Young singletons Britain’s messiest drivers – survey

Single men and women are Britain’s messiest drivers, while taxi drivers and chauffeurs are the group that keep their vehicles in the best condition. These are the findings of one of the UK’s leading car leasing companies who found the professional drivers are far more likely to care for their cars and vans, while people who consider themselves “time poor” let their foot wells fill ankle deep with rubbish.

Garage mechanics, valets and car washers alike told the who were the cleanest and dirtiest drivers, and helped up compile a top five and list of shame when it came to in-car rubbish.

“It’s clear that some people love their cars,” said Flexed spokesperson Mark Hall, “but for others it’s just a rubbish tip with a wheel on each corner. One mechanic told us he once threatened to fail a car on its MOT because there was so much rubbish he couldn’t get to the spare wheel. The owner was a young chap in a sharp suit, but his car was a mess.”

According to a phone and face-to-face poll with people in the motor and valeting trade (1,250 took part), the least “car proud” drivers on Britain’s roads are:

1.             Single men and women under 30

2.             “White van” drivers

3.             Travelling salesmen

4.             Mums with young family

5.             Commuters says that young, single people were far and away the messiest drivers, with garage workers saying that cars with back seats brimming with fast food wrappers, dirty clothes and muddy shoes are virtually a daily sight.

The type of mess also varies from group to group. Singletons tend to leave sweet and snack wrappers in their cars, while White Van Man will find his vehicle with the leftover debris from a lunch on the move.

“At the risk of analysing an entire social group, it appears that some people’s chaotic, carefree lives lead to a lack of care for their cars,” Hall claimed, “Their foot wells might as well just be litter bins. You can almost understand white van man and salesmen having messy vehicles, as they virtually live on the road, but  for younger people, the argument that they’re ‘time poor’ just doesn’t wash,” lectures Hall. “It’s just laziness.”

On the other hand, the following groups are more likely to turn up for a car servicing or a car wash with their vehicle already sparkling:

1.             Chauffeurs

2.             Taxi drivers

3.             Over 55s

4.             Young married couples

5.             Classic car enthusiasts says professional drivers tend to show a pride in their own cars as well as the ones they use for work.

“It’s a respect for their surroundings, because their livelihood depends on it,” says Hall, “You always remember a messy cab, and you never use them again.”

Reflecting common warning signs in cabs, one taxi driver even had a sign up in the back warning his children they risked losing their pocket money if they left a mess, ‘s Mark Hall says. “Of course, it was spotless.”

For some, the clean car becomes almost a compulsion. “You won’t believe how clean the classic motor enthusiasts keep their cars,” said Hall, citing comments from car valet workers. “They’re the type who restore their motors with genuine parts worth hundreds. The last thing they want is rubbish on the original carpet and newly-restored centre console.”

It’s clear, Flexed says, that younger people really need to up their game with their in-car cleanliness. “Filthy cars lose value,” says Hall, “Laziness is hitting these drivers in the wallet.”


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