Volkswagen Is Finally Bringing Back Some Good Colors To America But It's Not Cheap

Color! It’s my dream that, before I die, someone will heft the plastic bag that contains the still operating parts of my body, and hold a remaining eye to a window, where I’ll look out to see traffic flowing by, in a Skittles-like array of many, varied colors. We’re still far from that goal, but at least Volkswagen is trying, by offering 40 colors for the Golf R here in America.

Of course, if you want a real color, VW’s going to make you pay for it, a hefty $2,500 not-afraid-of-real-color tax. Still, I can’t be too mad, because hardly any other manufacturer is offering an array of color this vast.


Previously, I’ve lamented how almost everywhere in the world got a decent color selection for the Golf R, while we in the States had to make do with this pathetic palette:


But, that’s all changed! Because now, thanks to VW’s Spektrum Program, there’s 40 colors available! Here, look for yourself!


That’s eight times more colors than before! This, this is how it should be! Greens and purples and browns and blues and yellows—it’s time we stopped being so afraid of color.


Sure, there’s still a few neutral-ish colors in there, but overall, it’s a good, rich, varied palette.

The colors have a bit of thought behind them, too. According to VW’s press release,

“VWoA’s Product Marketing team worked in tandem with Volkswagen Canada to select a diverse range of colors for the 2019 model year Golf R that will appeal to owners, while still paying homage to the rich heritage of the Volkswagen color spectrum. Viper Green Metallic, originally found on the European Mk 3 Scirocco, and later featured on the Lamborghini Huracán, has been the most popular color to date in Canada. Other colors that will resonate with enthusiasts include Deep Blue Pearl from the Mk 4 and Mk 5 R32, Ginster Yellow from the 1997 Driver’s Edition GTI, and Mars Red from the Mk 1 GTI.”


Of course, it’s worth noting that this Spektrum Program is only available for the Golf R, arguably one of VW’s halo performance cars. That’s pretty much how it goes if you want a real color on a car in America: it’s only going to happen on either the extreme low end of the market or the high end. You can get a yellow Fiat 500 or Lamborghini, and hardly anything in the middle. It’s like carmakers think you have to be either too poor or too rich to care about playing it safe, color-wise.

Still, it’s progress. I hope to see some Golf Rs in real colors punctuating the endless sea of silver and white and black crossovers very soon.

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About the author

Jason Torchinsky

Senior Editor, Jalopnik • Running: 1973 VW Beetle, 2006 Scion xB, 1990 Nissan Pao, 1991 Yugo GV Plus • Not-so-running: 1973 Reliant Scimitar, 1977 Dodge Tioga RV (also, buy my book!)