BASF and Axalta reveal the most popular car colours of 2018

By CRM staff

Toronto, Ontario — January 9, 2019 — White remains the most popular colour for vehicles around the world – but black and grey are on the rise, two new studies from major auto paint manufacturers have revealed.

About 38 percent of all vehicles on the road are painted white, reports by BASF and Axalta show.

In Asia, half of all vehicles are white, while in North America the figure is about 30 percent. More than half – 58 percent – of all vehicles in China, meanwhile, are white.

The next most popular colours are black (18 percent), grey (12 percent) and silver (12 percent). Together, the four most popular coatings – all achromatic colours – make up 80 percent of all vehicle colours.

In fifth place is blue (seven percent), followed by red (five percent), brown/beige (five percent), yellow (two percent) and green (less than a percent). But white’s reign at the top could be limited, with the reports showing it may have peaked in China at 62 percent in 2017.

Hot on its heels are black and grey, both of which saw worldwide increases in popularity.

Nancy Lockhart, Axalta global colour marketing manager, said her team has observed “an emerging trend toward warmer shades” that could “challenge white’s position”.

“Although neutral spaces are the headliners, there is an indication of a return to colour to change the automotive landscape. Blue is most popular outside the neutrals and holding strong at seven percent of the market, increases of orange and bronze are popping up and gaining interest,” she added.

Chiharu Matsuhara, head of automotive colour design for BASF’s Asia Pacific department, said that research on China shows a ‘diversity of chromatic colours’ emerging. “Chinese consumers readily display their colouristic tastes more so than in the past,” he said.


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