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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Back in the day I bought a Honda Civic. The dealer suggested to stay away from silver because it is harder to see. How does everyone feel about their color choice? I initially picked white with black Tridion.
 

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An Issue of Contrast

Certainly being visible at a distance would seem to be a good thing (I trust in the smart's crash worthiness, but I'd still rather not test it in person).

I think that the key to visibility is the difference in contrast between the color of the car and the color of the background (i.e. the color of pavement, which is typically somewhere between light and dark gray). In which case, highly saturated colors like yellow and red would be best, followed by blue, then white, black and silver. I think that silver, which is essentially metallic gray, would offer poor visibility, at least in normal daytime conditions.

On a non-safety note, black and white are a pain to keep looking clean. But that's just me, because I'm lazy about washing my car. Silver, on the other hand can go for years without needing cleaned. :D
 

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I reserved the metallic blue with silver trim just because I figured that if I'm driving something that people will stare at it might as well be a bright color too. Then my husband (a practical man) said it is a good color that will be seen. I was just thinking "cute".
 

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Since I was out driving around this afternoon, I did a little experimenting. There are plenty of really long, straight roads where I live, so you can measure with some consistency how close an oncoming car needs to be before you can see it.

The result of this very unscientific survey was that bright colors are indeed better. Silver and other pale metallic colors are worse, and white is actually pretty good. However, the overall difference was not as great as I expected. What made a HUGE difference were the cars with daylight running lights. I could see those way sooner (i.e. further away) than any car without them. Incidently, this was during mid afternoon in bright sunshine. I was surprised that using runnig lights made such a difference in these conditions.

My conclusion would be: buy whatever color you like and drive with your lights on.
 

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I’m with the impression that white and yellow will be most noticeable. Red is noticeable in good lighting, but not so in the dark. I couldn’t construct any pleasing color arrangement based on yellow. My preference has been for white-on-black with the red interior (actually, red & black interior), though by the time my number comes up I will likely be looking at ’09 colors.

There was more to the white, black, red thing than visibility. A neighbor is a commercial interior designer and says it is an industry standard to work around three primary colors, usually two somewhat complimentary and one in contrast to both. Even numbers have no life and more than three are confusing. One can see the three theory commonly executed in airliner interiors (and exteriors too). So, white, black and red are my three, and I think the combination has visual snap. Unfortunately, a certain German bozo also thought so a little over 70 years ago, but he’s long gone. BTW, white and black are very complimentary; you hardly ever think about one without thinking of the other.

I would guess that all the N.A. smarts will have daytime running lights because of the Canadian requirement.
 

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I would guess that all the N.A. smarts will have daytime running lights because of the Canadian requirement.
That would be good. However, how does that jive with the "light sensor" that's part of the comfort option package? I think that feature turns on the lights automatically as it gets dark, but that wouldn't make sense if the lights are already on during daylight? :confused:

...it is an industry standard to work around three primary colors...
Interesting insight. And thanks so much for causing me to reconsider my color selection YET AGAIN. :mad:
 

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Back in the day I bought a Honda Civic. The dealer suggested to stay away from silver because it is harder to see. How does everyone feel about their color choice? I initially picked white with black Tridion.
If you want to be seen, yellow can't be beat and is particularly appropriate for smaller vehicles. Even though red may appear bright during the day, it does not show up well at night. White loses its advantage on concrete and in the northern climes.
 
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