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Kiwis get up to mischief in cars, survey shows

29 September 2005

Kiwis get up to mischief in cars, survey shows

Give a Kiwi a car and expect mischief. That's what Auto Trader and Nielsen//NetRatings Online's latest survey has revealed.

The survey unearthed some curious facts about what New Zealanders really do in their cars: throw up, disregard the road rules, get up to hanky panky, use it as a mobile office, exercise, argue and daydream.

The survey was completed by 499 respondents throughout the country via Auto Trader's online showroom - www.autotrader.co.nz. Data was collected between 15 August and 5 September 2005, using an online survey sampling random visitors.

ACP Media's Trader Group Marketing Manager/Business Development, Tina Clyma, says the results showed just how much New Zealanders lived and loved in their cars.

"If cars could talk, I am sure they would have some very interesting yarns to tell about what Kiwi owners really get up to inside them," says Mrs. Clyma.

"As the survey revealed, people don't just drive to work and drive home again. In fact, there seems to be very little that people don't do in their cars."

Forty-six percent of those surveyed had been partial to a bit of hanky panky in their car, 37 percent had slept overnight in it, 35 percent used it as a mobile office, and 10 percent saved precious minutes by applying make up in their vehicle.

While women were more likely to put their make up on in the car (40%) and file their nails (16%), 3 percent of men also reported doing so.

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Tina Clyma says these figures, while small, show the metrosexual is alive and well in New Zealand.

"Modern men love cars, but they also love to look good. If Ma'a Nonu and David Beckham can do it, why can't the good old kiwi bloke?"

The survey also showed that in addition to liberal activities in cars, New Zealanders were reckless when it came to the rules too.

Seventy-nine percent of respondents had broken the speed limit and 31 percent admitted to running a red light.

Eating on the run was also a common phenomenon. Sixty-seven percent of respondents dined as they dashed, with South Islanders more likely to chow down in their car (69%) than North Islanders (66%).

Another curious finding was how people's attitudes to buying cars mirrored common stereotypes about men and women's approach to relationships.

"Men enjoyed the hunt of finding their perfect set of wheels more than women. They also said they worried about whether the car would turn out to be a lemon. Interestingly, women really struggled with the commitment factor," says Mrs. Clyma.

The differences between South Islanders and North Islanders were also exposed by the online survey.

South Islanders proved more passionate and feisty than their North Island neighbours with 83 percent being more likely to break the speed limit (vs. 78% for North Islanders), argue in their cars (67% vs. 52%), and fool around with their partners (56% vs. 43%).

North Islanders, on the other hand, were much more conservative and serious in cars, being more likely to sit in traffic (88% vs. 81%), move flats (64% vs. 60%), and use their car as a mobile office (36% vs. 30%).


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