Women and Motors

Car Saleswomen more Trustworthy than Men

25 January 2008

Forget buying a motor from Swiss Toni or Phil's Car Lot, new research reveals that Lorraine Kelly and Paula Radcliffe are amongst the celebrities most British drivers would trust to sell them a reliable vehicle - and overall, Britons are more likely to trust a female car salesperson.

With Phil Mitchell's recent dodgy dealings of 'Cut and Shuts' doing nothing to buoy-up the reputation of the second-hand car dealer, AA Personal Loans polled a GB representative sample of 1,500 motorists to find out which celebrities embody the characteristics of a trustworthy car salesperson.

TV presenter Lorraine Kelly was identified as the person people would most regard as a reliable car salesperson, with more than one sixth of the vote (17%) and a strong female following (22% compared to 13% men). In fact, at a time when the gender divide in car buying is closing, with women driving demand for second-hand vehicles1, four of the top five choices of trustworthy car salespeople were women.

Jeremy Paxman, the authoritative journalist and TV presenter, was the favourite amongst male drivers, 18% saying that they would trust him not to pull the wool over their eyes.

Mr Bean was not a popular choice, but even he was pipped to the bottom of the list by Del-Boy Trotter and Alan Partridge.

AA Personal Loans' league of Reliable Salespeople

Rank Celebrity/Character percentage
of vote
1 Lorraine Kelly 17%
2 Jeremy Paxman 16%
3 Paula Radcliffe 10%
4 Carol Thatcher 5%
5 Jo Brand 5%
6 Sharon Osborne 4%
7 Katie Price/Jordan 2%
8 Mr Bean 1%
9 Derek Trotter 1%
10 Alan Partridge 0.5%

Further findings

  • Older drivers most cautious: Drivers aged over 55 were most likely to say that they would not trust any of these celebrity figures to sell them a reasonable vehicle (42%).
  • North East put faith in Jordon: Drivers in the North East are three time more likely to consider Katie Price aka Jordon trustworthy of selling them a reliable vehicle than her fellow Southerners (6% compared to 2%).
  • South West support Carol Thatcher: Carol Thatcher earned 11% of the west country vote.
  • Welsh love Sharon: Sharon Osbourne is most trusted in Wales where 6% consider her someone they could rely on to sell them a reliable motor.

Mark Huggins, Head of AA Personal Loans says: "Our research started out as a bit of fun, but actually says quite a lot about the characteristics that people associate with being a trustworthy salesperson. With the gender balance in the car market shifting, women being just as likely to buy a second hand car as men, it makes sense that many would prefer to buy a car from a woman.

"Previous research has shown that one in four drivers will knowingly sell a second-hand car without revealing a known fault with the vehicle, so it's important that car buyers are vigilant no matter whom they are buying from. The AA Personal Loans offers a free six month warranty on all used cars bought with an AA Personal Loans which will cover you for any hidden faults - whether the seller knows about them or not."

Notes to Editors

1According to AA Personal Loans' Deals on Wheels research, 29% of women will buy a second hand vehicle over three years old in the next year, compared to 26% men.

More Car buying and selling advice in the AA Car Buyer's Guide


25 January 2008