When you’re choosing your car paint, you’re probably just picking something you like, care for it moderately and enjoy how good it looks on your driveway. But, there’s a whole world of many different car+colour combinations, some of which went in history and became truly iconic. There are a number of hues real aficionados could recognize in a heartbeat thanks to their significance in pop culture, and these are exactly the shades you can find out about here.
Ferrari Rosso Corsa
It would be unimaginable not to start with the most iconic colour in whole automotive history—the Ferrari’s red or Rosso Corsa. It’s probably the most well-recognized car colour even applied, and it can be quite controversial to order a Ferrari in any other colour than this bright red. It’s so sacred to the company that Ferrari doesn’t allow customers to mess with it at all and it needs to stay as it is as long as the company is up and running.
British Racing Green
Motorsport took off in the early 20th century, and about that time, national racing teams were picking out colours—Great Britain took green. Why green? Well, one of the international races in 1902 was held in Ireland, so the UK chose green for their Napier cars to honor the Irish tradition and location.
British Racing Green started quite bright, changing shades depending on the manufacturers, but by the 1920s, it became much darker, like those shades used by Bentley. After the WWII, Jaguar adopted this darker shade of British Racing Green and it pretty much stayed as we know it until today.
We live in the world that worships brands, so having a colour combination that’s instantly recognizable is the Holy Grail of marketing, and Gulf Oil understood that all the way back in the 60s. Gulf’s famous blue and orange combination became synonymous with endurance racing, especially after their cars, Ford GT40 and Porsche, wore these colours at Le Mans.
This well-known palette was actually derived from the Wilshire Oil Company’s colours. In the early 60s, Gulf’s dark blue and dark orange were considered too dark to stand out to motorsport enthusiasts, so after Gulf bought Wilshire, they adopted the company’s hues and made history. Gulf Racing colours have been worn by Ford, Mirage, McLaren, Porsche and Aston Martin drivers and cars.
Honda, Championship White
When you imagine a Type R-badged Honda, you’re probably picturing a white car—it’s truly iconic. This shade might look dull on any other car, but not on Honda. What fans don’t like is that fact that white is quite difficult to maintain since it reacts to elements quite harshly, but if you choose to cover it with the best DIY ceramic coating, you can protect your paint and keep it spotlessly white for years and years. This coating protects your paint from the elements and allows easier cleaning and better shine.
Renault Liquid Yellow
This colour makes Renault’s cars stand out from all other yellow cars, even though it’s not as extreme as other yellow paints. The real beauty of this colour is that it’s not going to scorch your retinas, but you’re still not going to miss this crazy colour coming at you. Other yellows like Ford Citrine Yellow can take notes.
VW Oak Green
All Golf collectors dream about owning an Mk2 Golf GTI 16v in Oak Green. This colour is very rare, but it suits this big-bumpered car perfectly. Due to its rarity, Oak Green GTIs constantly have a higher price when compared to similarly aged and spec’d cars.
BMW Estoril Blue
Remember the BMW E36 M3? This car is probably the best exponent of Estoril Blue perfection, so this is the reason why Audi’s Nogaro Blue is not on this list, but BMW Estoril Blue is. This colour does a great job showing off BMW’s passion for design, especially when it comes to M-badged cars and their sharp creases, flowing lines, large grilles and various other flourishes and aerodynamic elements.
Most of the time, automotive paint designers tend to aim for something bold and loud, but not all of them are like this—just take a look at Audi. Their Nardo Grey is so simple it’s almost menacing. Why? Well, any Nardo Grey car would look perfectly at home on a WWII battlefield, but Audi still manages to pull off this grey on all its powerful RS6’s. Sure, this grey is not as eye-catching as some Ferrari red or Renault yellow, but if you park an Audi in Nardo Grey in a line of supercars, it will definitely attract the most attention due to its uniqueness.
If you’re looking to buy any of these cars, it would be crazy to overlook their most iconic colours. Having a red Ferrari, green Jaguar or a grey Audi will ensure your car holds better value and attracts the most attention in the street.