Striking exteriors for the holiday season

When it comes to cool factory car paints, there are plenty to choose from nowadays and even more if we look in the past. But what if we restrict it to just one color? After all, it’s Christmas and almost everything about this season is red, including Santa’s coat and sleigh. The answer is that there are quite a few cool red hues to choose from. Better said, Santa has plenty of choices for his garage.

While black, white, and silver make up the holy trinity of popular car colors in 2018, red remains in the top 10. It might not be as popular as it used to be a few decades ago, but the fact that automakers keep rolling out exciting shades of red is proof that people are still buying. Let’s have a look at Santa’s favorite red factory paints ever offered.

Ford’s Poppy Red

Santa's Favorite Red Factory Car Paints
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Poppy Red is one of those iconic colors that made a big impact at its first appearance and now reminds of a specific car. The car in question is the first-generation Ford Mustang, which was launched in this color at the 1964 Worlds Fair. Featuring a hint of orange, Poppy Red remained popular throughout the 1960s on both standard Mustangs and Shelby models. It was also offered as Calypso Coral by Mercury.

Porsche’s Kiln Red Metallic

Santa's Favorite Red Factory Car Paints
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Also a classic, Kiln Red Metallic adorned the Porsche 911 and 928 produced in 1983 and 1984. Combining shades of burnt orange and light brown, it stands out among most red colors, which aren’t particularly exciting. This shade of red also reminds me of Mopar’s high-impact cars from the golden muscle car era.

Ferrari’s Rosso Corsa

2014 Ferrari LaFerrari Exterior AutoShow
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Rosso Corsa needs no introduction.

This color adorned just about every Ferrari model from the 1960s and continues to be offered today.

An interesting fact is that Fiat actually used it for the first time with this name in 1967. Ferrari adopted the Rosso Corsa name only in 1981 and used it until 1996. However, Ferraris from the 1960s and 1970s were painted in a similar shade of red, despite not wearing the "Rosso" tag. Starting 1997, Ferrari made the Rosso Corsa slightly darker.

Lamborghini’s Diablo Rosso

1990 - 2001 Lamborghini Diablo High Resolution Exterior
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Lambo had a similar color to Rosso Corsa for many years, offered on iconic models like the Miura, Countach, and Diablo.

But the Italians launched an even cooler metallic shade in 1999. Darker and with a hint of burnt orange, it was called Diablo Rosso and made its debut on the Lamborghini... yes, you guessed it, Diablo.

Chevy’s Rally Red

Santa's Favorite Red Factory Car Paints
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Like any sports car out there, the Corvette features its very own red color. Rally Red is by far the most iconic, and it’s just as recognizable as Rosso Corsa. It was officially offered from 1965 to 1968, but previous Corvettes were available in a similar hue but with a different name.

Ford’s Ruby Red

2013 Ford Fusion High Resolution Exterior
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Moving on to a more modern option, Ford introduced Ruby Red in 2012. As the name suggests, it replicates the color of rubies with a rich red in a metallic finish. It was offered, and it’s still available on popular Ford models, including the Mustang, Fusion, F-150, Edge, and Kuga. This color will make any car stand out in a full parking lot.

Dodge’s Viper Red

2008 Dodge Viper
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dodge viper 2008

If you had posters of the Dodge Viper on your wall as a kid, there’s a big chance that it was red. Called Viper Red, it’s by far the most popular color for this American sports car, and Dodge offered it under the same name from 1992 to 2010.

The company replaced it with Adrenaline red in 2011, but the color itself remained unchanged.

Nissan’s Midnight Garnet

2016 Nissan Murano Hybrid Exterior
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Midnight Garnet might not sound like a red color, but it’s somewhat similar to Ford’s Ruby Red. Darker than the usual red at first glance, it has the cool ability to shift between bright red, purple, and near black depending on angle and lighting. It was offered on a variety of vehicles, including the Murano, Armanda, Juke, and Maxima. It’s also known as New Dark Red, Dark Red, and Tuscan Sun.

Ford’s Vermillion Red

Santa's Favorite Red Factory Car Paints High Resolution Exterior
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Arguably the oldest color on this list Vermillion Red dates back to 1935. The color became very popular during the golden era of hot rods and returned into the spotlight in the 1950s thanks to the F-100 truck. Discontinued in the late 1960s, it made a comeback recently on the company’s new pickup trucks.

Chevy’s Black Rose Metallic

Introduced in 2017, Black Rose Metallic isn’t a pure red color. Actually, you can see a red tint only when you look straight ahead on a flat surface. Otherwise, it’s metallic purple or similar Mopar’s classic plum crazy. First offered on the Corvette for the 2017 model year, it’s definitely eye-catching when combined with the sports car’s angular styling cues. Buick and Cadillac also had it on offer as Black Cherry and Deep Amethyst, respectively.

Ford’s Fiesta/Fleet Red

Santa's Favorite Red Factory Car Paints
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Yet another classic red from Ford, it was offered on several models, including the Mustang and the Thunderbird, from 1956 until the early 1970s. With the Mustang offered in Poppy Red, Fleet and Fiesta red was a more popular choice for the Thunderbird.

Dodge’s Stryker Red

2013 SRT Viper High Resolution Exterior
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The Dodge Red was gorgeous enough in its classy Viper Red, but things became downright spectacular in 2013, and the American brand added Stryker Red to the palette.

Initially, a bespoke color reserved for the Viper, this bright, deep and metallic red eventually found its way on other vehicles.

You may remember it better on the ludicrous Challenger SRT Hellcat.

Chevy’s Victory Red

2014 - 2015 Chevrolet Camaro SS High Resolution Exterior
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Somewhat of a tribute to the old Hugger Orange, Victory red stands out thanks to its orange accents. Introduced in 1989, it has been offered on a variety of trucks and SUVs, but also on the Impala and the Corvette. It is probably more famous on the Chevy Camaro in combination with the nameplates black "go-fast" stripes. This color was also offered as Fire Red and Blaze Red.

Mopar’s Bright Red

Santa's Favorite Red Factory Car Paints
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An iconic color from the muscle car era, Bright Red arrived on Mopar vehicles in 1966 and survived, under various names, until 1983. The classic Dodge Challenger and Charger are the most known examples that made an impact in this hue, but Bright Red was offered by other Mopar brands too. Depending on automaker and model year, Bright Red was also available as Scorch Red, Flame Red, and Matador Red.

Lambo’s Rosso Granata

2012 Lamborghini Gallardo LP 570-4 Super Trofeo Stradale High Resolution Exterior
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Rosso Granata isn’t as known as other colors on this list. Actually, it’s quite rare, with very little information known about it. It turns out this color was released sometime in 1979, a year confirmed by a few Espada models finished in this color. I also know about the existence of a Miura SVJ in this color, but most likely it was restored in this exotic color. The rosy, almost pink hue makes this metallic color a somewhat strange but unique choice for high-profile vehicles sporting the "Lamborghini" badge.

Any suggestions?

Do you know any other red colors that Santa might like on his car? Let me know in the comments section below.

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