As many as 50% of car drivers will use their vehicles less in 2013 if motoring costs continue to rise.
More than three in five (62%) say their enjoyment of driving has decreased due to ever-rising costs, a survey by AXA car insurance found. Northern Ireland drivers have become the most disenchanted by driving, with enjoyment the highest in south east England.
Based on responses from 2,000 motorists, the survey showed that continued high motoring costs will lead to 20% of drivers feeling less independent, 19% eschewing long journeys and 18% making fewer visits to family and friends. But 26% said they felt they had little choice but to meet the higher prices.
The poll also revealed:
:: 69% of drivers say fuel prices are already too high and 57% are frustrated by fuel taxation;
:: 27% admit to driving over the speed limit in urban areas and 19% eat and drink while driving;
:: 4% have driven without an MoT and 4% have driven with no car tax;
:: The most common example of bad driving is not holding the steering wheel properly and not putting the handbrake on when coming to a stop;
:: BMW drivers are considered the most arrogant and the poorest motorists, followed by Range Rover and Ferrari drivers, while owners of Volvos, Volkswagens and Hondas are considered to be the best drivers.
Amanda Edwards, at AXA Insurance, said: "As all of us are becoming increasingly concerned about finances, it's no surprise that the costs related to driving are at the top of motorists' frustrations."