Almost half of UK motorists are guilty of potentially causing an accident as a result of their animosity towards fellow drivers, according to a new survey.

Some 45 per cent of Brits allow their own prejudices to affect how courteous or aggressively they act towards other road users, research for Continental Tyres shows, with colour, type, and cleanliness grinding our gears.

The survey, which was taken by 2,000 drivers, shows that more than a third admit they allow their preconceptions to take control of the wheel, with drivers using a mobile phone the least likely to be let in at a junction.

Research shows that drivers are twice as likely to not let someone out at a junction if they are in a flash car because 'they think they're it', and it's bad news for pensioners, as the survey reveals they are the tenth most likely to be shunned at a junction.

Shockingly, sports fans seem willing to put support ahead of safety on the road as six in ten drivers get agitated by a sticker for a rival sports team, or in support of a cause or organisation, leading Continental Tyres spokesman, Mark Griffiths, to call out the quick-tempered motorists.

"It is alarming that 34 per cent of drivers will change their driving style based on a prejudice about something as unimportant as how clean a vehicle is," said Mark.

"Keen observation is vital for road safety and this study was part of our commitment to making driving safer, while trying to understand the ways that motorists behave."

The jury is still out on hybrid and electric vehicle with a third of drivers believing owners are right to consider the environment whereas an equal number describe them as 'tree-huggers' or 'self-righteous'.

When it comes to thinking about their own appearance the majority of motorists say they are not bothered about the prejudices made about their car. Over half expect to be stereotyped - though only one in seven admit it affects their choice of car.

The survey did reveal some good news though, as 27 per cent of people make an effort to be courteous to people in the same make and model of car as them, though Mark Griffiths at Continental Tyres hopes this will be the case for all drivers.

"We might form opinions of people based on issues like appearance, though for that to lead to more aggressive driving is dangerous," said Mark. "We think road users must be courteous to others at all times.

"Rather than aesthetic and other non-risk affecting features, the important should be placed on factors like driving behaviour, car safety and tyre condition - as these are the things that really impact on safety."

The full list of top ten drivers that are least likely to be let in at a junction are:

1. Anyone using a mobile phone

2. Performance car

3. Towing a caravan

4. Flash car

5. 4x4

6. Taxi driver

7. Learner

8. Bus

9. Van

10. Pensioner

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