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As most automotive paints are acrylic based then you should be able to get almost any colour you desire which won't melt the plastic body.
Always use a primer! I tend towards a grey primer as it seems to be more neutral than the old red oxide colour. I'm not sure if you can get white primer too. Obviously, for the lighter colours you need a white undercoat, or else you would waste far too much paint trying to cover the grey.
You can go for the cheap and dirty, but still quite acceptable IMHO method of not using fine wet & dry sandpaper in between coats to flat the paint. It's up to you how much time you wish to lavish on your project.

I have had some good results just using spray cans, so you may want to stick with those for a bit longer before moving up to an airbrush (mixing paint/thinners ratios etc. and cleaning it out afterwards).

Hope this helps,
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