Turkmenistan Just Banned Black Cars Because Their Crazy President Prefers White Ones

Illustration for article titled Turkmenistan Just Banned Black Cars Because Their Crazy President Prefers White Ones

If you’ve ever had problems with your neighborhood HOA complaining about your cars, what’s going on right now in Turkmenistan should help put things in perspective for you. As of this month, black cars have been made illegal in the capital city of Ashgabat, and black cars have been impounded. This all seems to be because Turkmenistan’s president, Gurbanguly Berdymukhammedov, is a superstitious loon who really likes white.


Berdymukhammedov also drives a green Bugatti Veyron and rules over one of the most oppressive regimes in the world, even for people who don’t drive black cars.

This would all be hilarious were it not so extravagantly shitty for the people of Ashgabat who are, as you may guess, not exactly swimming in cash. For those unlucky citizens who happen to have a black car, their cars have been towed to municipal lots, all without any prior warning.

Before the car’s owners can get their cars back, they have to agree to have their car repainted, something that the average Turkmen could barely afford anyway, and now, with the increased demand, prices are going up as people see gouging opportunities.

The Diplomat describes the situation:

The person who spoke to Azatlyk [a radio station] mentioned that he was told that repainting his car would cost 7,000 manat ($1,996) and that the price would go up to 11,000 manat ($3,137) if he waited a week. His salary: 1,000 manat ($285).

Clearly, this is ridiculous and punishing to the people of the city who happen to like black cars.

The ban isn’t entirely unprecedented; in 2015, the importation of black cars to Turkmenistan was banned, with the suggestion to people who had to send cars back that they should import white cars instead, since “white brings luck.”


Berdimuhamedov also has a plan to cover the whole city in marble, making his dream of an all-white city.


You know what else is all-white? The color of the padded walls in the cell this fucker needs to be locked up in.

(thanks, Jim!)

Senior Editor, Jalopnik • Running: 1973 VW Beetle, 2006 Scion xB, 1990 Nissan Pao, 1991 Yugo GV Plus, 2020 Changli EV • Not-so-running: 1977 Dodge Tioga RV (also, buy my book!: https://rb.gy/udnqhh)


mkbruin, Atlas VP

Jason, that’s nobody’s business but the Turks....