In the UK every vehicle must annually have its safety, roadworthiness and emissions inspected as part of an MOT test. This happens in many countries across the world, but the UK is unique as this MOT data is available for anyone to view and have access to. The quality and quantity of data means many exciting and previously hidden insights can be found by analysing the data. Whilst developing our AI model that predicts how long a car will last we have uncovered some of these insights. Rather than keep these hidden we plan to share some of these insights in this series of posts.
Today we are going to look at if there is any link between the colour of a car and how long it tends to last. It turns out some colours do tend to last longer. Of course correlation doesn't necessarily mean causation, and any trends could be related to some underlying reason why colour indirectly effects how long a car lasts. To carry out this investigation we used life time data from 1 million uk cars, grouping them by their registered primary colour. We then filtered for the top 7 most popular colours.
The ResultsThe graph below shows the age reached by cars before being taken of the road grouped by their colour. As you can see all of the top 7 most popular colours averaged more than 12 years, with green cars averaging just under 16 years. So why do green cars last longer? The quick answer is we don't know. If you have any ideas please let us know! Our best guess is that green cars are slightly more unique then other colours, so their owners are more likely to take more care of them. But we do not have any hard evidence that this is really the underlying cause. Next we looked at the relationship between how many miles a car does and the cars colour. As you can see white cars do the most miles. We think this is likely due to work vans very often being white. Work vans have very high annual mileage, and are critical to the owners work so more likely to get regular servicing.
Whilst we can't answer why green cars last longer than other colour cars it shows how different certain types of cars can be from the average car. We think this nicely highlights how important it is to be informed about the specific car you are looking at buying. All the data and insights we have collected about cars in the UK is available for free to everyone. Just type in a registration number and instantly get all the related data to that specific car and also get a prediction for how long that car is likely to last.
Next week look at if the timing of your MOT test effects how likely it is to pass.