1956 XK-140 - Birch Gray Paint Revisited

I was just removing the very large and elaborate British rear license plate from my newly imported XK-140FHC to replace it with an authentic 1956 Michigan one, and found to my dismay that the prior owner had replaced the license plate holder (BD9932) or just not had it final painted with the rest of the car in the UK. It apparently did not matter to him since you couldn’t even see it behind the huge British plate. However, it is in a black primer and now sticks out like a sore thumb with the smaller US plate.

Researching the archives, I found the tinting formula for Birch Gray that I hope, if not a perfect match, would at least get me close enough to the rest of the car. The car changed hands to a dealer in the UK and I think tracking down the last paint shop to get the modern paint code used will be very hard to impossible, but the paint seems identical or very close to some other Birch Gray cars I have seen on-line. It does seem, however, that looking at some other car photos there is quite a bit of variation in what people call Birch Gray.

Given that I just need a small quantity, does anyone have a recommendation on what I can do with my tint formula or even have a rattle can suggestion on something close enough given the fact it is a standalone part and I am not blending into a big panel?



Go to an auto paint store (like where the pros go). They should have a scanner and can make up a custom rattle can for you. Buy a rattle can of clear coat to finish off.

Wonderful. I had no idea it was that easy.


Although 1956 Birch Grey might be different from the earlier cellulose based 1946-1952 Birch Grey this is still a good source and reference:

I have been looking for good reference for my originally Birch Grey Mark V Drophead Coupé since 2002. :slight_smile: