It’s been said white cars retain their value better, and reports show the color becoming more popular among new car buyers, with our own Paul Niedermeyer having recently bought a spiffy white wagon himself. If you read the comments on these pages, or in any other car enthusiast forum, however, it would appear people don’t care for the color; in fact, many of them list it as their least favorite.
Certainly, a car’s styling has a lot to do with which colors suit it best. While white is rarely my first choice, I think it looks very good where a car’s styling sports straight lines and a long, lean look. More round, curvy cars, without contrasting trim or large glass areas to break up the monotony, do not look as good in lighter colors. That is why cars like this Subaru, with its pseudo-hardtop styling and low belt line, look so good.
So what say you? Is white always a bad color? Is it anyone’s favorite color? Does it look good only on certain shapes? Is it ever the best choice for a car? Inquiring minds want to know.
Fascinating topic. My father LOVED white cars, and had a whole slew of them. Personally, I can take it or leave it. My favorite white cars are from the 1960s or 70s where there is lots of stainless trim, like on the Connie or the New Yorker, as above. My 66 Fury III was white, as was my 64 Imperial, and they were both very attractive. Come to think of it, so were my 59 Fury and my 84 Olds 98.
My least favorite white cars come from the era of flat black or gray plastic trim slathered all over the car, so common in the 80s or early 90s. My Honda Fit is white, but is (mostly) a monochorome with aluminum wheels and only a teensy bit of black trim around the windows. Geez, I guess I’ve had quite a few white cars too.
My car-mentor Howard used to say that white paint lacked certain chemicals from pigments and were not as durable. I did find that I needed to wax my older white cars more often to keep them shiny. Anybody have any info on this?
I agree with Howard. If you look at the white cars and trucks in the Houston area, if they are anywhere near the chemical plants they all have the white paint flaked off on the top surfaces. Combination of sunlight and chemicals I would imagine. Certainly have seen it with the 3 domestic brands but drove it for 3-4 years with my S-10.
I am pretty sure that a 95 4Runner is the answer to the question. Cool in the east Texas summer. When the paint goes ( I expect it will but it hasn’t yet) I think possibly white monstaliner or something similar. Hope that it and I both last that long.
I love white cars. I had an ’88 Fiero an a ’96 TransAm in white. My current white car — for the last 14 years now — is a white ’63 Imperial convertible.
Not my first choice, by no means, but I admit, it does fit that Chrysler & Continental! As a matter of fact, the only car that I don’t like out of the three posted, is the Subaru! 🙂
It can look sharp on an older car with a matching white interior. Not the most practical of course. But really any car that looks good in white generally looks even better in a real colour! 🙂
+1 that New Yorker would look even nicer in black or a deep red.Never had a white car and would sooner have a real colour
I have always loved white cars. I like the color best when it is a bright, solid white (no pearl flake) and on 80s cars where there is a contrast with the black-out trim. Looks great on boxy designs like the Volvo 740T and also on curvy designs like the Porsche 911. Sportier than even bright red to me.
On older cars I like it to be more of a creamy white like on that Chrysler. White passed Silver a while ago as the most popular color on new cars. It hides the dirt well, imperfections in the body/paint and is relatively easy to repair. It stays cooler in the sun and is less prone to fading. On many of the 80s Porsches and Mercedes the white color was not clear coated, another plus in my book.
I recall reading years ago that from 1960-69, white was the most popular color on new Chevrolets. I guess it’s back.
Mine, of course! 🙂
Yes, most of my cars have been white, although mostly not by choice. My white ’63 Corvair was given to me; both the ’64 and ’63 Beetles just happened to be white (that deep VW Perlweiss). I did paint my Peugeot 404 white, as it was a very unpleasant faded very light baby blue. My white ’81 Skylark was a company car that had been bought before I got it. And I did want (and get) my ’86 300E in white, although it was a cooler white than I had expected. I struggled with regrets over that one. And once again, my xB was bought used, and happened to be white, which I certainly wasn’t unhappy about.
But “Stephanie’s cars” have all been non-white, so far. The Cherokee was a metallic-brown. The Caravan was red. And the Forester is dark green. And she does like bright colors.
Re: the new TSX wagon: I really didn’t want to foist a white car on Stephanie. But the color choices were profoundly limited. Of the (theoretical) colors available, the blue and red were both appealing. But the only other Sport Wagon available w/o the Tech Package was charcoal gray, and since it’s gray here half the year, we both didn’t want that.
As it turns out, Stephanie likes the white on this car, especially so since it also comes with the light-colored upholstery, which really lightens the interior. I would have held out for something more colorful, but she was adamant about the white. How great is that?
