The long-awaited “Most Popular Used Car Colors” List is out, and if your MINI is red… we’re sorry to inform you…
When Henry Ford started selling his Model T’s, he promised his customers they could have them in any color they wanted, so long as it was black. But black is only the third most popular color (?) if you’re going to sell your car “pre-owned”. No, according to British Car Auctions (BCA), the most popular used car color sold in the first three months of 2009 was Silver.
Note to MINI Owners: The Clubman is available in two shades of silver, and the convertible in three!
This is a British list, but it’s still interesting. They looked at data covering over 125,000 vehicles, and Silver took the top spot with nearly 25% of the sales, which is a 1.5-point increase over last year.
In second place was Blue, which was toppled from the top spot, falling by two points to 21.4%.
Back to Black. While Black took third, it posted the biggest increase in share, moving up from fourth with nearly 18% of the total.
Then there were your surprises. Gray was popular on new cars three or four years ago, so that drove up its popularity as a used car color, going from seventh place in 2008 to fourth place in 2009. Red was also a surprise, as it used to be such a favorite color back in the big-hair days of the 80's and early 90's, but today it appears driving styles have changed along with hair styles, and poor old red only just slid into the top five after coming in third last year.
The list also featured more unusual – call them weird - colors, as auto makers try to entice drivers with increasingly subtle shades like Amethyst, Aluminum and Avalon, or Morello, Mulberry, and Mushroom. Our personal favorites were Psychedelic Azure and Carbon Quartz.
BCA's Tim Naylor said "When it comes to colors, manufacturers are clearly flexing their artistic muscles and fashion sensibilities to deliver a bewildering choice of colors and shades. And underlining the growing numbers of women buying cars, we are also seeing softer colors and finishes such as lilac, mauve and pearlescent becoming more popular on certain models."
"Despite that, most motorists appear fairly conservative when it comes to color with silver, blue and black dominating. With most used cars staying in the same ownership for six years or more, it makes sense to choose a color that isn't going to date."
He added "While fashionable colors - such as the current high-impact white finishes - are very appealing now, the worry is that they can just as quickly become deeply unfashionable. In the same way, Limited Editions with over fussy color schemes tend to date quickly."
Naylor concluded "There is of course an element of the self-fulfilling prophecy when it comes to the colors of used cars. But motorists can - and do - choose between different colors on similar models when buying used. For major vendors such as fleet operators and leasing companies, getting the right colors on the cars they purchase new will make them a lot more appealing to buyers when they are sold as used cars."
So there. Now you know.
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