Robert Hamilton Hallowell, 63,managing partner in Colorback, an automotive dye service with franchises in the United States and Canada, died of cancer Sunday at his home in Silver Spring.

Mr. Hallowell was born in Baltimore and attended the business college of the University of Baltimore. He went to work for Chevrolet Co. in Baltimore in 1936 and was engaged in the automobile business from then until his death.

In 1941, as an employe of Chevrolet,he worked with the Army Ordnance Department on the shipment of mechanized equipment to Europe. Later in World War II, he was a Navy officer and served in the Pacific.

From 1949 to 1963, he was president of S.E. Hallowell & Son, a Ford-Mercury dealership in Denton, Md. From 1963 until 1968, when he moved to the Washington area, he workedfor various automobile dealerships on the Eastern Shore of Maryland.

Mr. Hallowell worked for dealershipsin the Washington area and then, in 1973, founded Colorback. He remained active in the business until his death.

Survivors included his wife, Wilburta, of Silver Spring; three daughters, Malinda Cottone, of Annapolis, and Robin Stewart Cummings and Julie Hamilton Hallowell, both of Palatine, Ill.; two sisters, Jeanette H. Willoughby, of Cambridge, Md., and Shirley A. Parrott, of Salisbury, Md., and two grandsons.

The family suggests that espressions of sympathy be in the form of contributions to the American Cancer Society.