Admittedly, white works better on some cars than others, and Perry has already made a case for that here. I do find myself admiring some of the better colorful paint jobs out there, but just can’t take the all-too common silvers, metallic greys, charcoals, etc.. I would have been very happy to buy the Acura in its available blue, or maybe the red. And I love some of the other less-common colors showing up nowadays. I saw a Prius in a great shade of purple. And if I had found an xB in Copper Penny (below), I would have bought it.
But white is both practical (cool in summer; visible in the dark/rain); is easy to keep looking good and touch-up (non-metallic), and there is something pure and clean about it that speaks to me.
When my mother saw the second-gen xB for the first time, she decided she simply must gen a first-gen while they still could be purchased new. When the only one I could find for her with a manual transmission was Brazed Copper Penny, she wasn’t terribly happy about the color.
Until she saw it in the sun. After that, she loved it. It shifts from a dusty rose color through brown to a greenish gold. It’s really an amazing color.
My rear-ended, totally Xb was a Torched Penny (sob). It really was a beautiful and distinctive color- calling it a color is almost a disservice. Parking lot attendants used to ask me where I got my paint job.
I joke, I joke. I keed, I keed.
Hey; it’s true. And it’s at least as reliable as a Whirlpool washer. Ten years; zero repairs. Oil, filters, tires; nothing more. It’s my “fleet car”, to service my rentals. And I’ve had some pretty good sized appliances in the back of it.
I’ve never liked white (or black) cars of any kind, but damn, that New Yorker is a knockout!
I’m fond of the ’61 Impala bubble top in white with red or black in the side trim piece.
I think the problem with white is that the cut lines and creases show up starkly. Particularly in grimy climes (such as we have in Seattle, at least this winter) the dirt collects around those lines and creases, and the car looks slipshod.
I agree the Continental and New Yorker look good in white. But that Subaru – the rub strip on the door will collect all the Seattle mud on top and underneath. So will the creases on the belt line and along the bumpers. Not a good color for that car.
If it looks slipshod, then wash it!!!
A car with good lines will show white well. If it has vast amounts of real estate dedicated to bizarre trapezoids carved out with matte black plastic, like on many of today’s vehicles, not so much.
I would also note that, living in a climate with snow on the ground 8-9 months of the year does not make me fond of white.
Paul notes the dearth of colour options when picking out his Acura. While Honda is one of the worst offenders, other automakers are following suit to save on assembly time and costs. Subjective of course, but choosing white is sometimes choosing the best of the worst.
To me, black, white, and any shade of grey is just the spectrum of grayscale to me. Give me a real colour on the RYB spectrum any day.
The only white car that I have owned that I liked the way it looked was a 79 Dodge Omni 024. It had red striped trim low on the doors and rockers that really dressed it up along with louvers over the huge rear hatch.
My wife had a white 67 four door Ford Custom when we got married and I wasn’t fond of the way that car looked at all. It didn’t have power steering either and that contributed to my lukewarm feeling towards the car.
White is the new silver.
Had my fair share of white cars, but these days I prefer period-specific hues. The Conty and the Calibrick SC seems to work the best. And my Volvo 145.
White is the #1 color both globally (25%) and in the US (21%), and has been for about three years.
Color is such an individual thing. I have a 67 Lincoln convertible that is white with red interior. I think white hides some of the lines on the car, where the New Yorker pictured here wears white well. Color is a big deal to me when it comes to a car. I notice it often. I always thought the Rolls-Royce Silver Shadow could wear a lot more colors well than the average car, but white just causes it to die. White even kills the many lines found on the Silver Cloud. That said I can think of many cars which appeal to me most in white. A color I have never found pleasing on a car is plum. I have no idea why.
White on a large British saloon just screams ‘wedding hire vehicle’.
On a large American wagon it screams “See That My Grave Is Kept Clean”.
Very few cars look good in white. Perhaps it is due to driving so many fleet vehicles in my career (nearly all white) or simply a lack of fondness. It could be either or one stemming from the other.
Yet it does look good on some cars. Ones that come to mind are the late ’80s Mustang GT’s, Lincoln Town Cars, Cadillac Broughams, ’90s model Ford Escorts, and RV’s. Even Acura wagons. Perhaps Perry is on to something with the straight line thought process…
Of the three above, the Chrysler looks best in that shade of sour cream.
Agreed. White car = utiltity co. fleet vehicle.
Unless it has some pearlescent treatment it does’t bend and reflect the light properly along the car’s lines. About the only car I could stomach it on would be a ’75-’76 Eldorado ragtop with a red interior where the sheer chutzpah and size of the vehicle overpowers the blandness of white.
