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Younger drivers prioritise comfort over safety

When it comes to their cars, under-35s appear to be prioritising comfort over safety.

That’s according to a survey of more than 1,000 car owners about the items they keep in their vehicles and their knowledge of car maintenance and safety, which revealed a huge disparity between younger and older drivers.

For example, just 20% of under-35s keep their breakdown service’s contact details in their glovebox, compared to 48% of older generations. Furthermore, only 25% keep an ice scraper handy, while 62% of older drivers are prepared for icy conditions on the roads.

And while 48% know how to retune their car radio, only 24% know how to change a wheel and only 38% know what all the warning signs on their dashboard mean. Similarly, it appears that being selfie ready is more important than getting from A to B, with 14% of younger drivers admitting to keeping make up in their vehicle – which is more than keep a sat nav in their car!

Practical knowledge of car ownership was also shown to be lacking for under-35s. Only 38% said they knew that their car needs an MOT every year, and just 31% know how to check the coolant level (compared to 62% for over-35s), despite it being a key part of the UK driving test since 2003.

“It’s important for car owners to keep the right sort of equipment in their car in case of emergency, as well as knowing basic car maintenance and how to fix common problems,” said Jonathan Nolan, the General Manager of UK Carline, which conducted the survey. “It was quite shocking to see how little knowledge people have of basic car maintenance, such as checking oil levels and tyre pressure. Having this knowledge is not only important for keeping cars in top condition and preventing potentially costly bills, but is also vital for safety on the road.

“The research has highlighted that although younger drivers seem overwhelmingly naive, everyone could do with brushing up on their car knowledge and on how to carry out vital safety checks. These are usually quite simple to do, and could make all the difference when it comes to the health and safety of your vehicle.”