IT’S OFFICIAL: white is the new black, again. The most popular colour chosen by Britain’s new car buyers is white, according to figures released by the Society of Motoring Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). The car, which some have long believed belonged with fridges and washing machines as popular white goods, has been painted in the conservative ‘colour’ more than any other for the second year running.
The SMMT, which records car sales data, revealed that of the 2,476,435 new cars registered in the UK in 2014, 22% were white – representing the highest proportion of white cars registered in since records began in 1996 – ahead of 19% finished in black.
For years, white was considered the least-favoured of all the car colours, but over the past decade it has grown in popularity, most recently helped by a trend for specifying high performance supercars in the pallid palette, which seems to have inspired buyers of less expensive vehicles.
In 2005, less than 1 per cent of the UK’s new car buyers chose white, rising to 10% five years later. Silver is the colour that has suffered the most over the years, with the number of cars registered in 2014 dropping to just 13 per cent, compared to 21 per cent in 2010.
CAP, a used vehicle valuation company, said it believes that white can add between £100 and £300 to the value of a popular family hatchback like the Ford Focus.
But it’s not all bad news for black and silver cars, as Rupert Pontin, head of valuations at Glass’s, a used car valuations company, explains: “Black and grey cars are consistently popular and always return good money in the trade, generating good demand on the used pitch too.
Pontin cautions that drivers should be wary of white, as not all models look good in the colour and therefore residual value could be affected.