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LACK cars are like black lin­gerie — they con­vey a sense of mys­tery, so­phis­ti­ca­tion and se­duc­tion.

The colour of car you buy says a lot about what type of per­son you are, ac­cord­ing to post-grad­u­ate re­search stu­dent An­drew Golledge of the Queens­land Uni­ver­sity of Tech­nol­ogy.

Golledge, who has 10 years’ ex­pe­ri­ence in the mo­tor in­dus­try work­ing mainly with ac­ci­dents and break­downs, re­cently bought a black Mit­subishi Lancer.

‘‘Ev­ery man has to have a black car once in his life,’’ he said.

‘‘Black cars talk about mys­tery, so­phis­ti­ca­tion and se­duc­tion.

‘‘It’s the idea that the colour rep­re­sents. Black silk sheets on a bed, black lin­gerie. ‘‘Th­ese are sen­sual things.’’ How­ever, the most pop­u­lar colour choice across the in­dus­try is sil­ver which Golledge said re­flected pres­tige.

‘‘So does cham­pagne gold and, to a lesser ex­tent, beige,’’ he said.

B‘‘Th­ese are the colours of jew­ellery and they ex­ude pro­fes­sion­al­ism and pres­tige. ‘‘Is it any won­der Audi uses sil­ver in all of its pro­mo­tions?’’

Sil­ver is also con­sid­ered a prac­ti­cal and safe colour.

‘‘There was some re­search done in New Zealand a num­ber of years ago which in­di­cated sil­ver is the safest colour to drive,’’ he said.

‘‘They are in­volved in fewer ac­ci­dents and less-se­ri­ous ac­ci­dents com­pared with the next safest which is white.

‘‘Green, brown and black are in­volved in the most ac­ci­dents, so vis­i­bil­ity ob­vi­ously has an im­pact.

‘‘We hu­mans have a prob­lem per­ceiv­ing dif­fer­ences of speed in green cars, maybe be­cause of grassy back­grounds, I’m not sure.

‘‘Black is a more ob­vi­ous thing — when it’s dark you just don’t see a black car as eas­ily.’’

Golledge said men and women per­ceive car colours dif­fer­ently.

‘‘We have stereo­typ­ing in our West- ern so­ci­ety and gen­er­ally it is the man who cleans the car, and I might get into trou­ble for say­ing that, but it is one of the cri­te­ria they con­sider when buy­ing a car.

‘‘Men and women tend to buy dif­fer­ent colour cars. You won’t see too many men driv­ing a pink car.

‘‘Women are more at­tracted to the more be­long­ing colours such as blue which ap­peals to our sense of reli­a­bil­ity and be­long­ing, or yel­low which ap­peals to warmth and hap­pi­ness. ‘‘There are also a lot of or­ange cars on the road at the mo­ment and that’s all about play­ful­ness.’’

Golledge said white cars were the most prac­ti­cal be­cause they faded less in the sun and were cooler.

‘‘You are not ap­peal­ing to any emo­tion when you buy a white car,’’ he said.

‘‘It is a very neu­tral colour and you are not ex­press­ing your per­son­al­ity.

‘‘Of­ten you find that white is the only free colour th­ese days and you have to pay ex­tra for metal­lic and other colours.’’

‘‘They are also per­ceived as be­ing eas­ier to clean, but that is maybe false.

‘‘But the main ad­van­tage of a white car is that it is per­ceived to hold its value bet­ter.’’

Golledge also be­lieves more white cars will have been sold in the past 18 months of the global fi­nan­cial cri­sis, mainly by busi­nesses cash­ing in on the gov­ern­ment’s tax in­cen­tive pack­age.

Holden ex­ter­nal com­mu­ni­ca­tions di­rec­tor Emily Perry said the most pop­u­lar Holden colours con­tin­ued to be black (phan­tom), white (heron) and sil­ver (ni­trate), but white was grow­ing in pop­u­lar­ity.

‘‘It is a prag­matic choice for many buy­ers,’’ she said. ‘‘It is easy to keep clean, of­fers good vis­i­bil­ity and good for re­sale value.

‘‘In­ter­est­ingly though, there is also a grow­ing trend among lux­ury and per­for­mance en­thu­si­asts to or­der white ve­hi­cles, a trend we see among Euro­pean mar­ques as well.

‘‘In many cases white is be­com­ing the new black.’’

Bought by both men and women and usu­ally found on fam­ily cars. It stands for reli­a­bil­ity. Those who choose blue are looking at a more so­cial or be­long­ing as­pect. Some also think blue is cool, as in tem­per­a­ture.

Bought equally by men and women. There has been an up­surge in green cars lately which could chal­lenge the tra­di­tional no­tion of green be­ing re­lated to wealth. Th­ese days green is more about the en­vi­ron­ment. It is no co­in­ci­dence that Ford is pro­mot­ing its Eco­netic Fi­esta with a green car.

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