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Shiny Red Sports Cars

When one thinks of a new sports car, they may conjure up a mental image of a sleek, low-slung, curve-hugging engineering marvel. Quite often, that image is painted bright red. From “Little Red Corvette” to the pervasive (yet untrue) urban legend that red cars cost more to insure, the public seems captivated by the notion of a red sports car.

So, it would certainly not surprise anyone if I were to tell you the most popular color for small cars and sports cars is red. However, if were to tell you that, I would be lying.

The DuPont Automotive Color survey tracks color popularity among new car purchases annually. Interestingly, the results from both 2003 and 2004 show red is not the most popular color for sports cars.

20% of new sports cars purchased in both 2003 and 2004 were silver in color, making that the most popular color choice.

Red sports cars, however, still retain a great deal of popularity. In both surveys, red sports cars were the second most commonly purchased. 16% of sports car purchases in 2003, and 17% in 2004 were painted red.

That’s still a significant percentage of the total market, but it is surprising to realize that red sports cars make up less than one-fifth of the total purchased in the United States in any given year.

Black and blue sports cars are right on the heels of their red counterparts. Each accounted for 14% of sales according to the extensive DuPont survey.

While we continue to associate the idea of new sports cars with a bright red, shiny paintjob, the statistics show that association is not quite in line with car buying reality. Although still a very popular paint scheme for new sports autos, red is not the most popular hue for hot-rodders.

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