Skip to comments.What kind of driver are you?
Posted on 03/12/2007 11:54:51 AM PDT by Smogger
Are an "Auto-Bahner" or an "Auto-Matic"? Allstate Insurance Co. sponsored a study of 2,500 automobile owners and came up with five distinct driving personalities.
If driving itself does not really excite you, but the car that you drive does, you are probably like 23 percent of those surveyed who were dubbed "Auto-Matics." Auto-Matics, while generally safe and confident drivers, also have been guilty of speeding on occasion. Auto-Matics are likely to feel that the car that they drive is "distinctly styled," "attention-getting," "trendy" and "extravagant."
The next most common driving personality, representing 21 percent of the drivers surveyed, were the "Auto-Nomous" drivers.
These drivers enjoy looking at the scenery when driving and consider themselves "rugged" and "powerful."
Auto-Nomous drivers think of themselves as "good drivers" and their car represents a place of comfort to them. Auto-Nomous personalities are also the least likely to own an economical vehicle and are the most likely to drive a pickup or sport utility vehicle.
Not surprisingly, they are also the group that is most likely to complain about fuel prices. Of these drivers, 63 percent are male. Those who drive "fast" and "aggressively" and have little patience when other drivers make mistakes fall into the category of the "Auto-Bahner" personality.
Eighty percent of the drivers who identified with this group admitted to having driven 20 miles or more over the speed limit.
Understandably, Auto-Bahners were also the most likely to have been pulled over by law enforcement officials within the past five years, with more than half of those surveyed having received moving violations.
One-third of Auto-Bahners also admitted to driving after having three or more drinks. Of all drivers surveyed, 17 percent were determined to be Auto-Bahners. Of this group, 63 percent were male.
If the word "practical" describes both the way you drive and what you drive, you are likely an "Auto-Pragmatic." Fifteen percent of those surveyed fell into this group, with a driving style they considered "safe" and "cautious."
Auto-Pragmatics prefer cars that are safe, convenient, economical, environmentally friendly and practical. Most Auto-Pragmatics took particularly good care of their vehicles - inside and out. A good percentage of this group were unemployed or retired. Women made up 69 percent of Auto-Pragmatics.
The final 15 percent of drivers surveyed were determined to have the driving personality dubbed "Auto-Pilot."
"Reliable" and "family oriented," most in this group would prefer to occupy the passenger's seat than the driver's seat. This was the least confident group behind the wheel.
Auto-Pilots rely on their cars for doing everyday chores, but do not feel that their vehicles represent who they really are. Women made up 71 percent of the Auto-Pilots.
Todd DeYoung, vice president of marketing at Allstate, explained his company is always trying to "gain a deeper understanding of the driving habits of Americans."
"The survey not only revealed the depth of Americans' opinions about driving-related issues, but it also produced unique personalities, or `Car-ma' based on actual driving actions."
Michelle Groh-Gordy is a longtime traffic school instructor and the owner of InterActive! Traffic School Online (www.trafficinteractive.com). Send questions to email@example.com or write to DriveTime c/o The Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, PO Box 4000, Ontario, CA 91761. Some reader questions will be answered every other week.
Guess I'm an auto-pragmatic. I like the independence of driving, but for me the car is just a way to get somewhere. I used to speed, but got tired of getting tickets.
"Those who drive "fast" and "aggressively" and have little patience when other drivers make mistakes fall into the category of the "Auto-Bahner" personality.
Eighty percent of the drivers who identified with this group admitted to having driven 20 miles or more over the speed limit.
Understandably, Auto-Bahners were also the most likely to have been pulled over by law enforcement officials within the past five years"
Used to be an auto-bahner but have calmed down a bit after a couple of accidents. I'm more auto-pragmatic with some leftover auto-bahner attributes.
ah...so you admit you drink and drive....
O.K. that rules me out, what's the classification for folks who admit driving over 50 miles over the speed limit?
Other major drivers groups are "paranoiacs", "maniacs" and "idiots" [the largest]. It perplexes me why these were omitted.
I see they left out the all important Auto-Moron category. These people are generally everyone but me on the road.
Anybody that drives slower that me is an idiot, anybody that drives faster than me is a maniac. Simple!
"Auto-pilots" are really "sidewalk Commandos" with wheels. most of them should be on the bus. Camry and mini van drivers are the worst offenders..
Nope. I admit nothing, except having had a speeding ticket in the last five years. I have never had an accident, but I have been hit by a few Auto-Pragmatics. People that are not confident about their abilities behind the wheel tend to feel that way for good reason in my experience.
Got you by a couple of seconds.
Does 120 in a 55 barefoot without my license in the car count as a ultr-auto-bahner?
Sadly, I'm a auto-drive what I'm stuck with due to the responsibilities of life.
4 kids = full size and minivan. I hate it with a passion, but the Mustang will have to wait a few years.
When teaching my daughter to drive the full size van, I cautioned her to not exceed 80mph on the freeway until she gets more wheel time.
And I rarely, if ever, suffer from Road Rage, although I always tend to end up riding shotgun with people who do. I suffer from Parking Lot rage ... living in a tourist trap as I do.
Speaking of parking, be sure you never end up here.
They say that like it's a bad thing.
LOL! As a fellow Auto-Banner, I relate all too well. Most likely the Auto-Pilots drive mini-vans. Typically, when in front of you in the lane, will sit for 5-10 seconds before moving out on the green light. Always wonder if there is some sort of built-in delay hardwired in their brains.
