A Pink Tax on Car Ownership? New Study Reveals Women May Pay Up to $7,800 More than Men During the Length of Ownership

Ben Guess
Sep 29, 2021 · 6 min read
Key Insights:
  • On average, women pay $142 per year more than men for car ownership, and can pay between $300 and up to $7,800 during the length of ownership. Factors include vehicle purchase price, repair service prices, and insurance prices.
  • Women pay an average of $117.12 more than men when buying new cars.  
  • Women pay an average of $22.94 more than men for car repairs.
  • Women pay less than men for car insurance overall. However, when looking at insurance pricing along generational and gender lines, we found that Millennial, Gen X, or Boomer women may pay more than their generational male counterparts in 36 states.
The pink tax —an upcharge on some items, like razors and pens, that are marketed towards women—is a well-recorded phenomenon. New data from Jerry found that the pink tax goes beyond personal grooming or office supplies, however. Not only do Millennial, Gen X, and Boomer women pay more on insurance premiums than their generational counterparts in 36 states—they also pay more when buying new cars, and can be quoted more on repairing old ones when they don’t name an expected price on their repair. 

Car Shopping and Repair

Our study utilized external data to find the average car repair price and most popular car in each state. We used studies from Yale and from the National Bureau of Economic Research to calculate the percentage of price markup that women across the country face when buying a new car or seeking a quote on auto repair.
The data shows that women were quoted approximately $22.94 more than men on the same auto repair when they neglected to ask for a price, and were quoted about $117.12 more than men for the same new car. We calculated this by looking at the average repair costs per year for each state, as well as the cost of the most popular make and model for each state in 2021, to get an understanding of how much more a woman might have spent than her male counterpart this year. These are the differences in repair and auto purchase pricing: 

Pink Tax on Car Buying and Repair by State

StateMost popular carCar retail priceCar price + pink taxHow much more do women pay for new cars per state?Average repair cost per yearAverage repair cost per year + pink taxHow much more do women pay per state for repairs?
AlabamaNissan Altima$23,260$23,376$116.30$394.65$418.33$23.68
AlaskaHonda Civic$18,840$18,934$94.20$378.82$401.55$22.73
ArizonaHonda Civic$18,840$18,934$94.20$380.63$403.47$22.84
ArkansasNissan Altima$23,260$23,376$116.30$383.78$406.81$23.03
CaliforniaHonda Civic$18,840$18,934$94.20$403.13$427.32$24.19
ColoradoHonda Accord$23,570$23,688$117.85$396.41$420.19$23.78
ConnecticutHonda Accord$23,570$23,688$117.85$413.91$438.74$24.83
DelawareHonda Accord$23,570$23,688$117.85$386.12$409.29$23.17
FloridaToyota Camry$23,495$23,612$117.47$387.56$410.81$23.25
GeorgiaHonda Accord$23,570$23,688$117.85$402.66$426.82$24.16
HawaiiHonda Accord$23,570$23,688$117.85$370.31$392.53$22.22
IdahoHonda Civic$18,840$18,934$94.20$385.27$408.39$23.12
IllinoisToyota Camry$23,495$23,612$117.47$374.75$397.24$22.49
IndianaChevrolet Impala$27,895$28,034$139.47$361.38$383.06$21.68
IowaChevrolet Impala$27,895$28,034$139.47$363.13$384.92$21.79
KansasToyota Camry$23,495$23,612$117.47$375.22$397.73$22.51
KentuckyToyota Camry$23,495$23,612$117.47$390.02$413.42$23.40
LouisianaToyota Camry$23,495$23,612$117.47$388.57$411.88$23.31
MaineToyota Corolla$18,600$18,693$93.00$354.38$375.64$21.26
MarylandHonda Accord$23,570$23,688$117.85$392.40$415.94$23.54
MassachusettsHonda Civic$18,840$18,934$94.20$381.87$404.78$22.91
MichiganChevrolet Malibu$21,680$21,788$108.40$356.16$377.53$21.37
MinnesotaChevrolet Impala$27,895$28,034$139.47$375.73$398.27$22.54
MississippiNissan Altima$23,260$23,376$116.30$392.33$415.87$23.54
MissouriChevrolet Impala$27,895$28,034$139.47$378.79$401.52$22.73
MontanaFord Explorer$31,990$32,150$159.95$382.97$405.95$22.98
NebraskaChevrolet Impala$27,895$28,034$139.47$369.60$391.78$22.18
NevadaToyota Camry$23,495$23,612$117.47$392.45$416.00$23.55
New HampshireHonda Civic$18,840$18,934$94.20$364.77$386.66$21.89
New JerseyHonda Accord$23,570$23,688$117.85$401.59$425.69$24.10
New MexicoToyota Camry$23,495$23,612$117.47$382.42$405.37$22.95
New YorkHonda Civic$18,840$18,934$94.20$375.66$398.20$22.54
North CarolinaHonda Accord$23,570$23,688$117.85$397.56$421.41$23.85
North DakotaHonda Civic$18,840$18,934$94.20$373.09$395.48$22.39
OhioChevrolet Impala$27,895$28,034$139.47$354.24$375.49$21.25
OklahomaChevrolet Impala$27,895$28,034$139.47$378.66$401.38$22.72
OregonHonda Accord$23,570$23,688$117.85$389.93$413.33$23.40
PennsylvaniaHonda Accord$23,570$23,688$117.85$377.08$399.70$22.62
Rhode IslandToyota Camry$23,495$23,612$117.47$390.12$413.53$23.41
South CarolinaHonda Accord$23,570$23,688$117.85$394.27$417.93$23.66
South DakotaChevrolet Impala$27,895$28,034$139.47$378.63$401.35$22.72
TennesseeNissan Altima$23,260$23,376$116.30$394.18$417.83$23.65
TexasHonda Civic$18,840$18,934$94.20$385.62$408.76$23.14
UtahHonda Accord$23,570$23,688$117.85$399.15$423.10$23.95
VermontSubaru Legacy$22,195$22,306$110.97$359.64$381.22$21.58
VirginiaHonda Accord$23,570$23,688$117.85$397.24$421.07$23.83
WashingtonHonda Civic$18,840$18,934$94.20$389.49$412.86$23.37
West VirginiaFord Focus$17,860$17,949$89.30$372.93$395.31$22.38
WisconsinChevrolet Impala$27,895$28,034$139.47$356.84$378.25$21.41
WyomingFord Explorer$31,990$32,150$159.95$387.83$411.10$23.27

