Grey was the most popular exterior paint colour for new cars sold in the UK for the fourth consecutive year in 2021, according the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT).
Around 408,155 grey cars were sold in 2021, representing 24.8% of the overall market. Black cars accounted for 20.5% of the market, adorning 337,351 cars, having previously dominated the sales mix between 2009 and 2012.
White took 17.2%, while blue and red were the fourth and fifth most popular colours, and sales of green cars rose for the first time since 2015, with growth of 24% to 17,927 units.
“2021 was anything but normal, but British drivers stuck to their familiar favourites of grey, black and white cars,” said SMMT chief executive Mike Hawes.
“But while last year’s new cars might share the same shades as previous years, under the bonnet there has been a real shift, with one in six buyers choosing to go green.”
The SMMT said grey was the most popular colour in each British nation last year. Around 25.3% of new cars sold in England were grey, while 22.9% in Scotland, 22.8% in Wales and 21.7% in Northern Ireland sported the colour.
Compact cars, city cars and sports cars were most popular in white, while luxury saloons and executive cars were mostly sold in black. The Volkswagen Golf was the most popular grey car, while the Volvo XC40 appealed most in black. The Tesla Model 3 was most sold in white.
Unusual colours were the fastest-growing. Gold rose in popularity by 231.8%, yellow by 33.13% and turquoise by 19.2%. Those three still formed only 0.9% of the overall market, however.