And the other 9%? 9% seems a bit much to be explained by rounding.
Especially when you tailgate them...
I would say illegals (no drivers license or insurance, can't read road signs quickly, too short, and started driving too late), and non native born Asians (too short, can't read road signs quickly, started driving too late) are the worst offenders.
In general if you come from a country that relies heavily on public transportation, and didn't even spend you childhood in a passengers seat, you will never be anything but an indecisive, awkward, dangerous driver.
But I am just a bigot.
I firmly believe that Auto-Pragmatics and Auto-Bahners combined are causing 95% of all accidents, both minor and those with multiple fatalities.
The Pragmatics are just annoying.
The Bahners ("Boners") are literally homicidal.
I don't really fit well into any of the categories. I think the auto-matic might be the best fit, except the car I drive is hardly "distinctly styled," "attention-getting," "trendy" and "extravagant" (unless to consider the rust spots on my 1995 Opel Astra "attention-getting" and the Diet Coke cans scattered about "extravagant.")
I'm on the real Autobahn a lot more often than the Auto-bahner-wanna-be's, though. It's nice being able to "make good time" without worring about tickets, but after the first hour the first time it's no big deal. It's still kind of cool seeing the occasional Mercedes fly past at warp speed, though.
Idiot = Someone in front of you who is driving slower then you want to go.
Maniac = Someone who passes you up.
You and I both know that there are only two types of drivers, other than oneself, on the road:
Those driving too slow, who are morons, and those driving too fast, who are idiots.
I think someone is autoerotic-ing us.
Nice. When someone cuts her off and she rolls that van down an embankment, please come back and tell us so I can laugh about it.
Another of their favorite traits is to relentlessly crawl at 35 - 40 max on an entrance ramp when the traffic that you're trying to merge with is going 70 - 75. Then, when they can't find a large enough gap they stop at the end of the ramp blocking you from merging.
Another is to sit in the passing lane going at or slightly below the speed limit smugly thinking how they're enforcing the traffic laws.
When I die, I want to go peacefully, in my sleep. Just like my Grandpa.
Not screaming and yealling like the passengers in his car! ;-P
There also are paranoiacs, who seem to tailgate and follow you no matter where you go.
Just as I was beginning to feel guilty about zipping along at 15 mph over the posted limit, a guy in a Toyota Prius went by me at what had to be 90 mph. I wonder if he's some sort of sub-sub-category.
I was on the Autostrada somewhere north of Firenze with the gas pedal mashed to the floor and getting ready to speedshift into fourth when a Jaguar starship passed doing about 100 mph faster than my VW van like we were going the wrong way. Almost missed the shift, which would have cost ten minutes of progress toward high gear.
Currently an Auto-Matic, with a genetic predisposition for -Bahnism. Funny, when I had 4 hondas in a row, then a slow pickup, I drove like a bat out of hell. Now that I have something very fast, I drive much more responsibly (94% of the time!!!). Or maybe I'm finally growing up.
Everybody in front of you is an idiot driving slowly. Everybody behind you is a maniac trying to get past you. Everybody's an idiot or a maniac, because nobody's driving my speed. Somebody drives my speed I slow down so I can keep an eye on them.
I think they missed some, namely Auto de fe (popular among "middle ages" drivers), auto-destruct (first phase of road rage) to Autopsy (final stage of road rage)!
I'm an excellent driver.
What, you don't like those idiots who camp in the left lane on the interstate and refuse to move over, and then are baffled that they get flipped off a lot?
Just what we need: schizophrenic drivers on the road. More sets of mutually exclusive terms in that descriptor than I care to critique.
When my brother sees someone driving as you describe, he sings aloud, "I'm alone in the universe, nobody counts but me-ee." I started doing it, and it makes me laugh every time. Greatly reduces the annoyance of driving among the auto-morons.
"LOL! As a fellow Auto-Banner, I relate all too well. Most likely the Auto-Pilots drive mini-vans. Typically, when in front of you in the lane, will sit for 5-10 seconds before moving out on the green light. Always wonder if there is some sort of built-in delay hardwired in their brains"
VW bus and Volvo drivers are the worst!!!
I'm an Auto-Pilot, I guess. I drive as fast I feel safe (speed of traffic, mostly - speed limits are just suggestions...), and I leave lots of room between me and the next car so that I can observe the antics of the Auto-Bahners and the Auto-Nomous in relative safety.
As far as I'm concerned, an automobile is a box to get people, groceries and luggage from point A to point B in relative safety and comfort, with adequate speed.
See # 31. As an immigrant to the US [naturalized, and have been here 25 years], I plead an invincible ignorance as to George Carlin [?- and who is/was he?] and his routines. Thus I claim independent discovery.
I've had one wreck in the last 41 years, and it was my fault because I wasn't paranoid at the time.
These boobs are the worst, and I seem to be behind one almost every time I get on the freeway. Probably my #2 pet peeve, behind drivers who don't understand that "keep right except to pass" means to, you know, keep to the right. Except to pass. And then get back to the right. Regardless of your speed.
While I'm on the tangent, the third worst is drivers who blithely trap you in parking lots or on side streets waiting to turn out because they can't be bothered to use their turn signal to let you know they won't be crossing your path. In a just world, instead of running speed traps the police would follow those drivers to their destination and hold their door shut when they get there to waste 30 seconds of their time like they wasted mine.
Now that we have a police state, I set my cruise conrol to 10 MPH over the limit, put my brain on autopilot and get home without jangled nerves.
Only if you're running on those bare feet. ;^P