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Safest car colors

As others have stated, I would not worry too much about the color of a car. Black makes your air conditioner work harder, shows dirt, and is hard to see. It’s the only one I would avoid. In very hot areas, people normally buy white since it reflects the most heat.

Years ago Mercedes did a detailed study on colors and found that BRIGHT ORANGE had the best overall visibility in all kinds on weather and light levels. So my friend bought a bright orange Nissan, and within a year had a collision with, guess what, another bright orange car!!

So, draw your own conclusions.

Thank you for serving.

And now, a link to the response curves of the retina’s cones to different colors…
http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/vision/rodcone.html

Any questions?

My post didn’t post so I’ll post again…

Now, the science behind the question: http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/vision/rodcone.html

New firetrucks are that ugly yellow-green. It does show up well. They moved away from red because it’s difficult to see at night… ever wonder night lighting for cockpits and conning towers is red? It has very little effect on vision. People see red poorly in low light conditions. On WWII warships, lifejackets were red for a long time, until someone realized that people wearing them in the water at night were difficult to see with night-adapted vision.

I have to agree that personality can play a large role in selecting a car color (bright colors like red being associated with more aggressiveness and lack of control), which could play a role in increased crashes by certain colors. Visibility to others is no doubt also important.

small community near where I live has lime green for their trucks

Lime green…that’s what I meant, not neon green. I think it’s a better colour for them than the red, what do you think?

For anyone interested in the actual studies,…
http://sunnyvale.ca.gov/reports/1997-08/97-350.htm

I think that having to ride around in a lime green truck is bad for morale. There is a reason many fire fighters personally drive fire engine red pick-up trucks. For fire fighters’ morale alone, the trucks should be red.

it’s mostly a volunteer fire department, so they don’t really have a say in it. also, because it’s volunteer, most have their own trucks that they drive to the site in case they get called while out and about.

Ok there is safety in color, statistically this has been tested. There are many factors, but the statistical tests take those into account by balancing with covariates, all the other factors. This is not easy to explain in a short note, but the methodology has been around for almost a century and computers have made it extremely accurate and efficient. Mountainwalker’s post is very convincing. If you have to drive in heavy traffic color does matter, it can lower the probability of you being in an accident.

Let me just say that I drive a grey car that is the same exact color as most of the pavement I drive on. In the 6 years I have owned this car, I have been rear-ended three times while driving and was struck from the side twice while the the car was parked in parking lots. People just don’t see this car. I ALWAYS drive with lights on, so that aspect is not an issue here. This car is just not seen. I would never ever ever buy another grey car.

I agree. My grey 1985 Buick Skyhawk got hit by several cars thoughout its life. My red 1998 Civic has never been hit. While it is probably true that red can’t be seen well at night, I believe there is no better color than red during the day. Lights can help at night more than car color. Take a look at all the motorcycle accessories that increase night time visibility. They have special brake lights that flash. They have trim lights that flash funky patterns when you press the brakes. Amazingly, most of these accessories are legal.

If you really worry about being seen at night, add a reflective red license plate frame to the back of your car and DOT tape used by commercial trucks on the sides. Reflective materials are better than any paint color for adding visibility. You can tastefully add reflectors or marker lights on the sides if the other lights can’t be easily seen from the side.

If you want to be seen during the day, focus on color. If you want to be seen at night, focus on aftermarket lights and reflectors.

as long as we don’t see too many people with under body neons on :stuck_out_tongue:
while they might be great for visibility, they’re also an attraction for police vehicles as well

A two-toned green & silver Outback would be safest in the water. Like a fish or a whale, it is light colored on the bottom so that deep-water predators cannot see it against the sky, and dark on the top to camouflage it against the dark sea depths when seen from above. See, you’ll be fine!

Remember the Bricklin? It was sold in several colour schemes, all with safety in mind.

Let’s see…Safety Orange, Safety White, Safety Green and (I think) Safety Yellow.

Sooooo…I’m guessing one of those four colours would be your best bet.

i was interested when i saw this topic only because i have noticed, on a personal level, that the cars that i don’t see, that seem to pop out of nowhere - are almost always silver. this is during the day of course, at night the headlights eliminate this problem. but personally i’ve grown to dislike silver cars only because i don’t see them soon enough. that said, i think that a two-toned car, like the outback, would not have the same effect because the top is a different color.

I realize some colors are more “visible” than others. However, if you mean what you just said about not seeing certain colors, you should have an eye test, and maybe stop driving before you kill someone. There have been various posts on this thread about multiple collisions by some persons, and blaming it squarely on the car color. The term “accident-prone” has not been mentioned yet, until now.

Knowing your own limits is important, and my friend with the bright orange (highly visible) Nissan crashing into another bright orange car, did not blame it on the car colors. I grew up in an area with snow storms and bad visibility many months of the year. The few accidents I’ve had were strictly due to INATTENTION on my part. An exception was being rear-ended by an auto parts supply truck on a bright sunny day. Some people will go to any length to drum up business!!

The Canadian government proactively legislated day time running light on all cars and motorcycles. I’m not sure if this reduced accidents, but it should at least have reduced head-on collisions. Agree that relectors are a great idea; it will hopefully reduce being sideswiped.

My wife nicknamed my 66 red Malibu my “invible car” since it was hit several times while parked. Yet it was quite visible compared to grey cars, for example.

It probably wasn’t THAT invisible, they were probably too busy staring at it to notice how close they got to it.

I miss my blue 65 Malibu :frowning:

i guess i knew it would be a problem to post this opinion without posting my driving history as well. contrary to what you read into my post, Docnick, i have never had an accident - ever. my eye tests reveal perfect vision. i grew up in Maine and still live here (we have snow, fog, heavy storms). i am a very attentive driver - always use my signal, always pay attention to posted limits, always look around me, never talk on my cell phone, etc. and quite frankly, i get very annoyed when i see other people not paying attention or disobeying the rules because they’re not just having an affect on themselves, but on me as well (they could cause an accident). so, i take inattention seriously and perhaps that is why i’m not fond of silver cars - it could be someone less attentive would never notice the car at all.

in any case, i was simply interested that someone else has pondered the same question and enjoyed reading the observations of others here.