This bit of research aimed to determine what, if any, variation existed in four major markets in the choice of colours available for the VW Golf.
I looked at the configurators at VW’s websites in Brazil, Australia, the US and Germany. The expectation was that there would be some variation in the number and type of colours. The first part (number) was confirmed by this empirical study but the second expectation (type) was not confirmed. The number of paint colours was counted for a typical variant of the Golf in each market.
The author selected the model with the most available colours and captured graphical data from the website. Then the author placed the data in a single, composite image to allow direct cross comparison. The German market had the greatest colour choice with eleven paints. Brazil came second with ten, North American third with seven and Australia fourth with six. No colours were found in the non-European markets that were not in the German market.
This indicates that the preferences of the European market determine the absolute number and character of the colours and that regional VW distributors select from this. In other other words the non-European markets’ colours were sub-sets of the colours produced in the European market.
The author contends that it might be possible that VW Golf sales are limited to some extent outside the EU by the unavailability of colours that might be preferable to the palette of the EU market which are neutral, cool colours and two reds. Given that there is some variation in colour preference determined by culture, it might be expected that in the US and S America, other colours might also be successfully offered and opted for by local consumers.