Every time and every generation has its colours. Hardly any other motor vehicle reflects this maxim so enduringly as the 911. In this respect, it is a clear trendsetter. Like a first-born child, it has fought for its rights – the freedom to wear unconventional paint colours – and then passed them on to its younger sibling models like the 944 and 928, which now enjoy such colours as a matter of course.
Memories of the all-time classic Porsche vehicles are almost exclusively in colour. Slate Grey, Ruby Red, Sky Blue, Light Ivory, Champagne Yellow, Iris Green and Signal Red – in addition to seven standard colours, four special paint finishes were also available when the 911 was introduced, these being Dolphin Grey, Togo Brown, Bali Blue and Black.
The first prototype of the 911, the 901/01 of 1962, was a clean, simple white. By 1966, the colour spectrum already encompassed 30 special colours, including for the first time four metallic paints – Dark Red Metallic, Blue Metallic, Silver Metallic and Dark Green Metallic.
In the 1960s, colours as bold and powerful as Canary Yellow, Blood Orange, Iris Green, the light Pastel Blue and the dark Albert Blue set the beat. More muted tones such as Bahama Yellow, the milk chocolate shade of Sepia Brown and the elegant Light Ivory showed off the delicate side of the original 911.
And the kaleidoscope of Porsche colours continued to grow. Even louder shades such as the particularly frog-like Viper Green brought accents that were impossible to miss, while the quieter Gemini Blue Metallic came with a delicate touch. At the same time, there emerged classic paint jobs such as the charismatic Gulf Blue, derived from the world of racing.
Following the 911’s model change from the F to the G model, the colours on offer became somewhat calmer from 1975. Darker, more sedate tones came increasingly to the forefront, with shrill, candy-style paint finishes finding less and less appreciation. Understatement and a cautious view towards resale value supplanted the extrovert appearance, and the colour spectrum of the 911 now also needed to suit the 4-cylinder 924 and the large Gran Turismo model 928.
The three main protagonists in this story demonstrate this very clearly – a 944 S2 in Maritime Blue is just as eye-catching as the pink-washed Star Ruby 911 Carrera RS 964 and the powerful 928 GTS wrapped in Amaranth Violet.
Did you know that the average car colour requires 100 formulations?