The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

4 April 2005

You are what you drive

Politically, anyway, reports John Tierney in The New York Times:

[B]uyers of American cars tend to be Republican — except, for some reason, those who buy Pontiacs, who tend to be Democrats. Foreign-brand compact cars are usually bought by Democrats — but not Mini Coopers, which are bought by almost equal numbers of Democrats and Republicans. And Volvos may not actually represent quite what you think.

In this latter case, think Subaru, says Mickey Kaus:

Subaru is the new Volvo — that is, it is what Volvos used to be: trusty, rugged, inexpensive, unpretentious, performs well, maybe a bit ugly. You don't buy it because you want to show you have money; you buy it because you have college-professor values.

SUVs split where you might think: big rock-crushers go to the GOP, cute utes are bought by Democrats. Then again, Democrats tend to prefer smaller vehicles anyway:

Besides having fewer children, Democrats tend to be younger, less affluent and more likely to live in cities where small cars are easier to park.

None of this does anything to pin me down: I drive a Japanese-branded car from a marque controlled from Detroit that was built by a UAW crew in Michigan.

And if you were wondering about DaimlerChrysler's Smart cars, which presumably would come with their own stereotypes, well, forget them: DCX will not be importing them any time soon.

(Via Jalopnik.)

Posted at 1:46 PM to Driver's Seat


Mini Cooper and Volvo wagon -- registered Republicans... go figure.

Posted by: The Prop at 4:01 PM on 4 April 2005

He got the Japanese make=college prof pegged. I swear, 75% of the cars in the college parking lots are either Subarus or Hayundais.

Posted by: sya at 6:12 PM on 4 April 2005

I drive a Subaru and am neither a lesbian nor a college professor. Neither is my husband, who also drives a Subaru.

They're practical, especially that all-wheel drive/limited slip differential thing, reliable and reasonably priced. I have to have something that will get me where I need to go. Every day. No matter what the weather's like. As long as a vehicle can do that at a reasonable price, I don't care who makes it. I can't afford to care.

Posted by: rita at 7:56 AM on 5 April 2005