Color is a key factor in 88% of vehicle purchasing decisions, according to a survey conducted by liquid and powder automotive coatings supplier Axalta.
The company’s Automotive Color Preferences 2021 Consumer Survey collected responses from more than 4,000 participants aged 25 to 60 in four of the largest vehicle-producing countries: China, Germany, Mexico and the U.S.
“The psychology of color is a powerful influencing factor in automotive purchasing decisions. Frequently, color reflects the personality of the vehicle owner,” Nancy Lockhart, global color manager-mobility coatings at Axalta, says in a news release. “What’s interesting is that elegance, stability and positivity were predominant color characteristics desired by respondents surveyed.”
The survey also explored paint-finish and paint-effect preferences. High-gloss finishes were preferred by all markets surveyed except for China, where results showed a near-even split between high-gloss and matte finishes (48% high gloss vs. 52% matte).
Paint-effect preferences across the surveyed markets were not as similar as results for paint-finish preferences. Solid effects were the top choice of respondents in the U.S. and China, whereas German respondents chose pearlescent and Mexican respondents chose coarse metallic and pearlescent as their preferred paint effects.
“The development of unique and new colors that meet the needs of our customers’ brands and consumer preferences is a key factor in understanding market trends,” Lockhart says. “It is exciting to see how bolder colors are becoming more and more popular in the minds of consumers. Reds and blues are clearly rising in preference. It’s possible we’ll see more colors on the road with brilliant effects in the not too distant future.”
Survey highlights by country:
- China: Color is important for 99% of respondents in China when purchasing a vehicle. The preferred colors are white (29%) and black (26%). Red and blue ranked fifth and sixth. Of those surveyed, 64% would change manufacturers if they didn’t find their preferred color. Among these respondents, 93% are the sole decision-maker of the vehicle color purchased, while 7% rely on others to assist in the decision.
- Germany: Of those surveyed in Germany, 83% said color is important when purchasing a vehicle. With 63% of respondents being the sole decision-maker about the vehicle’s color, 37% confer with family in the decision-making process. Black is the preferred color with 32%, while blue came in second with 16%. German participants consider black as a color that reflects elegance and blue reflects stability. In this region of the world, slightly more than one-quarter of survey respondents (27%) own a black compact vehicle.
- Mexico: For 90% of respondents in Mexico, color is a key factor when purchasing a vehicle. Red is the preferred color with 22% and is the top selection for both genders. Four out of 10 people surveyed in Mexico mentioned they would change manufacturers if they didn’t find the color for which they are looking. Red reflects an elegant personality and blue reflects positivity, according to respondents in Mexico.
- U.S.: Color is an important factor when purchasing a vehicle for 79% of American respondents; nearly half of all respondents (46%) state color is very or extremely important. Of those surveyed, 82% of respondents in the United States say vehicle color is an individual decision and 53% of households have more than one vehicle. Although black is an overall trend, truck owners are choosing more colorful versions of blue (No.2) and red (No.3). Blue reflects positivity and red represents a sense of adventure in the minds of survey respondents in the U.S.
More information about Axalta’s Automotive Color Preferences 2021 Consumer Survey and country-specific survey findings is available at www.axalta.com/color