A question of colour

I spotted a 997 Carrera the other day. Nothing that unusual about that, I hear you say, but this one was painted bright orange, and very nice it was, too. Blood Orange is Porsche’s name for it. Chatting to the owner, it transpired that a previous keeper had, bravely I’d say, had it resprayed from black.

A couple of years back, when Porsche launched the 997 GT3, it revised the Seventies shades of orange and lime green and, my word, the cars looked great. Since then, a few daring buyers have chosen to order their GT3s in these bright and cheery shades, which make a welcome change from the usual silvers and dark blues.

However, buyers of less sporty 911s are still opting for these safe, muted colours. Why? Because they’re terrified of residual values, so they’re effectively choosing the colour that the next owner wants, not the colour that they want to see when they open their garage door. It’s like painting the rooms of your home magnolia so that it appeals to buyers.

Which is a shame but we are seeing a slight backlash. Although silver cars are still popular, some buyers are looking for something ‘a bit different’. And who can blame them? Not so many years ago, 60 percent of all new cars in the UK were silver. Take a look at the sea of silver in any supermarket car park if you don’t believe me.

Today, dealers are happier to take on brighter coloured non-GT2/3 911s, with Guards Red – which was once impossible to sell – in particular seeing a resurgence of interest. There are even a few 997 Carreras in red and very nice they look too. Speed Yellow is also no longer the no-no it once was, and neither is white.

Even so, there is still a majority interest in more subtle shades, although black seems to be the new silver among buyers of used Porsches. And there’s no doubt that any 911 looks stunning in black – metallic or solid – although it’s a pig to keep clean.

People seem to be getting more particular about interior shades, with the evergreen (er, you know what I mean) black being a popular choice. As ever, we’re told that Savannah doesn’t sell, but there are plenty of 996s so-endowed out there, and someone must have thought it nice enough to tick the appropriate box when the cars were new, so there must be used buyers who like the colour.

Some 996s, however, have mad colour schemes. One car that’s been doing the classified rounds for ages is bright metallic green with matching leather. Something like that is always going to have a limited appeal. If you like oddball colours, though, you can often bag a bargain.

Comments (1)

  • Dan Silipo

    Phil, can’t believe you tantalise us with a description, but no photo!!
    I must say I’d never buy a sports car in a subtle colour. I like black but it would be my last choice and NEVER ever silver or grey.