Angry Birds behind the wheel

angry_womanA recent study of 1,000 UK drivers reveals women are, on average, 12% angrier than men when they’re behind the wheel.

So claims Hyundai and behavioural psychologist Patrick Fagan after cutting-edge technology to create the world’s first Driving Emotion Test (DET).

This involves facial coding technology, eye tracking analysis, galvanic skin response and a heart rate monitor to record how specific stimuli impact our emotions when we’re driving.

The results are then fed into specially-created software to provide subjects with a unique DET score.

If you want to have a go you can via an online DET and secure tickets to House of Hyundai– a three-day sensory experience on the 4th and 5th November 2016 at Unit London in Soho.

Quite remarkable…

Angry female driver reactions

Apparently women were the most angry when undertaken, shouted at, beeped at, had to deal with a back-seat driver (women 14% angrier) or faced with a road user who failed to indicate (women 13% angrier).

In all test scenarios, women were more likely to respond with anger than male drivers.

The study suggests two dominant emotions of happiness, as in a sense of freedom when driving and anger when drivers feel out of control.

Other Driving Emotion findings

Research findings include…

1/ The primary reasons for our continued love affair with driving are the freedom it gives us (51%), mobility (19%) and independence (10%)

2/ If you want a man to open up, take him for a drive. Just under a third (29%) of men said they find it easier to have a conversation in the car. Fourteen percent added that a chat actually makes them a better driver

3/ 54% of Brits said the thing that made them really happy in the car was singing – which may explain why Carpool Karaoke has resonated with many people

4/ When the researchers looked at what makes us happy behind the wheel, 84% of people said “empty roads”, 78% said “the countryside” and 69% “the seaside”

5/ Music also makes most drivers happy. Eight out of 10 people nearly always listen to something while driving with Meatloaf’s Bat out of Hell and Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody top of the driving charts. Pop (70%) and rock (61%) are the most popular genres

Explaining the results, Mr Fagan commented: “Psychologically, women score higher than men on emotional and verbal intelligence, and on the personality trait of neuroticism. Evolutionary theory suggests our early female ancestors had to develop an acute sense of danger for anything that threatened them and their young if their cave was undefended while men were out hunting. That ‘early warning system’ instinct is still relevant today, and women drivers tend to be more sensitive to negative stimuli, so get angry and frustrated quicker.”

Tony Whitehorn, Hyundai Motor UK’s President and CEO comments:  “We are constantly striving to better understand what impacts people’s behaviour when they are driving and this research has certainly revealed some interesting, and somewhat surprising results. By examining drivers’ emotions, our aim is to help them get a better drive both today and in the future.”

Anger busting driver strategies

I am not sure how Hyundai plans to improve the driving ability of those that undertake cars, beep, shout or fail to indicate their directional intentions to women but I can say, hand on heart, that FOXY is doing what it can to help Club members cope with the stressful side of their motoring by being here for them when they need us.

So they can set out to drive to work, for example, in a better and less stressed frame of mind that is more likely to aid their concentration and tolerance of others.

Comments most welcome via Twitter @FOXYtweets.

FOXY Steph

Emergency tyre puncture advice

dont_chance_it_200pxWe’ve all seen cars with flat tyres, presumably without the driver’s knowledge. You’d think they’d sense this when driving because the car will feel odd and be hard to handle.

What they mightn’t realise is that an under (or over) inflated tyre makes their car more prone to accidents and/or tyre failure.

Which is why our advice is ‘Don’t chance it…check it.’

A good habit to get into is to walk around your car regularly to check the condition of all tyres before you get in and drive. This is a simple discipline but you’ll soon spot a low pressure tyre and chances are you can either top it up yourself or get an early puncture repaired for little or no money.

Whereas if you don’t spot a slowly deflating tyre, neglect it and drive on regardless you are likely to end up having to buy a new tyre and of course you’ll have struggled to steer the car safely in the meantime.

What happens if you get a puncture?

A puncture is always inconvenient of course but it can also be frightening, especially if it manifests itself as a blowout – on a motorway journey perhaps?

So here are some practical tyre safety tips to help you detect, hopefully prevent and at worst cope should a tyre puncture happen.

