There’s nothing quite so divisive as a car colour - it’s a key decision for carmakers launching their cars, buyers picking their cars, and second-hand buyers dictating what will sell.
The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) has compiled the top ten biggest-selling colours in the UK, where the six most common colours dominate, taking almost 95% of the car market.
The most popular car colours in the UK:
1 - Black
515,970 registrations, 20.3% market share
Black cars ruled supreme in 2017, with more than one in five registrations being for a black car. It’s the first time black has overtaken white in five years.
2 - Grey
500,714 registrations, 19.7% market share
Grey has shot to second place, with more than half a million registrations. It’s the favourite car colour for buyers in the East Midlands, and has pushed white from first place in 2016 to third place in 2017.
3 - White
482,099 registrations, 19% market share
Close but now usurped, white cars have slipped to third place, despite being the colour preference for drivers in the north. It’s the first time since 2012 that white hasn’t been the colour of choice for UK motorists.
4 - Blue
405,758 registrations, 16% market share
Blue cars haven’t been the UK’s most popular since 1999, but have been in the top ten since records began. It’s now the only primary colour in the top five, as red slipped to sixth this year.
5 - Silver
254,192 registrations, 10% market share
The nation’s favourite between 2000 and 2008, silver is a neutral, safe bet for those wary of residual values. One in ten cars registered across 2017 were silver.
6 - Red
251,104 registrations, 9.9% market share
For the first time in five years, red has slipped out of the top five, replaced by more neutral tones. It’s only by a small margin, but 1.4% of the market has turned away from red in the last year.
7 - Green
26,834 registrations, 1.1% market share
1996’s most popular car colour is relegated to seventh these days, despite modest growth in the last year. It’s got a long way to go before it catches up with sixth-place red, which had nine times the number of registrations in 2017.
8 - Orange
19,064 registrations, 0.8% market share
Orange has crept back into fashion thanks to cars such as the Seat Ateca, meaning a top ten appearance for the first time on record. It remains a niche choice, though, making up just one in every 125 registrations.
9 - Bronze
12,421 registrations, 0.5% market share
Bronze, not brown, made up 0.5% of the UK’s new car registrations last year. Brown fell out of favour, slipping to 11th place, while bronze - part of an orange and bronze trend - came back into the top ten for the first time in six years.
10 - Yellow
10,301 registrations, 0.4% market share
Despite a fall in demand for yellow cars of nearly a fifth, yellow remained in the top ten. Being a rather extrovert choice, it’s not featured in the top five. Ever.
Predictably, pink remains an incredibly rare choice, with fewer than one in every 1900 car buyers thinking pink. The already not-really-substantial bottom fell out of mauve cars, too. Registrations dropped by a third compared with 2016.