This is exactly what I was going to say. White= fleet vehicles, especially since my personal favorites are pickups and pickup-based SUVs. Plus here in the Land of Eternal Snow, it’s never in your best interest to drive a car that blends in with the entire world, not to mention how hard it is to keep gravel dust from making your car a DIY two-tone. The only time I’d ever consider a white car is if it came with one of those swooshy graphics on the side.
The Popemobile looks good in white. Everything else looks like you were too cheap to buy a color
Seville Jr. 1978-1987 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme Sedan, dang good in white.
Starting with the ’76 Seville, all the “sheer look” GMs looked good in white. A red or gold pinstripe along the fender lines also punched up the package.
I think white helped to emphasize the sharp cut lines of the body, and softened those expansive flat panels.
White also helps hide dusty body panels, conceals minor paint imperfections, and typically buffs out nicely even after extensive neglect.
I agree too- my ’87 Caprice coupe is white with a black (actually dk. blue)top and my ’83 Olds 98 is white on white with a blue interior. I think it looks striking and really complements the clean, angular lines. Just gives the car a really upscale look with the whitewalls and chrome. Just so crisp and clean looking. The car never feels dirty either.
My first car was white (1975 BMW 2002). I rather liked it in white, which contrasted nicely with the navy blue interior. Since I bought the car just before the model year changeover, my only other colour options were bright orange or bottle green (remember, this was 1975). So white it was. It’s the only white car I’ve had, and I’m not sure I would get another in white.
One of the things I vividly remember is that birds were very attracted to my car, and not in a nice way. In a parking lot full of multi-hued alternatives, mine was always used for target practice by our winged friends. Maybe that accounts for my mild aversion to white cars?
Mercedes W111, without a doubt. I don’t know about any other car that looks better in white than this. Though, it isn’t really white, but some sort of off-white light cream-color. That cream looks better than white.
While I think white has looked good on certain cars over the years, like the Lincoln and Chrysler above, and on many old Caddies and old German cars, I’ve never really wanted one. Other than a dark blue, pretty much every car I’ve ever had has been some shade of black or gray (although I usually try to get some kind of funky brown or red interior). But now I have a white one, and I’m not crazy about it. It was literally the last 2013 X5 diesel with a 3rd row I could find. At least it has a nice brown/black two tone interior. I only drive it on weekends, as my wife uses it during the week, but every time I look at it, I wish it was black! I think it shows way more dirt than my previous gray one.
Ok, top pic is my ’82 Celebrity, which I thought looked alright for being white-even so, I always called it the “Maytag”. I got it off my sister-in-law’s granddad for a sweetheart deal and it helped me through college. Including this, my ’81 Cutty Brougham and my ’81 Mercury Zephyr, I’ve had three white cars.
Now, as far as what I think looks good for a white car, I’ve supplied three examples.
First off, Chrysler 300C in what I believe is called “Vanilla” white, I love that color. I also love Caddy’s pearl white on just about anything, but who’s gonna turn down a CTS-V? I thought about doing my ’90 Cherokee Pioneer in this color before I sold it. Lastly, and speaking of pearl white, I always thought this generation of Nissan Fairlady/300Z looked good in this pearl white.
What doesn’t look good in white? First-gen Scion XBs. They look like a Whirlpool top loader flipped on it’s back. I never got the appeal.
Better pic of the Chrysler 300C color I was talking about, I guess it’s called “Stone White”.
That color was called French Ivory on 1965 Chryslers.
Oh yeah, and first-gen Chrysler T&C minivans.
I’ve owned only one white car – a 63 Beetle. In general I don’t like white cars though they are eminently practical here in the Southwest. But some cars do look wonderful in white and the Lincoln Continental and Chrysler are beautiful examples. Engel’s chrome outlining did the trick, I think. The 60-63 Thunderbirds also look great in white.
I especially liked white on white on white convertibles in the 60’s, just something magical about the combo, especially if they had red carpet. Not that I wanted to own one, just liked seeing them around.
Also, I always like the pearlescent white used on so many of the early big Lexuses sold here in SoCal. It just seemed to work as part of their effort to be noticed as a luxury brand on the make. I know some thought it cheesy, especially when matched up with the gold trim, but for some reason I liked it.
For my own cars, for years I’ve been stuck on variations of silver/pewter/graphite. But we have lots more sunshine than Oregon!
Oh delicious. Tin top or no, that wins in my book.
You saved me the trouble of posting it!
Remember when you didn’t need much torque to go fast?
My #2 tasty bite in white would be the original Cosmo
Orphan, you’re two for two! Beautiful cars both,
My dad has long been a white car man, and either my mom goes with white cause he picks or she likes them too.
But every new car they’ve bought (after I was born) has been white, except ,aybe the Yugo, which might have been a dark color.
