In America, we still love our cars

September 02, 2014, 7:29 PM GMT+0

Most Americans really like or even love their cars, while most car owners think of their car as being either male or female

American car sales are once again booming. In July 2014 Americans bought more than 1.4 million cars, the highest figure since July 2006, over a year before the recession began with 2014 set to be one of the best years for car sales ever. Over the longer term however, the American love affair with motor vehicles may be losing some of its spark, as Americans continue to drive less and less. Since 2004 the amount that Americans drive has fallen by over 10%, while younger Americans increasingly put off getting a driver's license, let alone purchasing a car.

YouGov's latest research shows that despite these trends most Americans are still very attached to their cars. 32% of Americans say that they really like their cars, while fully 23% say that they love their four-wheeled friend. Over-65s (31%) and people whose annual household incomes are between $40,000 and $80,000 (30%) are the most likely to say that they love their cars. 23% of Americans don't own cars, however, with 42% of under-30s and 32% of Democrats saying that they don't own a car. Unsurprisingly, the Northeast is the most car-free, with 32% not having a car compared to only 19% of people in the West.

Asked whether people have reached the point of naming their cars, 19% of car owners say that they have. 39% of Americans, meaning 51% of car owners, have also given their cars a gender. There is a strong correlation between the gender of the owner and the gender of the car. 33% of men say that their car is a man, compared to 13% say their car is a woman. With wome only 10% think that their car is a man, while 45% think that their car is a woman.

Full poll results can be found here.