Lime or Yellow…

… that is the question where Mario is concerned.

Ever since Mario was first restored 12 years ago his paint colour combination has caused much discussion. In his original guise Mario was blue with a white roof and we couldn’t decide what colour to paint him. His ‘brother Regie’ a 4cv convertible is Bugatti blue and we wanted something different, an outline drawing was coloured in many combinations until we found something that was colourful, interesting and we liked! A trip to the paint mixers with the drawing found two perfect period Fiat colours that matched the design, although they were never originally used for a Multipla. We loved the result – quirky, stands out and suits Mario to a T while still having that pastel 50’s ‘ice cream’ feel.

However women always say he’s green (lime) and blue while men think the colour is yellow! Well it looks as if there is a scientific reason for this. An article in the Daily Mail today talks about research undertaken by the City University of New York which has shown that male and female brains process colours in slightly different ways.

This means that if both sexes look at an orange, it will appear redder to the man than to the woman. Similarly, grass looks yellower to a man and greener to a woman and this would explain the difference in opinion over Mario’s colour.

Researcher Professor Israel Abramov said that differences between the sexes’ colour vision cannot be explained by differences in the structure of the eye. Therefore, the answer must lie in the way the brain, with the male sex hormone testosterone likely affecting how it processes and makes sense of the information taken in by the eye. The professor, who described the sex differences as ‘small but very real’ said: ‘We hypothesise that testosterone plays a major role, somehow leading to different connectivities for males and females.’

Even in photographs of Mario there is a huge difference in the colour depending on the light with some pictures looking much ‘greener’ than others. This makes trying to find a wardrobe to match Mario very difficult – we have been working very hard at this and there should be a new ‘matching’ outfit making an appearance at the Revival next week.

When Mario was photographed for Stephen Bayley’s book CARS the images were all produced in black and white so the form of teh vehicles could be clearly seen but Tif Hunter the photographer subsequently produced a stunning print of Mario in true ice-cream colours, although in this Mario definitely looks yellow!

So Lime or Yellow? let us know what you think…

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