UK Vanity Motoring Habits: How Many Have Modified Their Car?

A recent study published by UK vehicle leasing firm All Car Leasing labelled ‘doin’ it for the ‘gram’ has caused quite a bit of a stir as it takes a look at various vanity factors of UK motorists such as their use of social media, how often they clean the car, whether or not they have a private plate and whether or not they’ve modified their car after purchasing it. This study is one of several motoring studies All Car Leasing have released in 2019 as they continue to push boundaries in motoring journalism.

Modified Their Car

The study begins by taking a look at whether or not motorists have ever posted a picture of their vehicle to social media (the social media platform is not specified. Their findings found that of all age groups that took part, it was millennials (25-34) that are the most likely to post with 50% of that age group admitting they had. Further on to this, it was the humble Ford Fiesta that is most likely to be posted online in terms of volume but it’s Audis that is the most snapped car per person.

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Ronnie Lawson-Jones, Marketing Manager at All Car Leasing had this to say “The headline that millennials are the most vain in terms of posting to social media is a little sensationalist as it’s most likely that millennials are the most common users of the platform and that’s why 50% have posted. Other age groups do share as well but just not at the same rate. However, when backed up with other survey answers a clearer picture is painted.”

The second section looks at the main feature of a vehicle respondents considered before making a purchase – overall, respondents valued reliability above all else but for those over 55 it was fuel economy and for younger drivers it was the price point. However, the millennials once again hinted towards being the most vain generation as they were the only age group to choose the looks of the car as the most important factor before buying a car.

Ronnie added – “When we speak to new leasing customers we always ask them what’s important to them as choosing the right car is a massive decision. For millennials it’s the looks of the car and there’s nothing wrong with that. Driving a car that you love to look at will just end up making them happy drivers. However, it’s fair to say that millennials are also at a stage in their lives where they want to find their identity and make an impression and their choice of car is just another way of doing just that.”

Of the 600 plus respondents that took part in doin’ it for the ‘gram, 20% of them said they had a private/cherished plate. When All Car Leasing drilled down who these 20% were that’s when some very interesting statistics came in to play. As it turns out, private plates are a good indicator on whether a driver is or can be perceived as vain, because 53% of them have modified their car at some point after purchase, 50% clean their car at least once a fortnight and 58% have posted a picture of their vehicle on social media. Pretty telling stuff.

“We don’t want to outright say people are vain or not, but it’s pretty clear to us that drivers who purchase private registration plates are particularly proud of their vehicle and want it to look its best at all times. This question was a little bit of a chicken and egg situation where it’s unclear whether private plates was a starting point or whether they were already into car aesthetics.” Ronnie had to say about the matter.

We’ve covered who the most vain are but what about the least? Well, looking at the statistics they received, All Car Leasing suggest that people over the age of 45 who drive a silver Ford from the south east of England are the least vain. They worked this out by filtering only those who have never posted an image of their vehicle on social media, have never modified their car, did not choose the car based on looks and clean their car infrequently.

Cleaning your car is either a chore or an enjoyable pastime. However, All Car Leasing have broken down the stats to identify the personas who clean the most and the least and they are a little surprising. Males, aged 25-34, from Belfast who drive a black Ford Fiesta are the most hygienic whereas females, aged 35-44 from Cardiff who drive a Silver BMW X5 are the ones who are most likely to let their car get dirty.

The actual study is a pretty monstrous blog post over at the All Car Leasing website, which we have provided a link if you wanted to check it out. But, to make doin’ it for the ‘gram more accessible and easier to consume, they’ve produced a large infographic and recorded a podcast episode on the subject that we recommend to check out!

“Whenever we make a new study we try to display the findings in as many different ways as possible as we know many people just don’t have the time to read a blog post which has over 2,000 words. We hope the infographic and podcast allow the study to accessible, fun and informative!.”

Vanity Motoring Habits IG

Doin' it for the 'gram by All Car Leasing




About the Author

Jacob Wolinsky
Jacob Wolinsky is the founder of ValueWalk.com, a popular value investing and hedge fund focused investment website. Prior to ValueWalk, Jacob was VP of Business Development at SumZero. Prior to SumZero, Jacob worked as an equity analyst first at a micro-cap focused private equity firm, followed by a stint at a smid cap focused research shop. Jacob lives with his wife and three kids in Passaic NJ. - Email: jacob(at)valuewalk.com - Twitter username: JacobWolinsky - Full Disclosure: I do not purchase any equities to avoid even the appearance of a conflict of interest and because at times I may receive grey areas of insider information. I have a few existing holdings from years ago, but I have sold off most of the equities and now only purchase mutual funds and some ETFs. I also own 2.5 grams of Gold