This article is part of the GM Authority Mailbag series, where the GM Authority Crew features and replies to your questions, comments, and observations.
This one comes to us from Lynn:
I have issues with GM vehicles exterior colors, they are pathetic! I’m not necessarily pleased with the interior colors either. Generally speaking the exterior color selections are either dismal or sickening. I recommend an immediate revision to the color selections if not then by spring. Its only paint just tell GM to buy it and put it on! Don’t say the colors wouldn’t agree with the available interior colors because the interior colors are so neutral that they improve the sickening exterior colors already on the chart. My attention has been with the available colors for the 2013 Equinox. Too many shades of gray and black and none of them are worth a glance, they are not distinguishable. And you can’t say the one they call green looks green, it is gray with gold metallic in it. Reminds me of differential grease. It looks worse than an army military vehicle.
I know you are going to tell me that white and silver are the most popular colors. Can you still say that after you don’t count all of the white and silver program cars that businesses buy? The most popular Ford Model “T” color was black. What was available then? Oh black. You must understand customers need choices. Some people could care less what color their vehicle is, they have no pride in their vehicle. They just want transportation so they are happy with a neutral color.
I suggest for examples: Two shades of white (one pearl metallic) is the limit. Two blacks (one metallic), a silver and one metallic gray is the limit. The current red color is very good, consider adding a maroon color. The Atlantis Blue is barely worth looking at but it is better than no blue. What happened to the medium blue on the chart a few years ago? Three blues are needed; navy or dark metallic blue (think Daytona blue 1964), medium blue (think midnight blue 1961) and silver blue metallic. One metallic burnt orange would be terrific. One butternut yellow (think 1967 or 68) would be excellent. Two or three shades of green would be advisable, all metallic, light, medium and dark shades. Two colors of brown metallic, one dark and one light much like recent charts show.
If GM doesn’t have anyone on staff that can make good color selections maybe they need to find someone who does. GM should look at their competitors colors for guidance. Ford always has good colors.
Don’t make me mad!!!
I would hate to make Lynn mad. So I’ll try my best not to. Realistically, I completely understand how great it can be to get a vehicle with a color that you’re totally in love with.
Currently, the 2013 Equinox is offered with 11 color choices, including:
- Atlantis Blue Metallic
- Black Granite Metallic ($195 upgrade)
- Steel Green Metallic
- Crystal Red Tintcoat ($325 upgrade)
- Tungsten Metallic
- Champagne Silver Metallic
- Ashen Grey Metallic
- Silver Ice Metallic
- White Diamond Tricoat ($745 upgrade)
- Summit White
Now, Lynns says that the Equinox line has “too many shades of gray and black and none of them are worth a glance” and that “they are not distinguishable.”
Not distinguishable from each other? I’d beg to differ. The blacks are significantly alike (they’re black after all) — but the optional Black Granite Metallic color is an upgrade for those who — as Lynn says — “take pride in their vehicle”. But perhaps Lynn meant that the colors are indistinguishable from the colors available on other vehicles. In that case, we’d recommend opting for the Metallic or Tricoat paint schemes — since they are exactly what distinguishes a white Chevy (in White Diamond Tricoat) from a sea of non-metallic whites from competing makes.
But forget about the whites, blacks and grays on the ‘Nox; then we are left with the Crystal Red Tintcoat, Atlantis Blue Metallic — which Lynn subjectively doesn’t care for — and the Steel Green Metallic — which Lynn doesn’t care for either, calling it analogous to “differential grease” that “looks worse than an army military vehicle.” From what I understand, though, the Steel Green color never promised to be a “pure green”; it’s green with a steel appearance. But that’s neither here nor there.
“I know you are going to tell me that white and silver are the most popular colors. Can you still say that after you don’t count all of the white and silver program cars that businesses buy?”
Yes. And for the record, fleets tend to buy an assortment of colors when it comes to crossovers. You must be thinking of trucks and panel vans — which are predominantly purchased in white by those customers.
We’d like to thank Lynn for writing in and ask the GM Authority army the following: keeping in mind that colors are a highly subjective topic, we ask you if Lynn’s letter holds any water. If it does, how should The General adjust its color offerings, keeping in mind market demand for each? Sound off in the comments below!