Some of the used ones, he was able to get white too like the Cabrio and Beetle convertible that was like bone white.
I think his argument is always the care needed is less, though he still cares for the paint. Black paints all too often fade or look dirty quickly and colors are a challenge to match if scratched.
Some of the ones they’ve gotten white from new where a ’90 Impulse, ’94 Expo, ’98 Sienna, ’99 Nativa (Montero Sport), ’01 Z24, ’04 Sequoia, ’06 Solara convertible, ’06 Sienna, ’07 Rio, ’09 ML350, ’12 Pilot
I’m sure I’m forgetting some but that’s quite a few white cars in about 20 years haha.
My dad actually got a new white car over the weekend, after selling his ’98 Boxster (I’m still sad about it) that was silver with full red interior. Man that combo was nice.
He picked up a ’13 370Z with a burgundy top and seats. Different rims and not as pearly paint as in the picture but it shows the color combination which I think is nice.
Actually, I think it’s the same pearl white as his. Seems they only have one kind of white on that car. Lighting sure makes a difference since it looked different in other pictures.
That Nissan is sharp and makes me reconsider my straight and lean theory.
Haha, glad there’s at least one car that does.
Though I like “real-wood” woodies in rich colors (green, burgundy, etc.), I somehow have a soft spot for “Di-Noc” later woodies in white–is that the hue regularly seen in 1960s ad copy, or is memory hazy?
The creamy, pastel white that Ford used all thru the 1960’s and 1970’s, “Wimbledon White”, is a personal favorite of mine. SO much more classy that the “refrigerator white” that Mopar & GM used!
I’ve resprayed a couple of project cars with this delicate hue.
Yes, mark reimer, fond memories of “Wimbledon White” on those 1960s Fords. I faintly recall a “Ford Wagons” ad of the era where they show the whole range–Falcon, Fairlane, Galaxie, all in WimWhite in Country Squire trim, but I couldn’t find it online. I need a BIG stack of LIFE magazines to leaf through, I guess…
I remember that ad. The ’64 Country Squire is still one of my favorite wagons.
a 71 Road Runner in Sno-White with a black Air Grabber hood and a black strobe stripe. My favorite color on my second all-time favorite car (behind a 69 Charger, which also looks good in white)
Lots of classic musclecars look great in white especially with black stripes and graphics.
Man, that does look beautiful.
Reminds me of how good the 1971 Checelle SS with black double stripes and cowl induction looks. Have one on 1:18 in that color combo and it looks really good.
Same goes for the El Camino in the same flavor.
The last of the true Z28 Camaro’s, the 74, had a new tri-bar black stripe on the hood and trunk ending in very large Z28 graphics. Due to an error in the printing of the stripe, all of them came with a white background, underneath the black tri-bar. The intent was to have a clear background, to better integrate the black stripe with the body color. So, any white 1974 Z28 Camaro with this stripe will be as the factory intended. IMO, it is a color that looks the best when coupled with the tri-bar stripe and the factory argent cast steel rims.
Any Mako-Shark era Corvette looks great in the classic white, too.
LT Dan, I’ve never seen a Roadrunner of this vintage in white. I love it just as I love that body style, one of my favorites!
I think the current Regal GS looks quite nice in white.
I think really big cars look good in white. Imperials from the 70s and big Cadillac cars especially convertibles. Boss Hoggs Cadillac looks good white. It don’t look good on small cars and pickups and most aero cars. Best looking white cars I can think of us the 70s big Chryslers and Cadillac convertibles. The town cars look good white. Worst is any pick up and compact cars.
Challenger. Original or current version. Go Kowalski Go!
Agreed. I also think Challengers look great in white but, especially on the new ones, they need a black stripe to break it up.
+1!!!! That’s what Im talkin’ bout! Super super SOOOUUULLLL!!!
And the black shaker hood or a wing or some other splash of black is what it takes to make the car look aggressive vs plain.
Having had three white cars over the years (70 Cougar, 97 Civic, 02 Escort), I’m not that crazy about the color. The Cougar had a black interior with black and white houndstooth upholstry and a black vinyl top, so it didn’t look quite as generic as the Civic and Escort with their grey for everyone interiors.
I always worried about the snow plow jocky at the condo smacking my white car because he couldn’t see it. On the plus side, the roads around Detroit are drowned in salt in the winters, and it doesn’t show on a white car. Seeing my spanky new black Jetta encrusted with salt and grime distressed me enough to actually think about getting another beater…went to look at an 07 Rabbit over the weekend…tires half shot, oil leaks…ran away as fast as my feet could take me.
I like darker colors. They just look richer to me. I have had two black cars, two very dark metallic grey, one blue. If a car has a significant amount of brightwork on it, the darker colors show it off to greater advantage than a light color.