1 Be alert

If you check your car tyres regularly and look out for evidence of a deflating tyre, chances are you’ll spot a slow puncture before it becomes critical to the car’s drive-ability.

2 Be aware

Never ignore the warning signs of a puncture. Make sure you know what to do if you get one. Many drivers only realise that their car doesn’t have a spare wheel when they go to look for it.

Increasingly manufacturers are saving wheel weight in favour of fuel economy and simply supplying cars with an emergency tyre puncture repair canister.

If you want a spare wheel, you should be able to specify this when you buy a brand new car.

3 Be prepared

Make sure your mobile phone is topped up and that you have emergency breakdown cover and know how to contact it.

A patrolman will quickly change a wheel (assuming you have one and the tyre on it is legal), apply an emergency tyre puncture repair or arrange transportation to a garage.

An emergency puncture repair canister is a temporary tyre fix for the tread area of an ordinary car tyre. It won’t be suitable to repair a tyre with sidewall damage nor will it fix one that’s come off its rim or where any puncture or rip is more than 5mm.

Where you can, identify and remove the puncture cause (nail/screw etc) and move the car so the puncture is at the bottom ie road-side of the tyre. You don’t need a car jack and it’s a quick fix.

Just screw the canister connector into the tyre valve, twist the canister to ON and when it’s empty twist it back to OFF and unscrew from the tyre valve. Drive the first six miles at a maximum of 50mph to seal the puncture, check your tyre pressures and go to a tyre centre to get your puncture repair checked.

4 Know your TPMS symbol


Increasingly new cars have a TPMS (Tyre Pressure Monitoring System) which’ll alert you to more than 25% loss of tyre pressure.

Know what the dashboard symbol is and don’t ignore this warning.

The sooner you get this sorted the more likely you are to save your tyre, save money and be safer on the road.

5 Understand the runflat rules

If your car has runflat tyres your TPMS will tell you when one is deflating. You then have 50 miles at 50mph to get to a tyre centre to get it checked.

The good news about runflats is that you are unlikely to face a motorway blow out. The bad news is that these tyres are more expensive than ordinary ones. Once again – the sooner you respond to a TPMS warning, the more likely you’ll save the tyre.

6 Know your tyre choices

If your car has a TPMS but uses ordinary tyres, not run flats, there is a new tyre made by Bridgestone and called DriveGuard with the same characteristics.

That means your dashboard will alert you to a tyre pressure problem and you’ll have 50 miles at 50 mph to get to a tyre centre to fix your DriveGuard.

These tyres are approximately 10% more expensive than normal tyres but, if you’ve ever had a blow out or dread this happening to you, I think they’re worth it because of the peace of mind.

During Tyre Safety Month #TSM16 we have a Tyre Safety Hamper competition at our Facebook Page.

To find out more about tyre safety go to

Suzuki discounts for Club members


The best thing about Suzuki Cars is their reliability record which has remained too much of a secret for too many women drivers till now.

And now these cars are available at very special rates to Club members.

As a dealer in Scotland explained to me recently…

“I find it easy to recommend Suzuki because these cars simply don’t break.”

Valid until 31 December 2016, Club members are entitled to these fabulous affinity discounts on brand new Suzuki cars after three months membership.

If not for the member herself she can share this benefit with a member of the family living at the same address, subject to a maximum of one affinity car sale per 12 month period.

FOXY affinity discounts on Suzuki models

Discounts vary by model as you can see in the poster.

To whet your appetite, the top 30% discount applies to the SX4 S-Cross 1.6 SZ-T MT model reducing the RRP of £19499 by £5652.94, making this a truly impressive and affordable car for just £13846.42.

We recommend you put Suzuki on your shopping list for a small and compact OR rugged and 4×4 vehicle that’s fun to drive at the same time as being environmentally friendly, economic to run and great value to buy.

New models include the face-lifted S-Cross, the Celerio and the Baleno in addition to the better known Suzuki Vitara and Suzuki Swift models.

The best way to see if a new Suzuki is for you is to call in to a Suzuki dealership, identify the model that’s right for you, arrange a test drive and discuss the best FOXY affinity Club deal. This will depend on the offer in place that sales period.

How to find out more…

We suggest you browse the range of Suzuki models at the website.

Then visit your nearest Suzuki dealer to discuss this and arrange a test drive.

