According to a recent survey, Mahindra Automotive Australia (MAA), distributors of the Mahindra Pik-Up ute, say the gender divide no longer exists when it comes to driving a ute.
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MAA said 78.5 per cent of those surveyed thought perceptions of women driving utes had completely changed with only 21.5 per cent of respondents saying utes were a "man's car".

"Our research showed that people generally view the ute as an all-purpose family vehicle rather than just a workhorse, so have no qualms in seeing women drive vehicles with grunt," said Claire Tynan, CEO, Mahindra Automotive Australia.

The survey also found that 37.3 per cent believe vehicles are not gender specific, 27.1 per cent said a ute was a great all-purpose vehicle that can suit women too, and 14.1 per cent saying work-roles were no longer gender specific.

Some respondents (21.9 per cent), even said that female ute drivers looked independent and sexy.

"What’s interesting is that at the dealer level we’re seeing more and more women coming in to look at the vehicle as part of their purchasing process," said Ms Tynan."And we have many female Pik-Up drivers who do a range of jobs, anything from farming to bird breeding, where space and durability is the key,"Many of our male buyers also see their purchase very much as a joint decision, taking into account what their partners will appreciate."

The survey found that only 3.1 per cent of those surveyed thought a ute was an "unbecoming" vehicle for a woman to drive.

Mahindra also surveyed prospective female ute buyers as to the purpose the car would serve with 42.8 per cent saying they would happily consider a dual-cab ute as their family car.

CarAdvice will be road testing the new 2010 Mahindra Pik-Up shortly, stay tuned.