Ford always seems to come up with exceptionally rich looking dark reds. The Rabbit I glanced at was at a Ford dealer, and I drooled at several Focuses (Foci?) in a terrific dark red. My Ford Taurus X was painted “Merlot”, with a black interior. That was the only car I have had over the years that I would consistantly stop to look at, and smile, it looked that great.
I have never had a white car really, though I think the 1979-1985 Eldorado looks pretty good in white, especially an trip white Biarritz with red carpet, dash and seatbelts.
It reflects a carmaker’s confidence that they have a very good looking car when they are prepared to show it in white in a new car brochure or ad.
The Eldo looks great. Unfortunately, I think they chose Larry Dallas from Three’s Company as the Eldo owner in this brochure.
Man, that Cadillac is gorgeous. Reminds me of a spaceship in that picture for some reason. Probably the angle and setting.
I wish that kind of artwork made a comeback.
It is some very nice artwork, I remember this ad from an old National Geographic, it always stuck in my head. The dark background really makes the Eldorado pop.
There’s the “Bicentennial” last 200 Eldorados too….
Yeah, the 1976 always looked good in white. Specially with the red interior like that Bicentennial edition.
Cadillac always had gorgeous colors though so I’d have one of those in any color.
The ones I associate the most with white are the early 60s models with the toned down fins. Like a 1964 Eldorado with a nice red interior. Black interior would be nice too.
I think white is overly boring, but it can also be classy if matched well with other decor (pinstripes, brightwork, convertible or hardtop color, etc.). I do like the pearl shimmery white that you see on luxury cars sometimes.
Other than the above, I wouldn’t choose white or silver for that matter. Personally, I like black and I like dark burgundy/purple, darker red, or dark blue.
I’ve owned three white cars (so far), and in high school, we also had a white ’71 Catalina 4-door (400/2bbl). My first white car was an ’82 Cavalier Type 10 hatch that I repainted white (originally charcoal grey). After marriage, our first brand new car was an ’89 Honda Civic DX hatch (great car, but we sold it after about a year when our first son made his presence known). My other white car was Herbie, which of course needed a white VW for the foundation!
I try to avoid diverts to other car sites, but I think these guys are complementary to CC. You might like this
Great link, Don. Thanks!
I thought the white, gray and red striping on the ’84 Fiero Indy Pace car was an attractive combination.
I can only think of one car that looks better in white than in any of the 18 colors that were offered that year: the Incomparable Imperial of 1964. I had the please of owning a Crown exactly like the one in the brochure.
Wife loves…LOVES!!!! white.
To me, some cars wear white better than others…the ’61-’65 Continental and ’64 Imperial among them. Maybe it’s an elegance thing. IDK.
She bought an 2011 Equinox last week…she looked at a white LS but the charcoal LTZ was the one she came home with…so I can’t say color trumps everything with her. And to ME, the current Equinox looks best in a bold color. Like charcoal.
For some reason, seven of my vehicles have been white…along with three in black, two silver, two red and a brown (a pickup — NOT a diesel wagon with a stick). 🙂
Generally, the more curvaceous the vehicle, the more I like it in white: A 944 was probably the favorite of the ones I’ve owned.
I’m not particularly fond of white pickups, vans and non-luxury SUVs, since it’s such a common choice for fleet vehicles.
Flop – There is a concept in paint technology called “flop” which happens when there are metallic additives in the paint. Basically the paint color looks different from different angles or in different lighting conditions. Some cheap whites are completely non metallic and those cars tend to look like refrigerators. Many white cars now get a little metallic or pearl additive which gives the paint a richer look. That is probably why Fords Wimbledon white looked better than the others.
DuPont has a good article on flop here: http://pc.dupont.com/dpc/en/US/html/visitor/b/dr/s/color/CI-WhatIs-Flop.html
On modern cars, white looks best when it has some black to play against. The current Ford Focus (non-ST) with its’ all-around black lower edging comes to mind. Some vintage cars accomplish that with chrome and contrasting (red or blue) interiors better than others, but few look at their best in white.
I’ve always referred to white as “bought it off the lot white” and swore I’d never own a white car. However, last year I picked up a mark 1 GTI in cashmere white, and it doesn’t look half bad.
I have never owned a white car. The closest I have come was a ’63 Lincoln convertible (like the one in the picture) in Springtime Yellow with a black top and interior. My Mom had a white ’65 Corvair Monza with a red interior when I was a kid. That one looked good in white.
A ’65 Corvair Monza looks great in ANY color!
My wife’s last car was black, which I thought had funereal overtones, or lack of any tone. Her new car, which she made the dealer order, is white, which I much prefer seeing in our driveway.
