Best-Selling Car Colour 2019

21 Jan 2020 by Lisa Simm

We’ve taken a look at the latest registration figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders to discover the nation’s favourite car colour in 2019. In more recent years conservative colour choices have become the mainstay, so it will come as no shock too many that grey is the most popular choice. In fact, grey, black and white (the top three best-selling car colours) accounted for just over 60% of all new cars sold.

Top 5 Best-Selling Colours In 2019

Grey has managed to hold onto the top spot for the second year running as the UK’s favourite car colour with a market share of 22.6%. What’s more, three of the UK’s best-selling cars the Ford Fiesta, Volkswagen Golf and Vauxhall Corsa all sold more in grey.

Black maintained second place, with a 2.4% decrease in registrations in 2019. It’s a firm favourite with buyers having been bestselling car 2009-2012 and has never been out of the top three since 2001. Black is the most popular colour for the Nissan Qashqai, Volkswagen Polo and Mercedes-Benz A-Class.

White is arguably a colour that divides people; some love it while others who hate it. However, despite that, it’s been a popular car colour choice this decade. It held the top spot for three years from 2013-2016, but in 2017 and 2018 dropped back into third position. Its market share dropped by 4.1% in 2019.

Blue – in the ‘90s Blue enjoyed enviable popularity and managed to outsell all other car colours in ’97,’98 and ’99. However, since then its popularity has started to wane. It has still managed to maintain its position in the top ten and since 2010 has ranked fourth and fifth.

Red is another colour people tend to love or hate. As a colour traditionally associated with performance, red has managed to maintain its position as one of the top ten most popular car colours despite current trends favouring more muted colours. However, the hue has shifted from the brash reds of the nineties to more sophisticated dark metallic reds.

line up of car bonnets in different colours

What makes some colours more popular than others?

Firstly, the car industry is not immune to trends, so certain colours may be more popular one year due to this. Another big factor in colour trends can be the options offered by manufacturers. For example, the paint colours offered as standard tend to have higher registration numbers.  

In recent years, more muted colours have become popular. This is thought to be driven by the increased saleability of the car on the second-hand market. More unobtrusive coloured cars tend to hold their value better as they appeal to a wider audience, so if you know you won’t be keeping the car long term, it makes sense to go for a more low-key colour choice.

The exception to the rule is sports variants of models. These tend to be marketed in more outrageous colours to ensure they stand out.  Some colours of note include Ford’s ‘Ultimate Green’ seen on the second-generation Ford Focus RS, ‘Championship White’ popular on the Honda Civic Type R and Renault’s iconic ‘Liquid Yellow’.

But that’s only part of the story as some cars lend themselves to certain colours and there is no escaping it. If you ask anyone to envision a Ferrari car, chances are they’ll imagine a red car (the exact Ferrari red is known as ‘Rosso Corsa’) however, if you ask them to visualise a classic British sports car ‘British Racing Green’ might be the colour that comes to mind.  

rear view of different colour cars

Choosing Your Car Colour

If you’re opting for a brand new car, you’ll have plenty of choices when it comes to colour. The majority of manufacturers have online configurators which allow you to view the car in the various colours it’s available in. But you should bear in mind that while some colours come as standard, others will cost you extra.

If you’re buying used colour is unlikely to be your biggest priority as cost and condition are more practical concerns. However, if you do have a specific colour in mind, you can search our used car stock by colour using the filter menu.

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