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Battle of the sexes on car forecourts

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NINE out of 10 women are in the driving seat when it comes to influencing a couple's car-buying decision, says AA Personal Finance.

Half of UK women claim that they chose the make and model of new cars, with a further 42 per cent saying they influence important behind-the-scenes decisions.

Julie Pentin, head of marketing, AA Car Finance, said: "It is clear that, despite what many men may like to think, the tables have been turned and women are now making decisions which have traditionally been a male preserve."

However, when it comes to the battle on the forecourts, only a third of women, 34 per cent, are prepared to haggle on the price of a car, against 52 per cent of men.

Julie Pentin said: "The message is simple: don't be afraid to ask for money off a new car. If that fails, ask for extras like road tax, free breakdown cover and accessories. Motorists should equally shop around for their finance, because they can save thousands of pounds if they get the best deal available on motor loans."

For more information on the AA's range of motor finance products, including car loans, personal loans, hire purchase and personal contract purchase, or a personal quote, call 0800 0968345 or visit www.theAA.com.

Meanwhile, the caricature of white van man is a sham, according to AA Insurance.

Contrary to the popular belief that he is a reckless, accident-prone 25-year-old, the average white van man, if he exists, is 40, a safe driver and has held his licence for more than 18 years and has not made an insurance claim for four and a half years.

In fact, the only part of the stereotype which rings true is that he is male, 94 per cent of commercial vehicle insurance quotes are obtained by men.

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