Before I became custodian of our Mazda 6, I must admit to having had doubts about whether I really wanted to drive around in a white car.

For all the hype a couple of years back about white being set to replace silver as the number one car colour, it's still very much a minority taste unless you either pilot a van or routinely say "hello" three times at the beginning of every sentence. Even after three months in the 6, I still feel like I'm standing out like an iceberg in the fast lane.

That said, I've become a huge fan of the way the 6 looks with its optional Crystal White Pearl Mica. It shows the car's muscular contours off far better than the dark hues that most of its brethren seem to run around in. And, let's face it, I'm never going to lose it in a car park.

But the summer has also revealed an issue with running something this bright and white. However often I clean the Mazda, within a couple of hours the front end always looks like an insect version of Texas Chainsaw Massacre. This picture was taken after a three-hour motorway run: if I don't clean it for another couple of days, it will pretty much turn red.

Of course, all cars get bombarded by bugs at this time of the year, but the 6 does seem to attract them like nothing else - and there's no hiding the kill tally. If you're considering buying a metallic white car yourself, make sure you factor the extra cost of washing into the equation. I'm on first name terms with the guys who scrub cars at my local supermarket.

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