Does Car Color Affect Safety and Insurance?

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There are a lot of myths floating around about car color and what it means for owners. One thing we can say with certainty is that the color of your car does not affect your insurance rates. A 2014 survey from revealed that 46% of drivers believed red cars are more expensive to insure. We can put that idea to rest, as car color is not relevant to insurers.

Insurance companies ask for your vehicle identification number (VIN) when setting up a policy. This number tells insurance companies where the car was manufactured, the trim level, and details surrounding its warranty. VINs do not reveal a car’s color, and insurance companies don’t ask. This means that most of the time insurance providers don’t even know the color of a car when they insure it.

The Insurance Exception
Custom paint jobs can increase insurance rates as they are considered “additional custom parts and equipment” and these custom parts come with a fee. However, this is the only instance where your car’s paint job will have any direct effect on your insurance rates.

What Insurance Does Consider
When it comes down to it, insurance companies want to know two things: How risky is the driver? How risky is the model?

Car models with higher accident rates are going to affect premiums, so make sure to do some research between models before you go to the dealership. Aside from that, the only thing that affects your premium is you. Tickets and accidents on your record are going to affect insurance premiums more than anything else.

Car Color and Safety
To this day, there has been no evidence that proves car color has an impact on safety. There was one important study conducted in 2007 at Monash University in Australia. This study found that white cars have the lowest crash risk, while colors with lower visibility such as green, silver, and black have accidents at a higher rate. This study suggests a correlation between car color and crash risk, but does not prove causation. The scientists involved used this data to conclude that light conditions directly affect crash risk rather than car color.

Although there is no conclusive evidence that car color affects safety on the road, there is evidence to suggest that certain colors attract thieves. Silver cars are stolen with the highest frequency. Green, gold, black, and white round out the top five most stolen vehicle colors. While car color won’t affect your insurance rates, purchasing a blue ride may save you quite a bit of money and heartache by warding off thieves.

What Do Consumers Care?
A survey conducted by asked 1,000 men and women over 25 the reason they chose their car color. The study revealed that many car buyers are not overly concerned with the color of their car. 25% of respondents said that their car’s color is simply due to the fact that the dealer only had one color in stock. Only 6% of respondents cited safety as a reason for their color choice. The most frequent answer, totally 31% of the responses was “it was pretty.”

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