SUV drivers see red on Australian roads

Posted by: Cal on 20/05/2013

Category: General

All drivers experience the occasional frustrating moment out on the roads.

Someone might cut you off, blatantly ignore road rules or force you to brake suddenly to avoid a collision - in these cases you may feel every right to be cheesed off.

Then of course there are those moments when you are in a rush to get somewhere but you get stuck behind a slower driver. Do you let your temper flare?

If you drive a sports utility vehicle, there is every chance that you do!

That's not stereotyping, that's science: national insurer AAMI has released its latest report on Australia's most aggressive drivers and those driving SUVs have come out at the top of the list.

AAMI studied driving behaviours in 2011 and found that SUV drivers were most likely to become angry with the actions of another driver and tailgate them.

They were also more likely than any other vehicle's driver to yell, swear or gesture rudely at another driver whom they thought was doing something construed as impolite or dangerous.

Does this sound like something you may have done from time to time?

It is natural to feel indignant when fellow motorists engage in dangerous behaviour and put others at risk.

However AAMI also found that SUV drivers were most likely to identify themselves as being impatient on the road, and to have had an accident within the past five years because of this quality.

Ironically, impatience may lead to just the sort of behaviours that these drivers so detest in others - such as ignoring restricted speed limits in school zones or suburban areas, another thing SUV drivers were more likely to do.

So who is behind the wheel of the typical Australian SUV?

According to AAMI spokesperson Reuben Aitchison, nearly two-thirds of SUV drivers are women aged 25 to 49 years old or men aged 50 and older.

While it's no surprise that younger drivers perhaps cannot afford an SUV yet, it may come as a revelation that teenagers and other less experienced drivers aren't the most aggressive on the road.

"Simply being in a big car doesn't give you any superiority on the road, despite what people think," said Mr Aitchison in a statement.

"Getting aggro on the road won't get you to your destination any faster, and the same rules apply to us all."

This is indeed true, and perhaps we all need to remember to take a deep breath every now and then and exercise a bit more patience on the roads.

Luckily, SUV drivers needn't get frustrated while buying 4WD tyres online - we make it easy!