There are a lot of things to consider when buying a new car: What kind of fuel economy does it earn? What safety features does it offer? Will I need to call tech support just to set up the radio?
One thing we've never heard folks ask, though, is whether their new ride will be attractive to potential mates. And yet, that's exactly the question posed in a new survey from Insure.com.
Over the course of December 2013, the website polled 2,000 drivers age 18 and older. Respondents were asked to describe the kinds vehicles they found most attractive for potential mates to drive. (FYI, the survey focused on opposite sexes, so gay and lesbian readers, you're out of luck this round.)
WHAT WOMEN PREFER MEN TO DRIVE
Among women, 32 percent said that they found men who drove pickup trucks to be most attractive. Men driving sports cars came in a reasonably close second at 27 percent. SUVs (16 percent), sedans (11 percent), and hybrid/electric vehicles (four percent) rounded out the top five. Unshockingly, women found mail trucks to be the least attractive vehicle for men to drive. (NB: How mail trucks even wound up on the survey, we'll never know.)
In terms of brands, women were more divided, though Ford garnered the most up-votes at 16 percent, followed by Chevrolet and Porsche. And when it came to the color of a prospective mate's ride, women far and away chose black (53 percent) as the sexiest color. Silver took home the silver medal, with 16 percent of the vote.
WHAT MEN PREFER WOMEN TO DRIVE
Men were somewhat more opinionated in their vehicle preferences for women. A very lopsided 39 percent found women in sports cars most attractive, while the #2 vote-getter -- sedans -- earned just 22 percent. SUVs came in third at 20 percent, and at the bottom of the list were minivans, with just four percent of the vote. Curiously, it doesn't seem that mail trucks were included on the men's survey.
Men were also more upscale in their choice of brands than women were. BMW landed in the top spot, earning 16 percent of the vote, followed by Mercedes-Benz (14 percent) and Porsche (ten percent). And on the color front, men showed a distinct preference for red, with 40 percent pegging that as their favorite car color for women. Black (23 percent) and silver (14 percent) followed.
YOU HAVEN'T COME A VERY LONG WAY, BABY
To lend a little weight to the survey's fluffy, questionable premise, Insure.com asked a few experts to respond to the findings. Joe Wiesenfelder from Cars.com said that he understands why the black pickup is so attractive to women: "A woman walks up to a black pickup truck and says to herself, 'Here's a guy who can help me move, bring me large gifts from Crate & Barrel and do repairs around my condo.'" Honestly, there's too much going on in that sentence for us to unpack.
And men aren't the only one sticking with well-trodden tropes. Edmunds.com's Jessica Caldwell has a warning for guys who don't live by tried-and-true masculine stereotypes: "I would think twice about dating a guy driving a VW Beetle, or anything labeled a chick car.... Telling your friends, 'Yeah, my new boyfriend drives a VW Beetle,' that would be very humiliating."
If this kind of information matters to you, you now have some very handy tools to help you choose your next car. If not, well, you've learned something about your fellow man -- and woman.