Does your car have a personality all its own?

A study co-authored by a Florida State University researcher found that many people see human facial features in the front end of cars that dictate the cars’ personalities. When polled by the Associated Press and AOL, almost four in 10 people said that their car has a personality. And what’s more, two in 10 respondents said they have named their cars. What I couldn’t find is whether or not there is a relationship between a car’s personality and owner loyalty. In other words, are we less likely to dump “Sally” than we would her identical, but lifeless counterpart? If so, maybe naming our cars is a good idea—after all, we are spending a lot more time together lately. According to a study recently published by R. L. Polk & Co., we are keeping our cars longer than ever before. In 2008, the median age for passenger cars was a record high of 9.4 years. And it’s no small surprise since according to the National Automobile Dealers Association, the average price of a new car sold in the United States is $28,797.

Kim McGrigg is the former Manager of Community and Media Relations for MMI.