White: now alright?

March 11, 2008 | By | In Statistics

Are you feeling ‘all white’? If you are, you’ve caught a car colour-choice trend.

Are you feeling ‘all white’? If you are, you’ve caught a car colour-choice trend that is speading across Europe. White may be the most popular colour for cars in the United States and Japan. But it’s been bottom of the list here until just lately. But that’s set to change. Fuelled by Brit’s liking for IPods, the Nintendo Wii and other gadgets that look best in white, sales figures for white cars have jumped to 16,500 per year. That’s an 800 increase within a year. And DuPont, who make car paint, has tipped white and white/pearl as ‘trend-shifting’ colours.

Seat’s marketing chief, Steve Robertson, has spotted the trend, too: 'White really could be the new silver – when it comes to fashionable car colours, at least.' Buyers increasingly want a car that stands out on the road, giving them instant recognition and differentiation from 'me too' shades such as grey and silver. White is one of the few colours you can buy at the standard price – if you pick silver or another metallic finish for your new car, sellers often add several hundreds of pounds to the bill because it is listed as an extra. But when you come to trade the car in, buyers of secondhand vehicles dislike white, so unless the trend takes hold, you risk being worse off than if you’d chosen silver or black.

Seat and Volkswagen report healthy sales of white Leon Cupras and Golf GTis – both performance small hatchbacks. But fashionable small cars such as Fiat’s new 500 and Minis now sell strongly in white, too.

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