A study headed by Prof Ayalla Ruvio at the Temple University Fox School of Business in Pennsylvania confirmed the link between aggressive and law-breaking driving and perceiving a car as a reflection of one’s self-identity.
The study found increased materialism – the importance of one’s possessions – is linked to aggressive driving, and also showed people with compulsive tendencies are more likely to drive aggressively with little regard for potential consequences.
Unsurprisingly, a higher proportion of men are characterised as aggressive drivers than women, and men are also more likely to see theirs cars as an extension of themselves.
“Individuals may view cars and the road space they occupy as their territory and will seek to maintain control over it and defend it as necessary,” the report said.
According to statistics from the US, aggressive driving causes one third of all accidents that cause injuries and two thirds of all fatal accidents.
The study was complied from the results of two surveys: one that looked holistically at the personalities, attitudes and values of 134 people with an average age of 23.5, and another that looked at impulsivity, risk attraction and pressure of 298 people.