Monday 17th October 2016
What is the most popular car colour?

What colour is your car? The nation’s favourite car colour changes year to year as the latest trends influence our choices. With black, silver and blue remaining in the top positions, unusually brown has now made it to the top ten.

Rob Hull, The Mail Online, reports:

An unlikely contender has made it into the list of the ten most popular new car colours - brown.

There are some 30 million cars on the road in the UK today, but do you know what the most common motor colour is? 

Using information collected by the DVLA at the end of the first quarter of 2016, here's a run-down of the nation's most selected car shades.

10. Brown

That's right, the chocolate palette is making a comeback. A common colour choice of the 1970s, brown has become an increasing popular tone in vehicle brochures.

According to DVLA data, 169,656 of the nation's 30,459,456 licensed cars are mud-coloured. Although, that represents just 0.6 per cent of all the vehicles on the road in the UK today.

But there's certainly no doubting the recent brown rejuvenation when you compare stats to three years ago - in the first quarter of 2013, just 92,226 brown motors were on the road in the country.    

9. Yellow

Fear not, the chances of you receiving a dead arm when a fellow passenger spots a banana-coloured car is on the decrease, as yellow is a declining vehicle colour choice in the UK.

There's even a list of rules for the yellow car games we were totally unaware of -  Rule 1 states: 'If a player sees a yellow car they may hit whoever they choose. The force of the hit should only be sufficient to ensure that the intended person knows that they have been hit, unless otherwise accepted by all players concerned.' You learn something new every day. 

There were 172,297 sun-toned motors on the road at the end of the first quarter of 2016. That is three per cent fewer than in the same period of 2013.  

8. Beige/buff

Much like brown, you might associate beige motors with the 1970s - think Austin Allegros and Ford Cortinas of that era. But it's a non-mover in terms of popularity for British drivers, with 235,683 opting for what may be seen as a traditionally bland but can flatter a car.

In fact, of all the car colours to feature in the top 10, beige is the only one that's remained static - at the end of the first quarter of 2013 there were 235,052 cappuccino-coloured motors in the UK, which represented the same 0.8 per cent of the market as it did by the end of the same period this year.

And it's not just mainstream cars that are ordered in the champagne shade - premium brands are offering beige and buff to improve the classy perception of their line-up, such as Bentley with the new Bentayga SUV.

7. Green

It's easy to associate this tone with British Racing Green, especially in the UK, but carmakers are diversifying their leafy options today.

Pastel shades are now common on super-small models, like the new Citroen C3, Fiat 500 and Renault Twingo. And even supercar builders are seeing a spike in green car sales - it's one of the most popular choices for the McLaren 650S and Lamborghini Huracan.

But according to the DVLA, green is no longer the colour of envy - it's closer to becoming the colour of ending. That's because green vehicle sales are down by 30 per cent compared to three years ago, making up just 3.5 per cent of all motor shades in 2016 with 1,066,496 on the road - 466,563 fewer than in 2013.

6. White

Many have linked the influx of white car sales to the 'Apple Effect', where people try to match their worldly belonging to their smartphones and latest technology devices. Whatever the reason for the growing trend, white car sales are still in big demand.

The DVLA said that 2,833,084 of the country's motors are white, accounting for 9.3 per cent of the total. That's up by an incredible 91 per cent since 2013.

And carmakers are cottoning on, especially as resale values of white cars seem to be on the rise. Many brands have now removed white from their list of no-cost colour options, instead charging extra

5. Red

It wasn't all that long ago that red was up among the three most popular car colours in the country, but the rose-tinted spectacles have been removed in recent years.

With the emergence of white as a popular car colour, many brands now offer red as their flat-tone, no-cost option for paint. The majority of buyers side-step it in favour of gleaming metallic choices that depreciate at a slower pace.

Still, 10.6 per cent of all cars in the country are rouge, which is a four per cent increase on the first quarter of 2013. In total, there are 3,237,326 red cars in the UK today.

4. Grey

We're pointing our finger firmly at the executive German brands for the recent spike in grey cars. BMW and Mercedes-Benz in particular loves the colour and offers it on its whole breadth of models, and with matte paints becoming increasingly popular it is no surprise to see grey scaling the table.

And yes, matte is correct there in terms of car paint types.

The DVLA said that there were 3,710,965 grey vehicles on the road at the end of March this year - that's an increase of 21 per cent on the 3,074,210 at the end of the same month in 2013. 

Flat, metallic or matte - no matter how many shades of grey there are, this one colour makes up 12.2 per cent of all vehicles colours in the country.

3. Blue

One car colour that's going through an indifferent period is blue - the DVLA said that the nation's drivers owned five per cent fewer cars by the end of the first quarter of this year compared to the same time three years ago.

Still, 5,689,516 blue cars make up 18.7 per cent of all the motors on the road in the UK today.

2. Black

Back in 2010, black was the most popular new car colour. But it's been superseded since with white being the most ordered tone for the last three years running. That said, black is still a more common sight on the roads today than white.

According to the data provided by the DVLA, nearly one in five UK cars are a Darth Vader tone. A sum of 5,915,527 night-shaded vehicles were counted at the end of the first quarter of 2016, which is up 13 per cent on the same time three years previous.

Harder to keep clean and the worst choice for showing up blemishes and damage, UK drivers are still drawn to the darkest option. That might be because it's one of the most desirable, meaning cars lose value slower.

1. Silver/aluminium

So here it is, the silver lining - the most metallic tone is also the most selected in the UK.

A total of 6,841,315 registered silver cars were counted by the DVLA, making up 22.5 per cent of all motors on the road today - that's 925,788 more than black cars.

But despite silver reflecting a massive lead at the top of the colour charts, it's actually in decline. 

Compared with 2013 figures, there are seven per cent fewer metal-looking models in the country at the moment. Like black, it's expected to stay high on the leader board thanks to great demand on the second-hand market, meaning value retention is stronger than other colours.

The colour of your car can affect its saleability, so it’s always worth noting the colour and knowing if it’s a classic or an unusual one which may have a detrimental effect in the long term.

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