Win or lose 1000s

* The colour of your car matters * could cut 1000s from resale value * Find out the right and wrong colours...

Win or lose 1000s

That shade of purple may have seemed a good idea three years ago, but just look at what it can do to your cars value

Colour is a powerful thing. It can transform a bland bedroom into a beguiling boudoir, or turn a financially sound car choice into an ownership disaster. Yet most people dont really link a cars colour with how fast its value will depreciate and thats a major mistake.

Our research shows that colour choice can affect your cars second-hand value by thousands of pounds. Even the cheapest new cars can be affected: pick the wrong colour on a basic supermini and you could be almost 1000 out of pocket in just three years.

So what is the right colour?
Choose an inoffensive colour such as black for your new Ford Fiesta and itll be worth nearly 1000 more than the same car in green after three years. Buy a new BMW 3 Series in white instead of green and itll be worth 2160 more after the same three-year period.

The colours most resistant to depreciation depend on the make, model, engine and trim of the car theyre attached to. However, according to What Car?s depreciation figures, there are some basic rules to follow. Mainstream versions of run-of-the mill cars, including the Ford Mondeo, Vauxhall Astra and even the Volkswagen Golf, hold on to their value better when paintedsilver, black or grey.

Valuation data manager Gavin Frost said: It might seem a bit boring, but buyers of this type of car new and used are usually pretty conservative with
their colour choice, so its best to steer clear of unusual shades, including white.
Its the same with executive and luxury cars. High-end Audis, BMWs and Mercs are best in black, silver or anything in between.

Tick the white box when ordering a new Mercedes-Benz E220 CDI Blue Efficiency SE and youll be chucking away nearly 1500 in additional depreciation.

Changing colour fashions
Here are how colour fashions have changed for cars between 1999 and 2009.