Troy, Michigan – White is the most popular vehicle colour in the world, with silver and black tied for second place, according to PPG Industries. Approximately 21 per cent of 2011 model-year vehicles worldwide are white, with silver and black at 20 per cent.

In North America, white was first (20 per cent), silver second (19 per cent), black third (18 per cent) and grey fourth (15 per cent). Red and blue were tied for fifth place, “naturals” such as brown, tan, gold, orange and yellow were sixth, green was seventh, and other/niche colours were last.

Black is the most popular in Europe, followed by white, silver, grey, blue, red, naturals, green and other/niche colours, while in the Asia/Pacific silver is tops, followed by white, black, grey, red, naturals, green and other/niche.

“Colour is one of the most basic means of human expression,” said Jane Harrington, PPG manager, colour styling, automotive coatings. “The palette of colours being developed for the automotive segment is being influenced by culture, nature, fashion, interior design, media, auto shows, colour popularity and new pigment technology.”

Other findings from the study include:

– 48 per cent of the automotive consumers who responded said they generally choose products based on colour

– 77 per cent said exterior colour was a factor in their automotive purchase decision

– About 31 per cent said they are willing to pay extra for a vehicle that expresses their personality through colour, and owners of large luxury cars, sporty cars and large premium SUVs are willing to pay the most extra to get the colour of their choice

– 40 per cent would prefer a wider range of colour choices

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