ASTON MARTIN drivers in Aberystwyth are likely to have the worst understanding of motoring of anyone in Wales, a study has shown.
In fact, it may be for the best that the number of people who drive James Bond's car of choice in the coastal town is likely to be somewhat limited.
The first ever motoring intelligence test, carried out by eBay Motors in conjunction with Mensa, has revealed that drivers in Aberystwyth have some of the worst driver IQs in Britain.
Huw Jones, 24, who lives near Aberystwyth, and regularly drives in and around the seaside town, agreed that the standard of driving in the area wasn't particularly high.
"It's pretty poor on the whole," he said. "It's a tough town to become good at driving in, because there's no dual carriageways or anything, and there's not much traffic.
"Also everyone is fairly friendly and you get let out at junctions fairly easily, so it's a lot more difficult when it comes to driving in cities.
"It doesn't help that a lot of people who drive round here have learnt in Lampeter, where there's only one roundabout!"
Swansea also figured in the bottom 10 of the UK league table, while owners of Aston Martins and Bentleys were found to have the worst knowledge of all things car-related.
The test quizzed around 6,000 drivers on categories including motoring trivia, mechanical know-how, driving regulations and driving-themed question on logic and mental arithmetic.
And the results made for some alarming reading, with only half of those tested able to identify the correct stopping distance at 50mph. Just one in five were aware of correct tyre tread depths, while 14% were unable to recognise basic road signs and one in 20 were unaware of the motorway speed limit.
Nigel Whitehouse, road safety officer for South Wales Police, urged all drivers to ensure they had a full and detailed knowledge of the rules of the road.
"It's very important that every driver has got as good a knowledge of the rules of the road as possible, and that includes signage around the roads, what they mean and the difference between temporary and permanent signage.
"With a lot of drivers, once they pass their theory test, the Highway Code goes out the window, and they forget all about the signs and what they mean. They are there for a reason and not just for their own sake.
"It's really important that people keep abreast of the regulations and have a brief look through their Highway Code every now and then just to refresh their memories.
And Sgt Whitehouse added that it was crucial that all drivers had some knowledge of how to keep their car roadworthy.
"Some people will never open their bonnets, while others will cover themselves with oil at every chance," he said.
"But I think it's important that all drivers have at least a basic knowledge of cars, even if it's just down to doing weekly checks on your car to check things your tyres and make sure your fluid reservoirs are topped up. It doesn't take a scientist.
"It's always nice to have some knowledge of how the car works, and if you haven't got that knowledge yourself, make sure your car is checked on a regular basis. People should take their cars to someone who does have that knowledge or to a garage so they can have a cursory glance at the important factors, particularly at this time of year."
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