- Escape owners reveal Australians are largely proud to be different and stand out from the crowd, made evident by the bold and expressive colour choices of new vehicles
- The state of the nation is shown in the decisions we make, through the products and items we interact with on a daily basis, but particularly in the colour choices we make when buying a new vehicle
- The role of colours, along with their use, is changing: white is no longer a cheap colour, but can add a sophisticated balance to a vehicle’s shape while reflecting who we are and the colours, textures and blends that surround us everyday
MELBOURNE, August 8, 2017 – According to design experts, our vehicles act as an oversized mood ring by providing insights into how Australians feel about their future. With significant issues facing us every day, a curious barometer into how Australians feel is in the colour of the cars they choose to drive.
While the SUV has become an Australian favourite, overtaking the traditional passenger car in sales for the first time in history in February 2017, Aussies have made medium-sized SUVs the most popular of all SUV segments. This makes the Ford Escape a perfect candidate for tracking the Australian psyche.
“Colour choice doesn’t just reflect your personality, it also acts as a reflection of the circumstances around you,” said Emily Lai, Design Manager, Colour and Materials Design, Ford Asia Pacific, who is based at Broadmeadows, Melbourne.
“If you’re amongst a lot of pressure and stress for example, it will affect your choices and moods,” Lai added.
The mood of Australians beyond the half-way mark of 2017 is buoyant – that is, according to colours chosen by Ford Escape consumers. Yet the hottest seller isn’t what you may expect – Magnetic, a steely, deep grey.
“It’s not really a surprise,” explains Lai, “It’s popular because it’s a fairly neutral but elegant colour, and with the high metallic mica, it’s like fine jewellery, which is why people buy a metallic colour. This is where Australians are enjoying personalisation and are proud of being different. That pride seems to be part of the Australian psyche.”
What’s more, the second-best selling colour is Frozen White – yet white is no longer chosen on a purely pragmatic basis.
“It’s not a cheap white – it’s a clean, pure white,” explains Lai, “You need a white primer, it has layers and depth, and there’s a sophisticated technique to achieving the high-end finish. Australians are buying that colour because that’s what they want – traditionally, a solid white was the lowest cost paint, but now they want to be in the fashion group, they have not just chosen it by default. This particular tone of white is a genuinely premium colour.”
The colours we choose for our vehicle reflect the colours of other objects and experiences that we interact with on a daily basis.
“On all sorts of objects, not just automotive, we used to use bold colours like reds or blues as highlights; now it’s white, shades of grey and black,” said Lai.
“You can see this on all sorts of homewares, where there’s matt and gloss finishes, too; polished concrete, anodized aluminium – it’s what I’d call an evolution of colours,” added Lai.
That doesn’t mean we don’t buy bright colors anymore: Ruby Red is in fact the third-best selling Escape color, and is threatening Frozen White’s Number Two position.
“We don’t usually have a huge take on red on a sedan, for instance, but on an SUV like the Escape, it takes the shape really well and adds a sportiness and athleticism to it,” said Lai.
“What’s more, it’s not a traditional red, but a beautifully rich, metallic hue with the effect that it really accentuates the surface of the Escape and brings out its lines,” added Lai.
Here, the level of sophistication and ‘jewellery’ is again evident and shows how Australians are confident and bold in their choice, showing a positivity that Lai feels is set to continue.
“We’re noticing with the younger generation there is a sign of optimism that comes from a faith in technology, and that will bring in a lot more bright colours,” said Lai.
“There will be bright colours for sportier vehicles, and there will be a trend coming through with accents too, where one or more parts of the car are a different colour,” added Lai.