Female motorists set to outnumber male counterparts in US, UK
Women motorists in the U.S. and the UK are set to outnumber their male counterparts on the road, according to a study.
An analysis for the RAC Foundation has revealed a dramatic narrowing of the gender gap on the roads since the mid-1990s.
In the USA, the number of women drivers has just outstripped men for the first time and on the latest projections it is only a matter of time before Britain follows.
Not only are more women driving, but they are driving further, with their mileage rising by more than a fifth between 1995 and 2010, the Telegraph reports.
"Women are in the overtaking lane when it comes to license holding. No longer are they sat in the passenger seat, simply along for the ride," Stephen Glaister, director of the RAC Foundation, said.
"Greater social and financial independence has increasingly put them in the driving seat and it is entirely plausible Britain will replicate the United States where female motorists are now dominant," Glasiter said.
"They are increasingly leading independent lives with more and more of them going to work, getting married later, if at all, and delaying having children," she added.
According to the report, in 1995 there were 15.1 million male drivers and 9.2 million women motorists.
By 2010 the gap had fallen dramatically with 16.3 million women holding driving licenses, compared with 19 million men.
The proportion of women having licenses over this period has risen from 50 percent to 64 percent during this period, the report said.
It is believed that the sharp rise in the number of women motorists reflects a change in society which has seen them becoming economically more independent, as well as having their first child later.
At the same time the percentage of men in their 20s holding licenses has fallen by 14 percent to 65 percent, the report added.
According to the report, the drop in young men driving is believed to reflect tougher economic times, with more living at home and finding it harder to earn the money to run a car.
The study was carried out by the RAC Foundation, the Office of Rail Regulation, the Independent Transport Commission and Transport Scotland, the report added.