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Color Trends

Automotive Color Trends

What's the most popular car color on the planet?

According to PPG's annual automotive color trend data, white continues to be the most popular car color globally based on 2013 automotive build data.

“While white continues to be the most dominant choice in car color, we see growth in the variety of whites being offered to consumers,” said Jane E. Harrington, PPG manager, color styling, automotive OEM (original equipment manufacturer) coatings. “Car manufacturers are seeking ways to create variations of white, silver, black and gray that are specific to their brands and that complement different vehicle types."

Trending colors in the future

Looking ahead, Harrington said drivers may see more blue in 2014 models. PPG’s data has shown increases in the popularity of blue for certain regions and vehicle types, such as an increase in North America this year and more than double the popularity in sport models there between 2011 and 2013.

2016-2017 Automotive Color Palettes

In response to the continued demand for color innovation in automotive coatings, PPG has introduced more than 60 exterior shades to manufacturers for consideration in styling 2016-2017 model year vehicles. Titled “Colorography,” the collection includes five palettes:

  • Hi-Breed emphasizes the new design harmony between man and nature with a palette consisting of neutrals, pastels and bright hues such as Lapis, a brilliant gemstone blue that uses ANDARO® tint dispersions by PPG.

  • Mosaic is based on the wealth of artisan patterns, shapes and prints, as well as their strong colorations, and it includes colors such as Autumn, a vivid metallic orange with colored aluminum flake that evokes an image of fall foliage.

  • New Spirit reflects the primitive, natural colors of a desert sunset with shades such as Sunray, an intense yellow tri-coat color with a high-sparkle glass flake.

  • Magnifigance combines the words magnificent and elegance, and the palette recaptures elaborate styling details and opulent, regal colors for a post-recession world with colors such as Mystic Magenta, a vibrant purple with a unique hue-shift effect.

  • Theorem is a precise and minimal contemporary palette that uses rich brown, red and deep blue as accents for balanced neutrals such as Crisp Grey, a graphite color with a surprise highlight of green metallic.

 Global Color Trends by Region

North America

  • Sport models are most likely to feature shades of red and blue,
  • The largest percentage of gold and beige vehicles is in the minivan segment,
  • Luxury vehicles, 57 percent of which were gray in 2013, are most likely to feature effect
  • finishes in black metallic and white pearl, and
  • Color varies most across sport utility vehicles (SUVs), with relatively equal distributions
  • finished in shades of white, black, blue, red and gray


  • Sport models are most likely to feature colours in the “other” category,
  • The largest percentage of green vehicles is in the sport utility vehicle (SUV) segment,
  • Luxury vehicles are most likely to feature black and grey finishes, and they are least likely to feature white, silver or green.

Asia Pacific

  • Mini car models are least likely to feature gray and green shades, and
  • The largest percentages of black and white vehicles are in the luxury segment.

Andaro is a registered trademark of PPG Industries Ohio, Inc.