Primary Colors: Does Political Affiliation Influence Car Color Choices?

CARS.COM — Today, voters in the nation's most-populous state will head to the polls for California's presidential primary. Democrats will decide between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders, and Republicans between Donald Trump and, well ... also-rans. As they cast ballots according to their "red" or "blue" political affiliations, data shows they also may be inadvertently casting their car color vote.

Related: With Car Colors, Men and Women Don't See Eye to Eye

According to's national database, the color people choose in red states and blue states is pretty much a black-and-white issue. Those in Democrat-voting blue states tend to buy black cars while drivers in Republican red states prefer white. Our data crunchers compared the most popular colors for higher-volume non-luxury vehicles in all 50 states against those states' voting records for the 2012 presidential election.



Of the 26 states that went blue the year President Barack Obama was elected to his second term, a decisive 19 (73 percent) tended to opt for black cars on the dealer lot. Meanwhile, the seven liberal-leaning states that preferred white cars tended to be in hotter, sunnier climates like California, Florida and Nevada — where the heat-absorption factor of darker colors is a serious consideration.

Republicans, meanwhile, showed an even stronger fervency for their paint color of choice, white — with a whopping 21 conservative-constituency states out of two dozen favoring the lighter side of the spectrum. That's nearly 88 percent among red states, with only Georgia, Indiana and Kentucky going black.

Among the Lower 48 states, irrespective of political partisanship, black-car states were overwhelmingly clustered in the Northeast and Midwest, with Georgia, Virginia and Washington the only exceptions. Meanwhile, excluding Iowa, Minnesota and Washington, every state west of the Mississippi was (to appropriate a phrase made popular by Texas native and self-styled Lincoln enthusiast Matthew McConaughey) all white, all white, all white.

Will California continue to buck the national trend as a blue state with white cars? We'll have to wait until election results start rolling in to get an idea of how the Golden State will go in terms of paint-job partisanship. In the meantime, we encourage all Americans to get out the vote, and vote the color of your conscience.

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