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Women Driving More Miles than Ever in US

U-M study shows women account for 41 percent of miles.

by on May.12, 2015

Women are having a bigger impact on the auto industry than ever, including Jessica Moreno, a GM program manager, who is working on V2V technology.

The term “soccer mom” came into vogue during the 1996 presidential election, but the symbolic vehicle of choice for them – the minivan – is logging more miles than ever as women are spending more time behind the wheel, according to a recent University of Michigan study.

Women drivers accounted for 40.8% of the miles driven – 1.21 trillion miles – in the U.S. in 2013, according to a study from Michael Sivak with U-M’s Transportation Research Institute. In terms of the sheer numbers, women also are the majority making up 50.5% of all drivers on the road at any given moment: 105.7 million women have a driver’s license, compared with 104.3 million men.

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The study tracked numbers starting in 1963 when women accounted 39.6% of all drivers, but they drove just 23.8% of the miles. The numbers have grown steadily during the five decades that followed. (more…)

Gender Gap Now Favors Women Drivers

For 1st time, more women now hold driver's licenses in U.S.

by on Nov.13, 2012

Want to crack a joke about this woman driver? Danica Patrick made the big jump to the typically good-ol'-boy NASCAR circuit.

As this month’s presidential election clearly demonstrated, there’s a significant demographic shift taking place in America – and you don’t have to check the voter rolls to confirm that. Simply look around you on the highway.

While women drivers may still be a subject that comedians feed upon, the fact is that the joke is now on men.  More woman than men now have driver’s licenses, according to a new study by the University of Michigan’s Transportation Research Institute, or UMTRI.

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The gap is expected to only continue widening, with the study showing that the number of Americans with a driver’s license has been shrinking over the past 15 years, the rate of decline for men among 25 to 29 year olds has been twice as large as for women.

“The changing gender demographics will have major implications on the extent and nature of vehicle demand, energy consumption, and road safety,” forecast Michael Sivak, co-author of the study.


Unintended Acceleration Study Blames Older Women Drivers

Problem also common among those under 20.

by on Apr.13, 2012

Misuse of the brake and gas pedals has been linked to an epidemic of accidents.

When the National Academy of Sciences earlier this year ruled out the likelihood of unknown electronic gremlins causing so-called unintended acceleration problems with Toyota vehicles researchers instead suggested that driver error was largely to blame.

A new study echoes the likelihood that drivers may hit the throttle when intending to reach for the brake – while also say the majority of such accidents involve older women and occur primarily in parking lots.  But the report by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration also points the finger at drivers under 20.

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Particularly striking is the finding that nearly two-thirds of the drivers involved in accidents involving the misuse of the gas pedal are female. In all motor vehicles crashes, nearly two in three drivers are male, NHTSA reports.

“The most consistent finding across data sources was the striking overrepresentation of females in pedal misapplication crashes, relative to their involvement in all types of crashes,” the study’s authors declared in an executive summary.  “Females were the drivers in nearly two-thirds of the pedal misapplication crashes” included in the study.


Survey Names Women-Friendly Dealers

“A genuine concern” and “a nuance of hospitality” mark the best, finds new survey.

by on Feb.13, 2012

Women make up the majority of car buyers and influence most of the rest.

Buying a new car can be an unsettling experience no matter who you are, but it’s traditionally been all the tougher for women – who are often treated like second-class citizens, either more trouble than they’re worth or as easy marks to be easily taken advantage of.

“When I started looking for my last car, the first dealer I went to told me to come back when I could bring my husband with me.  He clearly didn’t think I was smart enough to do it myself,” recalls Alice Hissler, a single PhD scientist at a major Michigan university.

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Hissler is by no means alone, and women are more likely than men to express frustration at the car buying experience.  But that’s beginning to change, driven by automakers, retail trade groups and women themselves who are using word-of-mouth and social media to get the word about which dealers to patronize and which to avoid.


Who’re Better Drivers: Men or Women?

Guess again, says a new study.

by on Oct.11, 2011

Are you going to be the one to tell Danica Patrick to move over and let you drive?

Women drivers have long been a mainstay for comics and comic strips, and most men are likely to say they’re better drivers.  But a new study suggests you guess again.

The data all point to women as the better drivers, with women getting fewer tickets for reckless driving, winding up with fewer address for driving under the influence and – perhaps most notably – winding up dying in accidents about 50% less often.

If there’s anything that men seem to have a lead in it’s understanding how all the high tech gear in the latest cars are operated, according to the MetLife Auto & Home American Safety Pulse Poll.

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“Safety knows no gender,” contends Bill Moore, president of MetLife Auto & Home.  “Whether a man or a woman is behind the wheel, an attentive driver remains the most effective deterrent to auto accidents.”

Then, perhaps the statistics show that women are more attentive.  Men are involved in reckless driving incidents 3.4 times more often than women and cited for DUI 3.1 times more frequently.


Study Shows Men Don’t Like The Way Women Drive

Complaints include a lack of attention to driving, poor lane control.

by on Jul.22, 2010

Are you man enough to tell Danica Patrick to move over and let you drive?

Here’s a shocker: Men don’t like the way the women in their lives drive. In other news, a federal agency announced a study that determined that water is wet and fire is hot.

As many as one in three men are so “frightened” by the driving of their distaff partner they don’t feel safe, finds a study conducted by OnePoll.com, a British-based online market research firm. But a survey official suggests that “women’s driving can’t be as bad as men believe.”

And hard data suggests there may be a significant gap between perception and reality.

The survey was based on the response of 3,000 British men, but while OnePoll doesn’t provide the sort of statistical qualifications that validate the scientific accuracy of the study, it clearly suggests modern males continue to hold the same sort of antagonistic views of women drivers that helped keep ‘50s TV shows like “I Love Lucy” stocked with jokes.


Drive, She Said!

Some findings from the survey:

• 20 percent of men say they can never relax when their significant other is driving;
• The top complaint was that women lack concentration when driving. Men said that women are too distracted by children, scenery or other motorists;
• One in 10 men feels it necessary to ask their wife to pull over so they can drive.