On older paint jobs, particularly lacquer, whites were prone to “chalking”, essentially the paint’s effort to “self-clean”. Easily removed with cleaner or polishing compound. The newer paint chemistries with clear coat don’t seem to exhibit this tendency. In the eight years that I owned my white Honda Odyssey I didn’t encounter this phenomena.
Had my 2012 Impreza, in white, not come with a puke interior, that would have been my choice. As such, I chose the dark metallic gray with black leather. No buyer’s remorse there.
Range Rover P38 HSE.
I was talking to someone who’d just scored a gig as an advertising creative. A RR was his dream car, I was pushing him to this model. He would not consider it in any way unless it was black. Not dark blue, not any colour other than black. Pee Diddly et al. have a lot to answer for.
This car confirms my straight lines with contrasting trim and big glass area theory. It looks good in white because it has obvious, sharp lines and a lot of contrasting surfaces, like big taillights, big windows without interruptions from the pillars, and black trim. A+.
That Range River looks good in white though I like it in the British green with tan interior.
The Discovery always looked really good in white. Would love to have one.
Forgot to attach it.
Ever try to see your reflection in a window? You can see it if the window is dark, but hardly at all if there’s a white shade behind the glass. Darker surfaces give better reflections. A white car often looks less interesting because it doesn’t reflect much of what’s around it. This tends to flatten it out its surfaces. A dark car better reflects its surroundings, which means we can see its curves and details more readily.
Great illustration, the Hyundai looks so much more interesting in red.
I cheated a little, as it’s not the exact same car. But I’m sure the effect would be the same if I had taken the time to find two identical models. 🙂
Sometimes one doesn’t have a choice. Of course it was better to have a white rather than one of those many ugly green or brown colored cars seen back in the early 70′s. When I went looking I ran across the one below. Turns out it is special in it’s own right as a Spring Special that came in either white, red or black, plus shag carpeting, white interior with plaid cloth inserts, black vinyl roof and red strip down the side. A very 70′s interior but that was my time so no complaints from me.
That pic reminded me of my ’69 Dodge Polara 2 Dr. Hardtop.
White with a black vinyl top, black and white interior. How I miss that car!
I thought I had a better picture of my dad’s car but this one from the Internet shows that the black trim all around makes the white look good. The rims don’t really do it justice haha.
I’ll try to write up a post for it.
The Shelby GT350 always looked really good in white with the blue stripe. This one is apparently a survivor they had at the LA Auto Show.
Last but not least, like mentioned before, 911s look good in white. I much prefer the black on the rear fenders of this one. This same model would be my pick, but in Guards Red with the trim all around like this one and the black Fuchs.
This one was outside the Porsche exhibit at last year’s LA Auto Show but I don’t have a picture with a better angle at the moment.
It was right next to it that I learned about Paul Walker’s untimely death. In front of the Porsche exhibit. Weird ehh?
The automotive love of my life is my Summit White 1997 GMC Sierra 1500, 5.7L with the 5-speed stick, regular cab, long bed.
Prior to this I thought white pickups looked like a bathtub on skates. And, despite never being shedded for the first eleven years of it’s life, the paint is still decent on the top surfaces and deeply shiny on the flanks.
I did make several applications of a “Black Magic” product called “Teflon paint protector” in its younger days, so there is I guess, a possibility it lived up it’s billing. I can’t find it any more, does anyone know of anything similar?
IMO – almost any car with sharp/edgy styling and a lot of chrome/stainless trim looks good in white. E.g. – both the Lincoln and the Chrysler are gorgeous in white, and the classic example is, of course, a white mid-1970s Eldorado. Freshly painted, that is – worn out white paint with rust spots here and there tends to look horrible.
Again IMO, white paint usually doesn’t look right on “jelly-mould” cars, especially with painted plastic bumpers and rear-view mirrors, like the Subaru. It looks just “cheap” to me, as if carelessly sprayed with paint without masking.
Maybe that’s just me, but I also don’t like large blacked-out areas or black inserts on white car bodies, like in case of the Range Rover in Max’s post above – though black vinyl top on a white car is usually fine for me.
Great point about the rust. White cars show rust like nothing else. Small rust spots can hide in dark paint, but any rust at all on a white car will grab you by the collar and scream in your face. The flip side is that white cars are very forgiving with substandard bondo or touch up jobs.
I would almost like any other color on my ’63 Dodge 880 than the Chrysler white.
Hmm. Had to give this one some thought. I’d generally prefer some pigment, but sometimes you just crave cheesecake.
Cord 810 sedan
I agree the Cords look good in white, but I’d prefer black or the maroon which was quite popular.
Like most matters in life, there seems to be a robust divergence of opinions on this. No right or wrong answers – all in the eye of the beholder.