And if any females need a new insurance quote it’s got to be FOXY Lady Insurance of course.

To qualify for this Suzuki offer, members will need to show their membership card which will then be checked and verified by Club HQ.

These are great cars and foxy offers. We recommend that members check them out and catch them when they can!

FOXY Steph

Tyre Safety Month #TSM16 Facebook competition

tyreweld_facebook-competition_oct400We are offering a special Tyre Safety Month gift hamper of motoring items as a competition prize at our Facebook page between 1 and 31 October 2016.

Did you know that some nine million cars get a puncture every year and that about half of us don’t know how to change a wheel or what to do if our car broke down on a motorway hard shoulder.

Clearly they won’t find the answer to all these problems in this gift hamper but they’d be able to ask FOXY Lady Drivers Club for advice, were they a Club member.

What the #TSM gift hamper contains

This competition prize has been donated by Holts (whose slogan is ‘Problem Solved’) and includes a range of products you’d need if you got stuck by the roadside.

It comes in an attractive metal toolbox-like exterior and includes:
+ a 400ml bottle of puncture canister Tyreweld plus instructions
+ Holts De-Icer
+ Screen wash and Screenies
+ an emergency foil blanket
+ mini first aid kit
+ a Trek protein flapjack (which we’ve had to hide in case of hunger pangs in the office…)

We’re also adding in a gift membership of FOXY Lady Drivers Club with all our insurance, car buying and motoring special offers plus VIP services and friendly support when things get stressful.

Please tell us what you think of this gift hamper presentation and content so we can feed this back to Holts on your behalf.

Is this something you might buy for yourself, or as a gift? And if so, how much would you pay?

By all means enter the competition at Facebook or tell us what you think at Twitter (where we’re @FOXYtweets).

FOXY Steph

PS: You’ll need to know that the minimum legal tyre tread is 1.6mm – you can check this using a 2Op coin. Just enter it in the tread and looking at it sideways (across the tread) if you can see any of the coin rim your tyre may be illegal or very close.

Is our driving test failing young drivers?

learner_continentaltyresFour in ten new young drivers admit they are unsafe on the road and two thirds of parents agree with them according to a new report released today.

With a revised driving test planned and the theory test now 20 years old, 47 per cent of drivers aged 17 to 24 think that they are not being taught enough about road safety.

Road accidents are the biggest killer of young people and new research reveals 800,000 young motorists think that they have an inadequate level of road safety knowledge. 

The UK research of 1,000 motorists aged 17 to 24 and 1,000 parents of young drivers as part of Continental Vision Zero, a campaign that strives for improved road safety, found that 50 per cent of young motorists would not know where to start with basics like checking their tyres.

Less than half of young road users know what the legal tyre tread limit is and only one in five have no idea what solution, such as a spare tyre, they have available in an event of a puncture.

Mark Griffiths, safety expert at Continental Tyres, said: “Every day in the UK, around nine people die or are seriously injured from a road accident that involves a young car driver. It is vital for 17 to 24 year olds to receive adequate road safety information as they learn to drive, setting them up for a lifetime of safe motoring.”

Shortcomings in the practical driving test

Changes to the practical driving test following the recent consultation include increasing the time of independent driving to 20 minutes, following directions from a sat nav during independent driving, replacing manoeuvres such as reversing around a corner with more common moves such as parking in a bay and asking one of the two vehicle safety questions (e.g. how to use the rear heated screen) while driving.

But parents are also in need of road safety education yet there is no practical driving test or educational solution for them.

When asked about a tyre’s legal tread depth limit, parents were 30 per cent less likely than their children to know the correct answer – only three in ten parents knew it is 1.6mm.

Reflecting their driver failings, one in five young motorists don’t know how to open their car bonnet and a third have no idea how to top up their screen wash.

As agreed by young drivers, the top solutions for improving their safety and that of others are better education (70 per cent), more enforcement such as harsher penalties (38 per cent) and making routine safety checks a feature of the driving test (36 per cent).

FOXY Steph

FOXY Lady Drivers Club can help motoring Mums and daughters who may be learning to drive with motoring related advice. When it comes to tyre safety we are particularly active. Why not consider joining us or buying Club membership including preferential car insurance for women from sister company FOXY Lady Insurance among other benefits?

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