Turns out Greta Thunberg may have been right when it comes to her comment about sports cars and “small dick energy.”
A new study details this broad stereotype is based in reality.
Preprint research from University College London, which has not yet been peer-reviewed, claims to have found a correlation between lusting after supercars and believing that one has less-than-well-endowed genitals.
How did the researchers find this? By tricking men, naturally.
The team led by Professor Daniel C. Richardson of UCL’s Experimental Psychology department recruited 200 men to complete an online test. Participants were shown statements followed by images of products, and they were asked to rate how much they wanted each product.
But this wasn’t exactly straightforward retail psychoanalysis.
Researchers planted statements that intentionally skewed the average penis size, then flashed an image of a flashy sports car.
Some of the men learned (falsely) that the average erect penis is 18 centimeters (7.1 inches), while others were told that it’s 10 centimeters (4 inches), with the truth being somewhere in between. This was to manipulate the participants’ view of their own junk.
If told the average penis is larger than it really is, the thinking goes, men would believe their penis is smaller than it really is, while the opposite would be true for men who were told the average penis is on the smaller side.
And lo, men in the study who were led to believe their penises were relatively smaller were more likely to rate sports cars as highly desirable.
Interestingly, this effect was much greater in men over the age of 30, meaning yep, that old dude howling by you in a Skittles-colored coupe may have self-esteem issues about his wedding vegetables.
The study has yet to be peer-reviewed by other scientists, but as the authors noted, “These results raise intriguing questions for future research.”
But this doesn’t have to be a drag for men who actually have penises slightly or significantly smaller than the average, which to be clear, is about 5.16 inches long and 4.59 inches in girth when erect.
There are even benefits of having a smaller endowment, like not accidentally dipping your appendage in toilet water and avoiding very visible, very awkward boners. If you’re feeling short in the groin, let successful self-professed small penis owners like Johnny Knoxville, Enrique Iglesias, and Howard Stern be your guides.