Partial to dark colors here, l but I have two friends (both in their ’60’s) who have never owned anything except a white car. That’s probably 25 cars between them. They claim white doesn’t fade, but maybe you just can’t notice it as much. IMHO, white seems to work best when there is some sort of contrasting scheme (moldings, etc.) and interior. White ’60’s Impala coupes with the red interior did loook pretty sharp.
I rather like white, except in pickup trucks which just screams “fleet special”.
So, of course, my current stable is as boring as boring can be: Ranger – white. xB – black. Solstice – dark silver.
When I go shopping this summer for the new car, for the first time in my life color is going to be important. I don’t care what color, just so its a REAL color, not one of the above.
Don’t forget white Jeeps that look like mail trucks.
W221 Mercedes S-Class. Love it in white.
In New Mexico with all of the blowing dust, I prefer “old gold.”
ok! ok! ok! The one white car I had that looked really nice…looked nice because there was enough black to break up the white: black vinyl roof, black pinstriping, black bodyside moulding and black grille. The car that got me through college.
All the prints from this lab have turned pink. I have the original Kodak negatives so maybe get them reprinted some day.
Being a native n.e. Ohioan I’m not all that fond of white… especially this year.
However I have had a few white vehicles. Both my ’74 164E and my ’79 Fairmont wagon were white and were about as attractive as a refrigerator. My curretnt ’78 Fairmont 2 dr is white as well but the side moldings and the Brouhamesque red vinyl top breaks up the monotony.
Funny how all of my personal cars have been dark colors, while my parents gravitated to light colors. I can remember them always saying that white (or light colors) didn’t show dust and dirt. They had a ’59 Ford Galaxie in white with a green interior, a ’71 Lincoln Continental, white with black top and black interior, Dad had a ’64 Dodge Dart, white with black interior, and a ’73 Ford Maverick, white with the LDO copper and beige contrasting roof and interior. They also had two yellow cars, a ’63 Mercury Monterey and a ’77 Cadillac Coupe de Ville. Their one foray into a dark color was a ’65 Continental, all black (and that was simply stunning, in my view), but Mom always hated the way it looked dusty and in need of a wash. I always thought the Galaxie was the best looking in white, although I have never particularly been a white car fan. I love that ’63 Continental in the first photo, though, it looks great in white. I happened to come across “Sex and the Single Girl” on TCM last night, Henry Fonda drives a ’63 Continental convertible, just like the photo, what appears to be white, or a very light beige, with a matching white or very light beige interior. Either way, it is an immediate attention getter, but then, any Lincoln Continental from the 60’s gets my attention.
The White Whale. Those of you who know will recognize this. As your attorney, I advise you to look into it. (And the Red Shark.)
My white 1987 FX16 GT-S looked bad as Hell in white. Had a blue interior. The red accent line around the whole car really stood out, along with the black accents. Bad as hell. A friend had a black twin, but the white put it to shame, imho. It was the best looking FX I ever saw.
Overall, I’m not usually a huge fan of white cars, but there’s something very attractive about the sportier versions of cars from the 1990s that are white. Often this is in tandem with bodyside cladding. Some that come to mind are the Dodge Spirit ES and R/T, first generation Taurus SHO, late ’90s Lumina LTZ, maybe a Dodge Stealth, etc. And few things epitomize the ’90s more to me than a white Pontiac Trans Sport.
And there’s something absolutely perfect about a ’79-’81 Pontiac Firebird in white. And same goes for the 82-92 and 93-02 generations. I can’t explain it…I don’t get excited about white on the Camaro, but is among the best choices on the Firebird in my humble opinion.
I’m way biased but I think MN12 Cougars and Thunderbird SCs look best in white.
Mercedes-Benz W123 T-model (wagon)
My 1970 C10 was white, when I was living in the Southwest, it was a good color for hot summers with no AC. I never was really that happy with that color, looked a little generic. But when it came time to repaint, white it was because the mostly metal cab was white inside and I didn’t want to go through the expense/hassle of repainting the interior. And I didn’t want a non matching color on the outside, that would have looked really bad. I had typical 70’s white spoke wheels, and with nice paint and chrome bumpers and windshield and back glass moldings, but no side trim, it looked pretty nice. I always thought the Rabbit/Cabriolet convert
My 1970 C10 was white, when I was living in the Southwest, it was a good color for hot summers with no AC. I never was really that happy with that color, looked a little generic. But when it came time to repaint, white it was because the mostly metal cab was white inside and I didn’t want to go through the expense/hassle of repainting the interior. And I didn’t want a non matching color on the outside, that would have looked really bad. I had typical 70’s white spoke wheels, and with nice paint and chrome bumpers and windshield and back glass moldings, but no side trim, it looked pretty nice. I liked the look of the all Alpine White special edition Rabbit Convertible/Cabriolet with bumpers and normally black trim all painted white. I do agree boxier, more square, straight lines tend to wear white better then other designs.
