BASF has revealed its Automotive Colour Trends for 2016-17 which point out that urban and natural-inspird colours creating a parallax.
Predicting the up-and-coming colours of automotive design is a challenge the designers from BASF’s Coatings division tackle every year. The overarching theme for this year’s collection of 65 colors is ‘Parallax’, a concept that objects appear shifted or changed when viewed from different angles. The two competing vantage points that shape today’s modern world are: the fascination of the virtual world and the longing for honest self-expression.
On the global level, the ambiguous relation between the virtual and the physical world becomes visible on the automotive colour palettes: Synthetic, metallic blue, silver and white hues stand for the trend towards digitalisation of the daily life. Chromatic colors and natural hues demonstrate a contradiction – a search for authentic experiences and emotions, especially in urban areas. Innovative pigment effects that enable two or more colours to be combined along with metallic urban shades will enrich the colour portfolio of the cars of tomorrow. Specific local conditions and developments shape the way global trends are adapted regionally.
Changing identities in Europe
The European trend is guided by the question “What comes after the hashtag?” – the search for a way to adapt to the digital world without losing track of real experiences and identities. A major colour direction for the automotive industry is represented by ASMR Blue: an intense metallic blue, which combines a digital look and feel with a materialised metallic effect. Blue in general will gain market share with the help of these possible refreshments.
Progressive trend in North America
The highlighted North American colour, Raingarden, is a soft sophisticated silver that transitions between green and blue, depending on the viewing angle. The subtle blending of colors shows that the lines of how individuals behave in society and how they’re influenced by technology are blurred.
Colour trend in Asia Pacific: emerging self-confidence
Despite economic and other challenges in the region, Asians remain confident in their future success. This optimistic approach is reflected in fresh, playful colours such as blue-green. In addition, Asians are looking for creativity and quality, which can be found in the delicate textures of a metallic sand beige colour, demonstrating the connection between traditional values and typical Asian elegance.
Diversified colours for motorcycles
In the motorcycle market, riders are becoming more diverse in recent years. This creates increasing demands for attractive motorcycle designs with different colour elements that can symbolise one’s unique characteristics. Sophisticated classical motorcycle colours such as garnet-like colours and grayish-blue, as well as well-worn tones such as copper and black iron, are becoming popular. In addition, both warm and cool metallic pastel colours, suggesting creativity and carrying a futuristic image, are fresh to the motorcycle industry. Both young people and women are showing a preference for stylish, unique colours, which demonstrate the personalities of Asia.
BASF says its Automotive Color Trends pulls expertise from studios in Asia Pacific, Europe and North America. Through intensive collaboration, the teams provide automotive customers with global trends and regional differences.
The company’s regional colour design team in Asia Pacific employs designers from diverse backgrounds, offering design consultancy services to customers in the dynamic Asian markets.
“Every year, BASF predicts the colors that will play a role for cars in the future. Our annual colour trend forecast puts a higher focus on the developments of chromatic colours: when compared to achromatic colours such as white, silver, grey and black, chromatic colours change much faster and are strategically more important to our automotive OEM customers to appeal to their end-users,” said Chiharu Matsuhara, Chief Colour Designer at BASF's Coatings division in Asia Pacific. “We are one of the world’s leading automotive coatings suppliers and work very closely with the automotive industry. The regional colour design team in Asia Pacific is dedicated to serving our customers in the region and providing them with up-to-date colour intelligence.”