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by Tim Beissmann

White has retained its title as the most popular automotive paint finish for 2012 and has stretched its lead over colour according to the latest survey by leading automotive coating supplier PPG Industries.

PPG’s annual automotive colour popularity and trend survey reveals 22 per cent of vehicles sold around the world this year have rolled out of the factory with a white paint finish, up one per cent from 2011.

Silver, which was dethroned by white last year after a decade at the top, held ground at 20 per cent of total automotive sales, while black slipped back one per cent to 19 per cent overall in the 2012 survey.

Grey (12 per cent), red (nine per cent), natural (eight per cent), blue (seven per cent), green (two per cent) and other colours (one per cent) made up the remainder of the fleet.

While white has opened up a small gap over the rest of the field this year, PPG Industries’ automotive OEM coatings colour styling manager, Jane Harrington, expects the proliferation of colour across other consumer industries to influence future vehicle colour trends.

“The palette being developed for the automotive segment continues to be influenced by culture, nature, fashion, interior design, colour popularity and new pigment technology,” Harrington said.

White shares the honours with silver in our Asia Pacific region, with 23 per cent of the palette each, with black (19 per cent), natural (10 per cent) and red (eight per cent) filling the top five.

While announcing 2012’s results, PPG presented 64 new exterior paint colours to automotive designers for consideration for 2015-2016 model year vehicles.

Included on the list of colours that could be headed to a showroom near you is Al Fresco, “a silver metallic with fresh green tint”; Victoria Grey, “a classic grey with an iridescent highlight of gold metal”; Opulence, “a refined red pearl with intense jewel tone”; Glacier, “an icy graphite grey with a slight violet blue tone”; Sunshine, “a bright high-sparkle intense yellow”; and Elixir, “a metallic mixture of silver and magenta”.




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