Lincoln Mark VIII in White is really a pretty thing.
White trucks also look good in other colors.
I have a ’79 Lincoln Mk V Collectors series in white, the “absence of color” certainly accents the length and the stark linearity of the car, so, like it or not, it’s sure a nice suit of clothes!
It just all depends. On that ragtop Conti, or other big long luxury cars it looks very classy, if that’s what youre going for. The Chrysler 300 is another example of that. Funny how the 300 and the Magnum share many body stampings yet the Mag looks awful in white.
On a modern jellybean econobox or sedan, it ends up looking like an egg. That said, if youre buying a rolling appliance, then it can look like one…and probably should.
On a muscle or sportscar, white can look spot on. But never just solid plain white, it looks unfinished. That ’80s era Carrera with the blackout Fuchs mags that calibrick posted looks ALMOST perfect…the ‘Carrera’ lettering that was common on these is whats missing. A white Mustang, Viper, Camaro etc with blue rallye stripes looks spot on. Red or black stripes would be ok too. If its a more ‘classy’ muscle car such as a ’67 Cougar than a tasteful black vinyl roof is nice. The nice thing about white on flashy sports/muscle cars is that it can be a bit startling on cars that are normally red, yellow, black, etc.
Ive noticed that a lot of 4×4’s look good in white with a LOT of black. LandRover Defenders look good like this, so do Jeep Wranglers. A white body, with tubular bumpers, roof rack, and fat fender flares all in black looks rugged.
There’s one car that I really want in white, for some reason. A 2nd gen Sebring coupe in that alabaster looking ‘stone white’ looks dead on with a set of deep lipped cross lace wheels with charcoal grey centers and polished lips. Dark grey leather inside, delete the wood, tint the windows and black out the head/tail lites and that makes for a classy cruiser!
MoparRocker I agree a black “Carrera” decal would have made that 1988 911 Carrera I posted the perfect car. Here’s one on a white 1975 and it’s pretty close to perfect. SCs and Carreras in original white paint always fetched a premium price, at least when I was pricing them a few years back.
MoparRocker I agree that a black “Carrera” decal would have made that white 1988 Carrera I posted the perfect sporty car. Here’s one on a white 1975 and it’s pretty close to perfect.
SCs and Carreras in original white paint always fetched a premium price, at least when I was pricing them a few years back before they got all crazy expensive. Love that look.
Oh and the only white vehicle I had was my ’95 Wrangler Rio Grande. It had the interior and soft-top in the ‘spice’ color that looks a bit like terra cotta. That’s back when a ‘tan’ interior actually had depth and richness going on. I had a matching bikini top and deck cover for when the top was down, and the combo looked pretty tight. A few years later, they scrapped the spice color for a washed out looking beige that just looked awful with ANYTHING.
Hey, you found a pic of my brother’s New Yorker! Probably not really his, but it even has Ohio plates. He has an identical white town sedan and he dragged it home from Ohio.
I’m not particular towards white, but in addition to my brother’s New Yorker, I have a white Newport convertible, and our mom has a white Roadmaster sedan. I always said we should rent them out for weddings.
The white Lincoln ‘vert at the top of the page looks good too. The wide whitewalls, in addition to not being period correct, may be a bit much though.
Perhaps I’m partial, but the trim relief on a white car is critical. To see one big mass of white is hugely bland. To have some chrome, silver or black accent trim makes a world of difference.
I never really jammed to white (I’m a silver kind of guy) until one early morning I was gassing up our white S70 and noticed the subtle design lines the color brought out. The new car is white as well – once I saw the special appearance package trim, the white was the only option besides brown that I liked, and the brown was sold out.
Excuse the reindeer accessories…it embarrasses my kid.
I like pure, bright white, but not the off-whites, like pearl and the like. Yes, its a fleet color, and most of my trucks and vans were white. That Continental shows just how good it looks on a car with lots of chrome. However, I hate white Camry’s. They seem to be driven by hapless drivers that want to kill me when on two wheels.
I don’t think anyone’s mentioned the 1975-1976 Lincoln Continental Mark IV Lipstick Edition. Now there’s a vision in all white. Not my cup of tea, but it does capture the imagination, one way or another.
And the interior, somehow those red accents were intriguing.
Avanti. Also any 1970s Lotus.
I think white cars should have SOME strong straight lines, but they need artful curves to keep from looking like delivery vehicles. Think ’63 Buick Riviera and Studebaker Avanti!