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Not Only Assholes Drive Mercedes [research study]

Evidence suggests that one can accurately judge a person by seeing what kind of car the person drives, at least in Finland, suggests a new study.

The study is: “Not Only Assholes Drive Mercedes. Besides Disagreeable Men, Also Conscientious People Drive High‐Status Cars,” Jan Erik Lönnqvist, Ville‐Juhani Ilmarinen, and Sointu Leikas, International Journal of Psychology, epub 2019. (Thanks to Kristine Danowski for bringing this to our attention.)

The authors, at the University of Helsinki, explain:

the results can be interpreted from the perspective of self‐congruity theory, according to which consumers purchase brands that best reflect their actual or ideal personalities. An important implication is that the association between driving a high‐status car and unethical driving behaviour may not, as is commonly argued, be due to the corruptive effects of wealth. Rather, certain personality traits, such as low agreeableness, may be associated with both unethical driving behaviour and with driving a high‐status car.

BONUS: Here are some advertisements for Mercedes cars:

 

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