Insurance Pricing

We analyzed our own data to see how insurance pricing compared between men and women, cross-referenced against states and generations. 
The initial results didn’t indicate a huge difference in premiums: men in every generation paid higher average monthly car insurance premiums than women, and women only paid more than men overall in four states: Delaware, Michigan, New Hampshire, and North Dakota. 
However, when we cross-referenced age with gender and state, a pattern began to emerge. For drivers under 24, men were overwhelmingly charged higher rates, with women under 24 only being charged more than their male counterparts in six states. Millennial women, on the other hand, were charged more than Millennial men in 15 states, while Gen X women were charged more than Gen X men in 19 states, and Boomer women were charged more than Boomer men in 14 states. 
Younger men have the highest frequency of car accidents out of any demographic, which tracks with the insurance pricing division along gender lines for Gen Z drivers. However, a 2019 study from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety found that women of any age were involved with far fewer crashes than men of any age. Despite this, in a total of 36 states, Millennial, Gen X, and Boomer women drivers were still charged more than their male counterparts.

Car Insurance Pink Tax by State (does not include data from states where men pay more)

StatesAverage monthly premium for Gen Z menAverage monthly premium for Gen Z womenHow much more do Gen Z women pay?Average monthly premium for Millennial menAverage monthly premium for Millennial womenHow much more do Millennial women pay?Average monthly premium for Gen X menAverage monthly premium for Gen X womenHow much more do Gen X women pay?Average monthly premium for Boomer menAverage monthly premium for Boomer womenHow much more do Boomer women pay?Average state premium for all menAverage state premium for all womenHow much more do women pay?
Alabama------------------------------
Alaska------------------------------
Arizona------$168.03$173.77$5.75$137.59$158.21$20.62$124.93$149.38$24.45------
Arkansas------------------$111.20$122.67$11.47------
California------------------$140.54$180.94$40.40------
Colorado------------------------------
Connecticut------$280.90$292.12$11.21------------------
Delaware$302.10$371.84$69.75------------------$283.33$314.78$31.46
Florida------------$238.29$239.50$1.21------------
Georgia------------------------------
Hawaii------------------------------
Idaho------------------------------
Illinois------------------------------
Indiana------$125.20$146.48$21.28------$95.89$100.40$4.51------
Iowa$216.71$238.81$22.11$130.17$137.40$7.23------------------
Kansas------------------$100.40$143.79$43.39------
Kentucky------------$168.34$184.48$16.14$179.43$246.40$66.97------
Louisiana------------$254.26$269.21$14.95------------
Maine------$130.50$141.00$10.50------------------
Maryland------------$236.40$240.01$3.61------------
Massachusetts------------------------------
Michigan$320.86$374.47$53.60------$257.43$258.05$0.62$123.33$157.64$34.30$270.11$280.29$10.18
Minnesota------------------------------
Mississippi$262.47$262.80$0.33$172.60$181.84$9.23------------------
Missouri------------$141.60$148.28$6.68$165.65$189.95$24.30------
Montana------------$91.87$116.60$24.73$71.00$124.00$53.00------
Nebraska------$141.79$149.71$7.92------$90.50$162.00$71.50------
Nevada------------$197.38$220.08$22.70$125.67$180.85$55.18------
New Hampshire------$148.34$227.07$78.73------------$179.55$187.27$7.72
New Jersey------------------------------
New Mexico------------$126.17$141.21$15.05------------
New York------------$331.89$336.23$4.34------------
North Carolina------------$120.83$126.89$6.06------------
North Dakota------$111.91$169.95$58.04------------$139.16$204.17$65.00
Ohio------------$125.24$133.53$8.29------------
Oklahoma------------------------------
Oregon------------------------------
Pennsylvania$254.53$255.38$0.85------$166.93$170.79$3.85------------
Rhode Island------$307.01$341.40$34.39$200.60$277.27$76.67$126.50$164.56$38.06------
South Carolina------$238.33$241.05$2.72$186.93$191.11$4.17$182.37$191.78$9.41------
South Dakota------$173.07$188.99$15.92------------------
Tennessee------------$140.96$143.27$2.30------------
Texas------$181.32$189.94$8.62------------------
Utah------$144.16$152.96$8.80------------------
Vermont------$93.68$111.60$17.92------------------
Virginia------------------------------
Washington$249.42$269.61$20.19------------------------
West Virginia------------------------------
Wisconsin------------$134.32$146.90$12.59$53.86$56.67$2.81------
Wyoming------------$99.55$147.05$47.50------------
We found that the state with the highest overall pink tax for insurance premiums, car repair, and new car pricing was Wyoming, at $183.22, while West Virginia had the lowest overall pink tax at $111.68. The average pink tax in any state across the U.S., including the differences in men’s and women’s insurance premiums, car repair cost, and new car prices, was $142.34. 
When factoring in the average pink tax on car repair at a yearly rate, the average pink tax on car buying once, and the highest and lowest differences in insurance pricing, we also found that ultimately, a woman might pay between $332.32 and $7,858.72 more than a man on car ownership during an average car ownership period of eight years —hundreds to thousands of dollars more for what could be the same vehicle, the same driving record, and the same yearly repairs and maintenance, setting women at a clear financial disadvantage for car ownership.
Pink Tax by State

