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Win the Iconic Yellow Car Game with our Unique Calculator

by jonathan graham /

We all remember the classic yellow car game from our childhood. And to this day the temptation to excitedly hit the nearest person whenever we see a bright yellow car on the road is strong! 

For those wanting to relive those fond childhood memories and instil a note of nostalgia on the roads again, we’ve created a Yellow Car Calculator which can work out where you’ll most likely see a yellow car, which could result in you winning the game!

Try out the Yellow Car Calculator out for yourself.

How to use the Yellow Car Calculator

Created for car enthusiasts, potential yellow car buyers, fans of yellow cars and those just looking to play this fun game, we’ve made this tool super simple to use. All you have to do is input your postcode and the calculator will cleverly determine the odds of seeing a yellow car in your area.

Wondering how we did it? Through a freedom of information request, we asked the DVLA for the breakdown of colours of cars registered. Once we received the information we then worked out the likelihood of seeing a yellow car in each postcode. You’re welcome!

While we were scouring the data, we came across some fascinating figures about yellow cars in the UK. The BS16 Bristol postcode district has the most yellow cars with 373 registered, but just because they have the most doesn’t mean you’re likely to see them often. In fact, you’re most likely to see a yellow car in Sawtry, Peterborough which has a 6.02% probability. The place you’re least likely to see yellow cars is Central Leeds which has a very low 0.09% probability.

Where did the Yellow Car Game come from?

The Yellow Car Game actually has a surprising history behind it which Professor J Bulmanovich of the University of South-West Sussex has thoroughly researched. The game can be traced back to the early 1600s, where carters who used to transport harvested rape seed from the Cotswolds across the country to the barges. When the barges arrived in Dublin, full of the yellow crop, the dock workers were known to punch each other on the arm, happy after a successful crossing on the Irish Sea.

The trend of the innocent punch on the arm for success passed back to Bristol and spread across the rest of the UK. While originally, it had no real meaning, it wasn’t long before people started becoming superstitious. Rather than punching each other for a successful trip, they would instead punch each other’s arms when they saw the empty carts as a way of wishing them good luck. Villagers would also punch each other when they saw the carts pass through the town as a way of symbolising thanks.

By the 1700s it was common for the wives of carters to punch their husbands on the arm before they set off on the journey to the docs to wish them safe travels. Of course, children picked up on the yellow cart punch and turned it into a game, although they had no idea what the punch actually symbolised. Eventually, yellow carts, carriages and even yellow-painted narrowboats were all part of the game.

While the game did die down in the 1800s, it picked up speed again when George Stephenson built his famous steam train Rocket and painted it yellow. As soon as people saw this yellow train travelling through, the arm punching began once more.

As cars were invented and rapidly became the most popular form of transport, the game evolved to only include them, which explains why it was renamed the Yellow Car Game. The game is still just as popular today as it was in the 1700s, with Facebook pages dedicated to it, Youtube videos and an unofficial fan club. In 2005 it was even reported that two yellow car enthusiasts were arrested in New York and charged with violent conduct as they played the game a little too hard.

How popular are yellow cars?

According to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, in 2016 yellow was the 10th most popular car colour. With 12,431 registrations of yellow cars, it seems like a lot of people are a fan until you compare it to the most popular car colour in the UK which is white with 552,329 registrations. 

While white and black colour cars are understandably popular, their plain colours making it both easy to maintain and sell later on, yellow cars are actually more valuable and attract up to 18.5% more than other colours. This is because yellow cars greatly divide opinions, people either love them or hate them, there’s no in-between! Plus, not many yellow cars are produced each year, meaning they’re fairly rare and in high demand from a small but significant amount of people which bumps up the price.

Yellow cars colour psychology 

Did you know that our choice of car colour reflects our personalities? Angela Wright, an expert in colour psychology has stated that colour is very important and can indicate your outlook on life. While it’s almost always entirely subconscious, our colour choices should be in tune with our personalities and trust our instincts when it comes to choosing the perfect colour for a car, rather than be ruled out by practicality. 

So, with that being said, owners of yellow cars are typically young or young at heart and have a good sense of humour. If you’ve ever wondered why the hit TV sitcom, The Inbetweeners, chose a yellow Fiat Cinquecento as their car, that would be why! Yellow is the colour of lively, fun people who are usually optimistic and want to be seen but don’t care what others think.

Need to touch up your yellow car paint? We’ve got you covered. No matter what make or model car you have, find your colour code with our handy tool and order your Touch Up Paint Kit.

FREE Hand Sanitiser included with Large Kit
Simply add a 50ml Hand Sanitiser to your basket