Posts from ‘Color’

1971 AMC SC/360

1971 AMC Hornet SC/360

As far as evocative colors go, it’s tough to match the power of the word blue. Blue chip stocks are good investments, a blue mood suggests sadness, and musically, the blues gave birth to rock & roll.

New Car colors for 2017

Damon takes a closer look at the most-interesting colors seen at the 2017 Chicago Auto Show.

2017 Chicago Auto ShowBored with beige? Sick of silver? Weary of white? Tired of tan? Chagrined by champagne? Troubled b… OK, sorry, we’ll stop. Though muted, conservative colors seem to dominate in the new-vehicle marketplace, most manufacturers offer at least a couple unusual hues in their factory-paint palettes. Auto shows are a great place to see these colors up close and in person on a new vehicle, instead of looking at a computer screen or a paint chip at the dealer. If you’re an extroverted type who wants your ride to turn heads, an out-of-the-ordinary color is a great way to do it. Keep in mind, however, that these colors can fall out of fashion much quicker than the “safe” standby colors, which can be an issue come resale time.

1960, Red Car Ads

1960 Willys Jeep brochure

Folks don’t buy a lot of red cars, but they do like to look at them. According to automotive paint supplier DuPont, red was only the fifth most popular new-car color in 2012. The most popular? Plain vanilla while. Snooze.


1958 Chevrolet Brookwood

American car shoppers are something of a dull lot. We like our cars with four doors, we prefer traditional sedans, and when it comes to color, well, it’s snooze time.

According to DuPont, one of the globe’s leading producers of automotive paints and coatings, the top four colors chosen by American new-car shoppers for their vehicles are variations on black and white. Here’s the 2012 list of most popular car colors, as provided by DuPont:

matte finish paint, Veloster Matte Gray Paint Option

2013 Hyundai Veloster Turbo with Matte Gray paint

The new-for-2013 Veloster Turbo adds some much-needed horsepower to the flashy-but-slow base Veloster, Hyundai’s genre-bending compact hatchback that debuted for 2012. As is customary for performance variants of regular-line vehicles, the Veloster Turbo gets a few exclusive appearance features that give it a racier look than its naturally aspirated sibling. Up front is a unique fascia with a larger grille and round fog lights, along with standard projector-beam headlights with LED accents. The rocker panels sport “ground effects” side sills, and the Turbo-exclusive rearview mirrors have integral LED turn-signal indicators. A roof-mounted body-color spoiler, LED taillights, and unique rear fascia with a diffuser and oversize exhaust tips bring up the rear.

Any Color You Want

1977 Dodge Monaco interiors

Henry Ford once said, “Any customer can have a car painted any color he wants, so long as it is black.” For most of its production run, the Ford Model T was only available only in black because black paint dried the fastest and it simplified production to have only one color. Today, BMW has broadened the choice of free colors to black and white on many of its models. If the customer wants something more colorful, that’s a $550 option. Jaguar’s new F-Type sports car has a standard black convertible top. A top of another color is a $600 option. British Racing Green paint, once the most popular choice for an English sports car, is now a $1,500 option on the F-Type.

 Chevrolet Spark Colors

2013 Chevrolet Spark in Techno Pink

If you’re the type of individual who takes responsibility for your car-buying purchases, check out Consumer Guide Automotive’s  full review of the 2013 Chevrolet Spark. However, if you’re one of the 47 percent of Americans who are too lazy to do anything (sorry, just a bit of topical humor there), we’ve got some pretty pictures for you. This is the Spark in all eight of its colors.

1962 Pontiac Catalina with pearly satin finish; 2013 Mercedes-Benz SL 500 with matte finish, Matte Finishes

1962 Pontiac Catalina with pearly satin finish; 2013 Mercedes-Benz SL 500 with matte finish

Over the last few years, I’ve found it interesting to see the emergence of non-glossy paint jobs on some new cars. Mostly appearing on exotic cars these days, matte- or satin-finish paint is something that is very dear to me. I’ve been enamored with the look since I first began to see it in the 1990s on vintage custom cars being built primarily on the West Coast.

2011 Buick Regal with ebony trim and piano-black accents, Piano-Black Interior Trim

Buick Regal with ebony trim and piano-black accents

I can only imagine the challenges facing the people who pick out interior trim for new cars. There’s cost, durability, and, of course, appearance issues—and probably a million other things to take into account, too. And don’t forget that what looks great to some people will look lousy to others.