White continues to top the charts as Britain’s favourite colour when drivers are choosing a new car. But why is it so popular?
This is the third year in a row that white has topped the charts, with 564,393 white cars registered, ahead of black (509,677), grey (411,717), blue (386,432) and red (318,897). The decline in popularity of silver cars (which held the top spot between 2000-2008) continues, with 5.2 per cent fewer cars chosen in 2015 than the previous year, figures released by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders show.
White as a colour for cars has had a remarkable turnaround in popularity in the last 11 years; in 2004, just 0.68 per cent of new cars were white, compared with 21.4 per cent in 2015. The trend is thought to be down to several factors, including the “Apple effect”, where car makers jumped on white being the colour for trendy and futuristic products, plus the fact that the sharper creases of car design now are better suited to white than the curvier shapes of the past.
Then there’s the influence of aspirational models such as the VW Golf GTI, BMW M3 and Audi TT, which brought white back into buyers’ minds.
And, on a more prosaic level, metallic hues almost always carry a price premium, whereas white has taken over from red as the colour that most often comes at no extra cost, making it particularly attractive to fleet operators.
As proof that there are still people out there with some imagination when it comes to choosing the colour of their new car, brown, orange and mauve cars all made the top 10 list with increases in popularity of more than 20 per cent compared with 2014.