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best color car paint that last the longest

What color paint should I paint my car that will not fade as fast as others?


  • It's not the color so much as the surface preparation, type of paint, and how it's applied.

    You state "I paint..." my car so does this mean you're doing it yourself or having it done?
  • White, properly applied, holds up the best...

  • It's not the color that matters. The quality of the paint and quality of application determine its longevity. Choose whichever color you like best.

  • Agree with Caddyman. White, even if they use clearcoat (e.g., Mercedes, BMW) lasts the longest. I live in Sacramento where the 110F summer days and blazing sunshine are rough on paint.

    1981 Toyota, white, owned 17 years, looked like new when sold
    1991 Volvo wagon, White, owned 19 years, looked like new when sold
    1997 BMW, White, looks perfect

    Worst colors - metalics with clearcoat - dark red, dark grey, or black.

  • A lighter solid (non-metallic) color would be the best choice. Metallic generally is aluminum flake and will corrode when exposed to elements. Especially if not clear coated or as the clear coat begins to wear away.

  • How long do you plan on keeping it???

    Just keep it polished and waxed and ANY color will last 10+ years.
  • I think lighter colors hold up better than darker colors by a bit. They also don't show scratches and dirt as much, which is nice. Finally, my understanding is that lighter colors are easier to match when doing paint work. (On the other hand, a black car looks really great when it's perfectly clean!)

    However, I'm not a big fan of white, unlike some of the folks above. I've seen too many white cars that have yellowed over time.
  • I think color is not as important as the quality of paint job. There are $500 jobs and $5,000 (or more) jobs. Which kind are you taking about?
  • I vote for white with clearcoat.

    White reflects all of the sun's energy in the visual range. The darker the color, the more of that energy is absorbed rather than reflected. That energy, and the heat it creates, causes the paint to dry out and oxidize. The less of the energy that's reflected, the less of that process goes on. The less of that process that goes on, the longer the paint lasts. Clearcoat helps too, since it's an added layer of protection.

    Having said that, any color will look good for many years of it's kept clean and waxed. That is absolutely the single best thing you can do for a finish, no matter the color.
  • edited May 2011
    And, if the car is garaged in addition to being kept clean and waxed, it will still look very good many years later. I have had cars of virtually any color that you can name and they all looked showroom new--even after as many as 10 years--because they were kept clean, waxed, and garaged at night.

    The only exception was my POS '74 Volvo, whose paint was totally chalked on the horizontal surfaces after only 2 years. However, at that time, I lived in a town that had a lot of industrial pollution from refineries, chemical plants, and pharma companies. I suspect that these airborne contaminants ruined the paint on that car.
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