As we assess the fallout for the lost year that was 2020, there are lots of miscellaneous figures and facts that will no doubt surprise, entertain, reaffirm or depress us, depending on your point of view.

So, what is the most popular colour of car bought new in 2020? Unsurprisingly and perfectly apt, its Grey.

Looking Pale

But it’s not the first year, but rather the third year in a row.

According to the latest figures released today by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), 397,197 grey units were sold over the course of 2020, just shy of a quarter (24.3%) of all new cars sold.

Appropriately, black and white took second and third place overall, completing a monochrome podium. More than six in ten (61.6%) of all new cars entering British roads in 2020 painted in these three shades.  The rest of the top 10 remained unchanged, apart from yellow and bronze which reversed places.

Colourful Outlook

Yellow, known for its anti-depressant qualities increased its market share by 50%, but equivalent to only 6,816 sales. Strong, confident Red saw its registrations drop below 200,000 for the first time in a decade to 147,222, recording its worst tally since 1997.

While the top colour for both petrol and diesel cars was grey, with 248,182 and 84,489 registered in the colours respectively, white was the most in-demand tint for zero emission battery electric vehicles (BEVs) with 25,689 painted in it whilst black was the most popular shade for plug-in hybrids (PHEVs) with 17,989 registered. It was a record year for these electrified vehicles, which together accounted for more than one in 10 registrations – up from around one in 30 in 2019.

When it comes to more distinct colours, Pink was most popular in Leicestershire (23.7% of cars sold). Orange was the choice of the West Midlands, and Blue on the Isle of White and in the Borders.

Bright Lights on the Horizon

Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive, said: “2020 was a pretty dark year for the automotive industry and having grey as the top new car colour probably reflects the atmosphere. The sector, however, continues to provide valuable mobility, from vans delivering essential goods to private cars helping key workers do their jobs, and click and collect offers a lifeline for the industry, helping to keep manufacturing going.”

When it comes the the more environmentally conscious, the pure White topped sales of EVS and hybrids.

I wonder what the colour of choice was for ADIs?