Saturday, 18 October, 2008 0:18 AM
Global Vehicle Color Popularity
Starting to Shift, According to PPG
white close gap in North America; blue gains global importance
silver Mercedes-Benz C-class
Mich. -- Silver has once again dominated as the world's most
popular car color but
other shades are gaining ground, especially in North America. This
is according to annual automotive color popularity data released
today by PPG Industries (NYSE:PPG) , the world's leading manufacturer
of transportation coatings.
While silver is still
the most popular car color globally -- capturing 20 percent in North
America, 35 percent in Europe and 37 percent in Asia Pacific --
white and black are close on its heels in North America, tying silver
in popularity in certain vehicle segments.
In North America, silver
(20 percent) was followed closely by white (18 percent) and black
(17 percent - up two percentage points from last year). These were
followed by red (13 percent), blue (12 percent), naturals (9 percent),
other/niche market colors (7 percent) and green (4 percent).
is the most popular car color overall, we're not dealing with the
same old silvers anymore," said Jane E. Harrington, PPG manager,
color styling, automotive coatings. "With advances in technology
and design, silver shades continue to evolve with the incorporation
of hue shifts, color tints, aluminum flake size and appearance.
Silver, along with black and white, is offered on every vehicle
line as part of the core color palette, which also increases its
Despite the steady popularity
of these neutral shades, Harrington said she believes the automotive
future is becoming more multicolored.
"We're seeing more
abundant color use at major auto shows as consumers start to show
increased interest in vivid, intense shades," Harrington said.
"Today's consumers are in tune with brand images, and they
see premium colors on everything from cell phones to washers and
dryers. Good color design is not considered a bonus anymore, it's
In Europe, silver (35
percent) was followed by black (24 percent), blue (12 percent),
white (11 percent), red (8 percent), naturals (6 percent), green
(3 percent) and other/niche colors (1 percent).
In the Asia Pacific region,
silver (37 percent) was followed by white (14 percent), black (13
percent), blue (11 percent), red (8 percent), naturals (7 percent),
other/niche colors (6 percent) and green (4 percent).
Looking to the future,
the colorists of the PPG Global Design and Color Marketing Team
have developed more than 130 color concepts for automakers' consideration
for the 2011-2012 model years. The collection, which emphasizes
PPG's focus on exterior and interior colors, is currently being
presented to automakers during PPG's global color show, called "Influences."
A sampling of new colors
in the Influences collection include: Lights Out, a very deep, dark
blue with the added sparkle of glass flake; Bling, a pale gold with
a subtle color change like a great piece of gold jewelry; Visionary
Violet, a very dark violet with a brilliant sparkle that is influenced
by interior design and the youth fashion market; and Split &
Peel, a fresh pale-banana yellow with a creamy look.
While many future colors
were influenced by the environment -- resulting in a batch of natural-looking
shades and textures -- one of the biggest stories of PPG's show
is the emerging importance of the color blue.
"For the second
consecutive year, blue was the favorite color selected by the 1,200
potential car buyers PPG polled at the North American International
Auto Show in Detroit last January," Harrington said. "Blue
is a very versatile color for automotive and can complement any
vehicle's brand or style."
Blue is being pegged
as the most vital color focus for the global automotive industry
"Blue will be the
new major color area for the coming years," said Reiner Mueller-Koerber,
PPG manager, color styling, Europe. "Dark blues have the potential
to replace traditional dark grays and blacks, while lighter blues
can be seen as variations of tinted silvers. Blue has the ability
to cover the spectrum, from rich and deep to clean and fresh."
Mi Hwa Lee, color stylist,
PPG Korea, said, "Although silver, white and black are still
overwhelmingly popular, it is obvious that many blue tones are increasing
in popularity, especially in China. For that reason, various tones
of blue in hues from medium to dark are being developed specifically
for the Asia Pacific region."
In addition to color
trend forecasting, PPG is creating new paint technologies that enhance
automotive design, exceed appearance requirements and help automakers
differentiate their brands. At this year's Influences show, the
focus is on achieving special effects, whether by simple formulation
or extreme processing techniques.
As part of Influences,
PPG highlights new techniques and materials that stimulate visual
expectations and create complex shades, as well as technically advanced
functional effect colors. For example, designers are creating new
color spaces by incorporating highly color-saturated and durable
ANDARO(TM) nanopigment technology by PPG into traditional and alternative
OEM coating systems.
and function in a decorative coating is a challenge that can only
be met with imagination and technical skills," said Jerry R.
Koenigsmark, PPG manager of color design, North America automotive
coatings. "As we move ahead, we continue to challenge ourselves
and offer our customers forward-thinking ideas in color design."
On the forefront of innovation
in decorative and protective coatings and environmental application
concerns since 1924, PPG helps automakers advance coatings technologies
and application processes.
is a global supplier of paints, coatings, chemicals, optical products,
specialty materials, glass and fiber glass. The company has more
than 150 manufacturing facilities and equity affiliates and operates
in more than 60 countries. PPG shares are traded on the New York
Stock Exchange (symbol: PPG). For more information, visit www.ppg.com.
Andaro is a trademark
of PPG Industries.
Source: PPG Industries