Hitting the highways for that quintessential American road trip this summer? You may want to book extra time in Utah, pack extra Advil for California and watch out for potholes in New Jersey.
A new analysis by Carinsurance.com crunched eight different motoring metrics, from federal data on traffic fatalities to gas prices, in order to determine which states offered the best (and worst) driving experience.
What they found was surprising:
- Utah and Minnesota (#1 and #2 respectively) are not only beautiful states; they provide a favorable environment for drivers. Utah was among the least expensive states for repairs due to poor road conditions at just $187 per motorist (vs. $601 in New Jersey).
- In California, which came in last among all states, 68 percent of roads are defined as poor or mediocre, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation. Add in expensive gas and the country's worst commuter delays, and drivers may well be distracted from the state's rich natural resources.
Americans drove a record 3.1 trillion miles in 2015, up 3.5% from the year before, according to AAA, in large part due to ultra-cheap gas.
"States with high scores for favorable road conditions, as well as cheap car insurance, gas and repair costs, top the list," said Michelle Megna, managing editor of CarInsurance.com. "They also had fewer traffic fatalities and shorter commuter delays."