Most popular cars in Arizona, and the USA

When you repair cars for a living, you get to know cars. When you are an auto body repair shop, you get a sense for what cars are popular. Here at O’Reilly collision centers in Tucson Arizona, we fix tons of cars. We know that Honda’s and Chevy’s and Fords are extremely popular. But what about the rest of the country? What are to most popular cars in each state?

It turns out we weren’t the only ones to consider this. The IIHS recently released a map showing the most popular cars by state. As expected, the top five overall vehicles in sales are the Ford F-Series, Chevy Silverado and Ram pickups, followed by the Toyota Camry and Honda Accord. What we were surprised to find is some of the Nations border states, many of which follow old college sports conference boundaries; in Big Ten land, Chevy rules, while Ford has the Big 12 to itself and Toyota dominates the old Southeastern Conference. It’s no surprise that imports rule on the coasts, where Honda and Toyota have claimed a large chuck of the new-car market and fewer buyers opt for pickups. All of California’s top-five selling vehicles were either Honda or Toyota sedans.


What was our biggest surprise? The Subaru Outback and Forester. As it turns out, last year, Subaru sold 138,790 Outbacks, or about 1/3rd of what Honda sold in Accords, but that was enough to be the most popular new model among retail customers in Washington, Colorado and Maine, while the Forester conquered Connecticut. Unlike most automakers, Subaru sells virtually no vehicles to fleet or bulk buyers. The years of conservative factory building have meant there’s generally more demand for Subarus than there is supply, especially in the most popular SUV/wagon models. In several other snowbelt states where a pickup topped this map, the Outback was the most popular car.


And a couple of states reflect the trend toward SUVs; as Tom Libby, manager of industry analysis for IHS Automotive notes, 2014 was the first year “crossover” SUVs like the Honda CR-V — New York’s most favorite new vehicle — surpassed sedans in popularity. Among American vehicles, only models like the Chevy Equinox and Ford Escape made the top-five lists in any given state, while American-branded sedans were all but shut out. “I think the whole car/truck distinction is becoming obsolete,” Libby said. “It’s becoming a very fuzzy line.”


As for the outliers; Floridians love the Toyota Corolla, God bless ’em, and Hawaii and Vermont have iconoclastic tastes for pickups (the Toyota Tacoma and GMC Sierra, respectively.) And while some states seem committed to their choices — like Texans and their love of Ford pickups — other states were much more divided in their preferences. We’ll update this list next year to see who wins, and who suffers a state change.

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