“Just the facts, ma’am”, said Joe Friday. Here are the results from a 1,100 respondent AutoPacific national internet survey asking vehicle owners what their political leanings are and who they would prefer for President come November.
The poll is not overwhelmingly scientific. It does not look at preferences based on political affiliation or likelihood to vote. It simply asks who they would prefer for President and does show some very interesting results.
Political Leanings What are the political leanings of car (and truck) owners? About 36% describe themselves as Independent with Ford (33%), Toyota (30%), Honda (24%), Chevrolet (20%) and Subaru (20%) the brands most likely to identify as Independent. About 34% describe themselves as Republican with Ford (27%), Toyota (23%), Chevrolet (19%) the top three. About 25% describe themselves as Democrat with Toyota (30%), Honda (23%) and Subaru (17%) the top three. Libertarians account for about 5% of the sample with Toyota (35%), Ford (31%), Honda (23%), Chevrolet (23%) as their top four brands.
The most “Republican” brands are Lexus (45%), GMC (43%), Infiniti (39%), Jeep (36%), and Audi (36%). The most “Democrat” brands are Tesla (37%), Fiat (35%), and Land Rover (32%)
Trump Wins Overall Among the presidential candidates of any party, Donald Trump is the top preference (24%), followed by Hillary Clinton (18%), Bernie Sanders (17%), Ted Cruz (9%), and Marco Rubio (7%). The remaining candidates are all under 5% with Chris Christie, and Carly Fiorina having pulled out of the race after the New Hampshire primary.
Brand Owners Most Likely to Select… The owners of brands most likely to select Donald Trump are GMC (31%), Mitsubishi (31%), Scion (30%), Ford (25%), Jeep (25%), Buick (25%), and Cadillac (25%). No FIAT owners would prefer Trump. The brands most likely to select Hillary Clinton are Mercedes-Benz (25%), Infiniti (25%), Tesla (25%), BMW (24%), Cadillac (24%). The brands most likely to select Bernie Sanders are Fiat (44%), MINI (41%), Tesla (35%), Volvo (32%), Mazda (28%), Volkswagen (28%), Scion (27%), Subaru (27%), Toyota (25%).
Trump Profile Those vehicle owners who prefer Donald Trump are likely to own domestic mainstream brands. About 57% have a college education and about 36% have a household income over $100,000. Contrary to other surveys Trump does well among the youngest vehicle owners capturing about 33% aged 18-29 years old. The lowest preference for Trump is among vehicle owners in their 30s at 15%. All other age groups prefer Trump in the 22%-28% range.
Clinton Profile Brands with stronger preference for Hillary Clinton tend to be luxury brands. About 76% have a college degree and about 45% have a household income over $100,000. Preference for Clinton by age group is strongest among the 60-69 age group with 22% preferring Clinton – about equal to Trump in that age group. Lowest preference for Clinton is among the youngest with just 9% of the 18-29 year old group preferring her.
Sanders Profile Bernie Sanders attracts both mainstream and luxury brands. The owner profile of these brands suggest a more liberal mindset. About 60% have a college degree and about 35% have a household income over $100,000. Strongest preference for Sanders is among 30-39 year olds (26%), among 18-29 year olds (21%) and among 40-49 year olds (21%). This confirms Sanders preference among younger vehicle owners.
There are many polls being cited during these early weeks of a long, long election cycle. Results are all over the map with Trump generally on top for the Republican nomination followed by Ted Cruz. In the race for the Democratic nomination, Bernie Sanders is putting up a surprisingly strong anti-establishment fight. It will be interesting to refer back to these results in November to see who will be our next President. If the vote were held today among owners of cars and trucks, the winner would be Trump by a narrow margin.