27 February 2014

Posted by Discount Insurance on Thursday, February 27, 2014
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Traditionally ‘whacky’ cars, such as old beetles and mini coopers, may have a significant advantage in beating traffic queues during rush hour as one fifth of drivers are more likely to give way to them, according to an AA-Populus poll of 17,629 motorists.

However ‘car envy’ seems to affect one in five drivers admitting they are actually less likely to give way to an expensive luxury car.

‘Boy racers’

Some drivers seem to actively want to slow down ‘boy racers’ as 5% admit that they would be more likely to drive slowly if the driver behind them was wearing a baseball cap.

Males are twice as likely as females to act in this manner.


Almost half of drivers (47%) say they would leave more space in front if following a car being driven by someone elderly.

Younger drivers and those living in the South-East and South-West are most likely to give more space.


More worrying are the 19% who get impatient when following learner drivers and surprising the group most likely to get impatient are the third of young drivers.

Perhaps breaking the stereotype, women are more likely to get impatient with learns than men.

Other findings

When it comes to the hierarchy of cars the poll also found that:
  • Younger drivers are more likely to tailgate smaller cars.
  • Only 1% avoid parking next to better cars. However, a higher proportion of 24-34 year olds and those in Northern Ireland try to avoid parking next to expensive cars.
  • Just 2% try to keep up with or overtake sports cars. But 15% of 18-24 year olds do try to take on sports cars. 
Road rumours

Edmund King, AA president, said: “There are lots of urban myths about car hierarchies that we wanted to test. The research shows that some drivers are more considerate to others depending on the type of car or type of driver. It seems that a trilby wearing driver in a classic car will be given more slack that one wearing a baseball cap in a sports car or 4x4.”

“Perhaps the most worrying trait is that 19% of drivers and one third of young drivers get impatient when learner drivers. Younger drivers, in particular, should have recent memories of what it is what like driving with L plates. Our AA and BSM driving instructors do raise this issue.”

“Although reassuring that almost half of drivers would not tailgate elderly drivers, it does beg the question as to why tailgate any driver? Driving too close to the car in front is the biggest danger on our motorways no matter what the age of the driver or indeed type of car.”

“Our advice is to forget the age of driver or type of car and remember we are all humans who should be treated with respect rather than rage on the roads.”

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