4

Is there any evidence that thieves prefer one color of bike than others?

I'm not asking for opinion but for a citable reference.

  • 1
    This comes from a comment @Criggie made in another question. – RoboKaren Aug 25 '17 at 18:32
  • 1
    Red bikes go faster? White bikes are frequently dirty? I'd wonder if there's a relationship between people who wear a lot of black, would choose to ride a black bike over any other colour, and then perhaps not lock it up as much as someone riding a different colour? <br> Totally subjectve impression based on riders who wear all black+no lights at night+remove reflectors+no mandated helmet (in NZ) and bonus points for riding on the wrong side of the road, on the footpath, or are using a cellphone while riding :-\ – Criggie Aug 26 '17 at 3:11
  • Last time I traveled I told my travel companion that black bikes must be very popular in that town. In the whole (Germany and Denmark) travel I did see more black bikes than all other colours combined. I am pretty sure a high percentage of stolen bikes will be black as well. (I do not claim black bikes are more popular there, it was just the impression I got.) – Willeke Aug 26 '17 at 18:15
  • We might count if there are more requests to identify black bikes here on SE. – gschenk Aug 26 '17 at 21:39
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    @Willeke - Actually, all the bikes you saw were stolen. It's a very dishonest town. – Daniel R Hicks Aug 26 '17 at 21:57
5

Finding statistics is extremely difficult, but one set of data was located from the Chicago Stolen Bike Registry http://chicago.stolenbike.org

Their statistics page (http://chicago.stolenbike.org/report-statistics) is now dead/404-ed but if you go to the WaybackMachine, you can get archived data from September 2012.

And tada!

This one is probably a bit less than scientific, but seemed interesting. 
Also, unlike all of our other stats, it's based on a free-form text entry,
rather than a select-box type field. 
Color   
Black   14.23%
blue    7.60%
Red 5.28%
Silver  5.21%
White   4.87%
Green   2.30%
Grey    1.63%
Yellow  1.26%
Light Blue  1.17%
ORANGE  1.15%
Gray    1.09%
purple  0.91%
Gold    0.83%
Black/Silver    0.80%
Brown   0.74%
dark blue   0.74%

However, to make sense of this data we'd also have to know what proportion of colors are the most popular amongst bike sales because if Black bikes make up 25% of the market but only 14% of thefts, then black bikes would be proportionately less likely to be stolen. So some further research is needed.


Screenshots:

enter image description here enter image description here

| improve this answer | |
  • I can't find any data on the popularity of bicycle colors (especially in Chicago :-) – RoboKaren Aug 27 '17 at 6:41
  • I guess the distribution of colours bought will be largely independent of location, so if anyone can find any data, it's probably not very important that it be for Chicago. – David Richerby Aug 27 '17 at 13:21
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    Anyone with pictures of bike racks in Chicago circa 2012, please share! – rclocher3 Aug 27 '17 at 17:33
  • I don't care enough about this to dig, but there are a lot of bike sales/use stats compiled here: ibike.org/library/statistics.htm – joseph_morris Aug 31 '17 at 18:06
-4

Black Colour Bicycle is Bicycle Thief choice is for One reason:

Thief can just paint it with black coloured Spray and Not get detected

Black colour bicycle is the world's Most favorite colour,Even I want it

Black coloured bicycle (Mostly Plain bicycle) Is very common in US

| improve this answer | |
  • Black bicycles are definitely not rare. Among other things, the most common bicycle ever made comes primarily in black- en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flying_Pigeon – Jamie A Aug 29 '17 at 20:58
  • But if a thief stole a black bicycle.....why would they then want to spray paint it black? – Penguino Aug 29 '17 at 21:48
  • To make it look like painted? Like a bank robber would wear an obvious fake mustache over real one? – ojs Aug 30 '17 at 14:21
  • It will sorta make it less obvious I think – RedBattle3 Sep 5 '17 at 15:13

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