Cooley here with another one of your emails about high-tech cars and modern driving.
This one comes in from Kyle in Gilbert, Arizona, who says, I drive an 08 Chevy Cobalt Sport.
There it is right there.
My Dad, he says, always tells me that my car is painted Arrest Me Red.
Not sure that was the actual Chevy shade, but that is the color of your car.
And he says, just because of the color, I'm more likely to be pulled over.
Is this really true?
I've also heard that it's harder to see brake lights, red tail lights, against the car painted red.
This is a chance and it's been around forever, Kyle.
The short answer is, yeah, your old man's basically right.
Red cars do seem to get ticketed more often.
And notice interestingly gray comes in number three for tickets.
drab, old boring gray like just about every car made today, that's a whole another story.
But let's dig in to red and find out what's going on here and makes it such a ticket magnet apparently.
First of all, red has a different effect on brain than other colors.
It is documented by psychologists and psychiatrists and people who study color like the Pantone company.
That red elicits more of an emotional response than other colors.
It can increase your energy, your excitement level.
It's even been documented to raise blood pressure.
So imagine having that effect on some poor bored policeman who's on speed patrol sitting on the side of the road.
Your red car stands out like, wow!
The day just got interesting.
And he's off and he's after you if you're speeding.
So there is something going on there.
Then there's also red and the visual background.
Red is a color that stands out in a world of brown and green trees, grey silvery asphalt, and grey bland cement overpasses.
Look at that background and a red car goes bang and pops out at you.
Now if the world was red, red guards wouldn't stand out, grey cars would.
And notice the graphic artist know this.
This is why the CNET red ball logo is a red ball, this is why the Amazon logo with its boring black type has a bright orange smile under it.
And it also why the golden artistry is yellow and not grey.
No, if you wanna elicit a focus of the eye, you make it one of these colors.
Then there's this idea of red cars and culture.
Whether it's true or not, which we're talking about right now, we have this sort of understanding that red cars are fast cars, and red cars get more tickets.
Whether it's true or not, suddenly becomes a concept that people all believe.
And it doesn't hurt that one out of every two Ferrari's seem to be red.
And they are sort of iconic as fast cars.
Corvettes, a whole bunch of other cars, that are frequently ordered in these hot red colors.
So we start to all believe it.
And finally, there's this idea of red and you.
Most people I would posit who buy a red car, didn't buy it because it was the last car left on the lot.
They went out seeking a red car, because a car to them is really something they want to put out there.
And maybe they drive it a little more along that style as well.
So these are the four factors that I think back up a lot of what we saw in those earlier stats at the beginning.
Couple last thoughts, if all these factors are true, why don't they also apply to bright yellow cars, a speed yellow Porsche?
A bright orange Audi R8, maybe a lime green car, well they probably would, but those are rare, you hardly ever see them, so those cars never bubble up much.
Your last question was, what about red tail lights on a red car?
I would seem based on the contrast argument that yes they are a little less visible against a transom of a vehicle.
What we really know was that the amber signal lights are way effective but unfortunately a long time ago red became the color for stop.
And from the backs of things.
Thank the railroad industry.
So that's not going to change.
Keep those emails coming.
I'm here to answer your questions about high tech cars and modern driving.
How skateboards are inspiring electric cars
The dirty little secrets of cheap gasoline
Here are the best gifts for the driver on your list
See the top 5 cars for the new teen driver
Why air bags don't always deploy
Flying cars: Five reasons you should tolerate them above your...
Would you buy a car we've flogged?
Top 5 ways to spend your time in a self-driving car
Blinding headlights: See why high-tech headlights seem too bright