Do Red Cars Get Pulled Over More Often?

  • By: Sean Cooper

You may have heard a rumor that red cars get pulled over more often than others. It’s easy to believe people could think that way: Red is a bright, noticeable color — the kind of hue you might expect to stand out in a variety of situations. But is it true? Do red cars get pulled over more often than other colors?

Ferrari 458

Whether you have a red car or not, it’s always a good idea to know your rights when dealing with law enforcement. Being knowledgeable about your rights can help keep you from getting into trouble, which is good for everyone. Below, we answer some FAQs about cops and red cars. Read on to learn more!

It’s a myth that the police pull over red vehicles more because they stand out. White cars get pulled over the most, followed by red, gray, and silver, in that order. That police pull over more red vehicles than any other color is a myth! The fact is that white vehicles are pulled over more often! Red is second, grey and silver are in third and fourth place, respectively.

Why Do People Think Red Cars Get Pulled Over More?

There are several reasons people believe this to be true. For starters, many people associate red cars with sports cars, which may be more likely to be driven aggressively than other types of vehicles. People who drive aggressively are more likely to get pulled over because they’re more likely to break the law, and they may be more likely to have a red car.

Additionally, the color red has many affirmative connotations, including “stop” and “warning.” It makes sense that people would make the leap from “red means warning” to “red cars get pulled over more often.”

Beyond that, it’s possible that people simply notice red cars more than other colors. There’s no real way to prove if this is true — it’s just a theory. It’s also possible that people expect red cars to be more likely to be pulled over, so they’re more likely to notice them. Again, there’s no real way to prove any of this, but it’s certainly a possibility.

What are the most common reasons for pulling over a car?

Most traffic stops happen because a driver is going too fast. If a police officer sees you driving at a high rate of speed, or if you are driving recklessly, it’s likely that you’ll be pulled over.

If you’re driving with a busted taillight, or if your car has a broken headlight, you’re also likely to get pulled over. Other common reasons for stopping a car include not using a turn signal, making an improper lane change, crossing a double yellow line while driving, failing to yield to other drivers, and failing to stop at a stop sign.

If you’re driving a car that has a mechanical issue, you may also be pulled over. If you’re driving a car that has an obvious visual defect, such as a broken headlight or a missing taillight, you’re more likely to get pulled over as well.

Are red cars actually more likely to be pulled over?

The short answer is that we don’t know for sure: There have been very few studies on the subject. While there are anecdotal reports of people claiming that their red cars were stopped more often than others, nobody has been able to prove the theory one way or another.

Anecdotal evidence is certainly interesting, but it’s not exactly scientific. It’s also worth understanding that many people report seeing a disproportionate number of red cars during carpool hours when driving slowly is illegal. This could mean that red cars are actually less likely to be pulled over since a majority of them are likely speeding.

2021 Dodge Challenger T/A 392 Widebody

Which color gets pulled over the most?

For years, the urban legend that red cars are pulled over more has persisted. Do you know any friends who drive red cars and receive frequent speeding tickets, or is that just a tall tale? Is there any real-world proof to back up these stories, or are they just imaginary?

The most frequently stopped vehicle color isn’t red; it’s white. Unfortunately, red comes in second. Gray and silver are the last two colors on the list, taking the third and fourth spots, respectively.

There’s a notion that police pull over red cars more often, and this is often attributed to the idea that red is a more eye-catching color and easier to spot than white. It is more likely, however, that this has to do with statistics than with the brightness of the color. For almost 10 years on the trot, white has been the most popular car color. Because of this, the color you see most frequently on the road is also the one that gets pulled over the most.

Are the make and model important?

The make and model of the particular vehicle you are driving is a more significant factor than the colors that stand out and make it more likely for police to stop you. It’s fun to speculate about whether certain colors would make it more or less likely for police to stop you, but that’s not the case.

According to one study, the ticket-magnets Subaru WRX and Scion FR-S (now the Subaru BRZ and Toyota 86) are among the most frequently ticketed cars on the road. The Volkswagen GTI sits in third place, and the less-ticketed vehicles include the Buick Encore crossover SUV.

The least-ticketed vehicles are the Lexus IS 350 and Acura ILX sedans, which occupy spots two and three, respectively, but that will have changed by now as these studies were from a while ago now.

There are other reasons why police may stop you

Finally, it’s important to note that police may stop you for reasons besides your car’s color. For example, if you’re driving in an area with a high rate of car theft, and you happen to have a nice car, you may be pulled over.

You may also be stopped if you match the description of somebody who is wanted by the police. If you’re driving in a high-crime neighborhood, police may assume that you’re engaging in criminal activity.

It’s also worth understanding that some states have laws that allow police to stop you if you don’t use your turn signal. Even if you’re driving a fancy car, you could still be pulled over if you don’t use your signal.

Are any colors that are more likely to be pulled over?

The truth is there aren’t any colors that make cars more likely to be pulled over. If you have a bright-colored car, you may be more likely to be stopped, but it’s not because of the color. Again, it’s important to remember that if you are driving a car of any color recklessly, you are likely to get pulled over.

Driving too fast, failing to yield to other drivers, or driving erratically are likely to get you pulled over, regardless of the color of your car. It turns out that white cars are statistically the most likely to get pulled over. But again, the fact they’re white has nothing to do with why they are getting pulled over.

If you compile a list of every car that gets pulled over during a period of time and you know the color of each car, one color will be most common, another color will be the second-most common, and so on. 

2020 Honda Civic Type R

The Truth About Red Cars And Police Stops

The good news is that most police stops are completely legitimate, and there are no laws that say police must stop you for any particular reason. That said, there are also no laws that make it illegal for police to stop you for any specific reason.

If you’re driving a bright-colored car, you may be more likely to be pulled over, but it’s not because of the color itself. It’s because bright colors like red tend to get more attention than duller colors like black.

If you’re driving a red car, you’re more likely to be pulled over because you’re more visible. It’s important to note that police cannot stop you just because they like the color of your car.

Verdict

Red cars may sometimes get pulled over more often than others, but if that was the case in a certain place at a certain time, it would probably be because red was the most popular color at the time.

It’s not because they’re red; it’s because they’re driving dangerously or for other reasons. If you’re driving safely and your car is in good order, you’re unlikely to get pulled over. It doesn’t matter if you’re driving a red car or a black one; it matters how you’re driving and what you’re driving.

However, if you do find yourself getting pulled over, be polite and respectful to the officer. You don’t have to accept a ticket if you don’t think you deserve it, but try to be calm and respectful.

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