InTrans / Nov 02, 2017

One car, two car, red car, blue car

Go! Magazine

Red carposted on November 2, 2017

Why choose a white car over a red one? Why does car color matter at all?

It’s all about personalization, making the car feel unique and customized to you.

But some car colors come with a certain reputation. For example, there’s a myth that red cars are more likely to get pulled over or ticketed for speeding. They can even warrant higher insurance rates among insurance agencies. How does color factor into why people choose the car they do?


According to 2017 data, white is the most popular car color in seven out of nine countries surveyed by PPG Industries, an American Fortune 500 paint company.

In North America, white continues to be the most popular car color in 2017, coming in at around 25 percent. Other leading car colors include black, grey, and silver. These neutral colors remain popular among consumers. PPG Industries says that they “…represent calm, comfort, and middle ground.” Together, these four colors amount to about 70 percent of the total world car production.

White is the most popular car color
White is the most popular car color. Photo from

White has been the most popular car color for five years. Apple Inc., the company that produces iPhones, computers, and other gadgets, is credited with making white a “cool” color and therefore white also took the lead as the most popular car color in 2011, according to Jane Harrington, the Color Styling Manager in PPG’s Auto Paint Unit (via Forbes).

It’s also been determined that white is the safest color car to drive. White is considered to be the most visible color on the road in almost all conditions, with the exception of snow. Silver is also considered to be a good car color because of its ability to reflect light at night. That said, it’s more difficult to spot in foggy or cloudy weather.


However, white may find itself in competition with a new car color that’s gaining popularity among consumers and is projected to completely take over the market in coming years.

There’s been an influx of blue cars the last few years and experts at PPG Industries say it’s about to replace white as the most popular car color. Harrington says blue offers the “advantage of variety” because it offers versatility. Blue can be light, dark, or even have green or gray tones. The big takeaway here is that blue offers the most options for customization.

There have been more blue cars in recent auto show “reveals,” according to Harrington, whereas before showcased cars were typically black, silver, or red. Tesla, Inc., an American automaker that specializes in solar power, has released metallic blue models in recent years. Could that be adding to the trend?


So, what about the myth that red cars get pulled over more for speeding?

Driver in a red car gets a ticket
Driver in a red car gets a ticket. Photo from Wikipedia via Axion23.

This myth has been deemed “an urban legend,” meaning that although it’s been circulated as true, it isn’t.

The truth is that according to 2014 data, white was the most ticketed car color. White cars accounted for 19 percent of the total traffic citations in one study, although red did come in second at 16 percent. The bottom line is that out of the 34 million speeding tickets given each year in the United States, there’s no hard data to suggest red cars get more tickets than any other.

Red, white, or blue?

Now that you’re in the know, what car color would you choose?

Would you choose white because it’s proven to be the safest, most visible car on the road? Or would you choose red to expel the myth about red cars once and for all? Or perhaps you’re looking for unique customization, in which the trendy blue hues might be more your style.

Going for a joy ride
Going for a joy ride. Photo from pxhere.

All in all, what we know about car color is that it’s a way to personalize your vehicle. Choosing a car color, design, or car feature that is personalized to you is one way to represent who you are as a person. What would your car say about you?


Related links

(Slideshow) Top 10 Most Popular Car Colors:

By Hannah Postlethwait, Go! Staff Writer

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