Average Pink Tax per State

StateAverage Pink Tax
Alabama$139.98
Alaska$116.93
Arizona$117.04
Arkansas$139.33
California$118.39
Colorado$141.63
Connecticut$142.68
Delaware$172.47
Florida$140.73
Georgia$142.01
Hawaii$140.07
Idaho$117.32
Illinois$139.96
Indiana$161.16
Iowa$161.26
Kansas$139.99
Kentucky$140.88
Louisiana$140.79
Maine$114.26
Maryland$141.39
Massachusetts$117.11
Michigan$139.95
Minnesota$162.02
Mississippi$139.84
Missouri$162.20
Montana$182.93
Nebraska$161.65
Nevada$141.02
New Hampshire$123.81
New Jersey$141.95
New Mexico$140.42
New York$116.74
North Carolina$141.70
North Dakota$181.59
Ohio$160.73
Oklahoma$162.19
Oregon$141.25
Pennsylvania$140.47
Rhode Island$140.88
South Carolina$141.51
South Dakota$162.19
Tennessee$139.95
Texas$117.34
Utah$141.80
Vermont$132.55
Virginia$141.68
Washington$117.57
West Virginia$111.68
Wisconsin$160.89
Wyoming$183.22
There are many factors influencing insurance quotes, car repair costs, or new car prices. Gender may be related to many of these factors, and it’s important to understand how or why car expenses might be heftier than expected when you’re a woman. Women have been disadvantaged by pricing for centuries; it’s unsurprising that it extends to car ownership today. 

Avoiding the Pink Tax

There are a couple of good methods for avoiding any car ownership markups—especially if you’re a woman.
Car repair: The most important thing is to do your research beforehand. The studies we examined showed that when a woman knew the average price point for a repair in her area, the pink tax on the repair all but vanished—so do your research and make sure you know the average cost of a given repair before contacting a mechanic. 
Car buying: Once again, doing your research on the average market price of a car is imperative—but so is being a firm negotiator. Women are often pressured into keeping their concerns to themselves, and it can be difficult to speak up about a price that feels unfair. However, doing so could save you hundreds of dollars on a new car—so do your research and find your voice before going into the dealership.
Car insurance: Insurance pricing can be based on several different factors, including your credit score, your driving record, and your location, as well as your gender. In order to make sure you’re paying the lowest possible rate on your insurance, it’s important to check all these areas to ensure that there’s not another reason for high pricing—there might be something you’ve missed. In addition to this, if you have a good driving record (or are working on cultivating one), have taken a driver training course, or have good grades (if you’re a student), you might be eligible for insurance discounts—so check with your provider to see if you might be eligible for a lowered rate.

Easiest way to compare and buy car insurance

√
No long forms
√
No spam or unwanted phone calls
√
Quotes from top insurance companies
Find insurance savings — it's 100% free