting for as much as 80% of the current automotive market.  But a new forecast by one of the industry’s leading paint suppliers suggests many buyers might be ready to shift to something a little more exotic.

In its annual forecast of color trends, BASF Automotive Coatings says it anticipates a surge of “naturally cultivated” tones, including “nuanced” berry and copper hues, as well as a return of brown, blue and green – though the latter will be more subtle and organic versions of the traditional earth shades.

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“Although popular staple colors such as silver, black and white make up approximately 50 to 80 percent of current production, there is a rich diversity of potential shades that is returning to the market,” said Paul Czornij, Technical Manager for the BASF Color Excellence group. “The increasing inclination of society to celebrate beauty in earth tones and more traditional green and blue hues is the basis for this trend.”


White Now the #1 Color With Car Buyers

Silver takes a back seat, while Purple Spritz is on hold.

by on Oct.06, 2011

White is hip enough that Kia used it for this White Tiger Soul Concept car.

Henry Ford liked to tell his customers they could order a Model T in any color they wanted “as long as it’s black.” That certainly wouldn’t fly today, the automotive world awash in bright hues that cover the spectrum for pearlescent purple to flaming red.

But while a maker like Bentley might offer as many as 20 different shades – and even permit buyers to opt for additional custom colors – the reality is that the vast majority of buyers opt for only a handful of hues.  And white was the top pick for American motorists during the 2011 model-year.

At 21%, white not only rolled into the top spot but displaced the perennial favorite, silver, which slipped just a micron behind black, which proved a favorite with one in five U.S. motorists, according to top-tier paint supplier PPG.

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With white, black and silver all coming in at over 20%, the rest of the spectrum had to pick up the scraps.  Gray – which also includes similar hues like pewter – was the choice of 13% of buyers.  The other shades fell below 10%, starting with red, at 9%, blue at 8%, “natural” shades, like beige, at 6%, and all others garnered a minimal 2% combined.


Silver Stays Most Popular Paint Color

But black coming on strong, reports DuPont.

by on Dec.08, 2010

Henry Ford once told customers they could order a car in any color they wanted, “as long as it’s black.”  When arch-rival General Motors came along and offered up a palette of paint colors, the upstart maker took a sales lead it still holds today.

These days, makers know that buyers want an array of alternatives, whether they be somber black or vibrant gold.  Yet, the vast majority of motorists still tend to stick to just a couple of shades, notably silver, which has dominated the automotive spectrum for several decades – and this year has accounted for 26% of the new cars, trucks and crossovers sold in the U.S., according to mega paint supplier DuPont Automotive.

Silver, which was a solid number one for most of the last decade is in danger of being dethroned, however, and Henry Ford would undoubtedly be pleased to see black making a comeback.  In its various permutations, noire grabbed a 24% market share in 2010.  One reason is that there’s now more than the usual glossy black to choose from.  In fact, the traditional, solid version of the hue accounted for only 10% of the market, the other 14% went to what DuPont describes as “effect” versions of black.

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Third on the list is gray, which some paint suppliers actually lump together with silver – which have given the traditional choice for high-line vehicles dominance once again.

White, which briefly nudged silver out of the top spot in 2007 and ’08, followed with 16%.

But beyond that, no colors managed to nudge into double-digits.  Red, for example, grabbed just 6% of the market, blue just 5%, and despite their increasing popularity on small cars and sports cars, yellow and gold together managed to eke out just 1% of the demand.


Silver Retains Top Spot In Auto Paint Pantheon

Tenth consecutive year it outshines black, white, red and green.

by on Oct.06, 2010

Silver is the overwhelming favorite paint color for 2010, on models like the new VW Jetta.

Yet again, silver is the favorite choice of American motorists when picking the color for their new products, according to one of the industry’s top paint suppliers.

For the tenth year in a row it has readily outsold such stalwarts as black, white, red and blue – as well as the season’s hip alternatives, like Flaming Orange.

Indeed, silver’s lead is the highest yet seen, according to officials at PPG Industries, accounting for 31% of all new vehicles sold in the U.S. during the 2010 model-year.  That’s up from 25% the prior year and just 8% as recently as 1994, when it began its climb up the charts.

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“There’s clearly been a significant strengthening of silver’s popularity in recent years,” said Jane Harrington, PPG manager of color styling, during PPG’s Automotive Color Trend Show.