These days, black edition (or “Blackline” or “Midnight Edition”) models are everywhere. A quick look through our archives shows that everyone from Volvo to Volkswagen and Ram to Bentley is darkening their cars. Our question is, however, who wore is best?
The idea behind a black edition tends to be pretty simple: Make car darker. Often, that means a dark coat of paint, black leather, and sometimes it even means blacked out badges. Black has always been a popular color, and let’s be honest, most cars look good when they’re painted in it.
Not all Black Editions, though, include the named paint tone. The idea has become so ubiquitous that automakers are selling black edition cars with grey, or even white paint. That may seem ridiculous, but they do often feature darkened brightwork and wheels.
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And that kind of gets at the heart of what the black edition really is. Making the whole car more somber is part of it, but just as important (if not more) is stripping away the chrome and replacing it with black.
The popularity of the equipment package points to changing tastes that have moved away from the gaudy chrome of days gone by in favor of sophisticated dark trim that can act as a cartoonist’s outline, better defining the limits of the car, and better highlighting its design through contrast.
But that’s not all; the Mercedes Black Series, which arguably started the trend, adds power to the mix. In that case, the glooming of the cars seems to have more to do with indicating that it’s intended for performance, not luxury, as chrome might suggest.
Most manufacturers, though, are happy to just change the looks of their “black edition” vehicles. And although that might not be as exciting, and it’s not the most original design package, it’s hard to deny that most look pretty good.
Which looks the best, though, and which vehicle has the best “Black Edition” trim? Let us know in the comments.