Six million motorists have names for their cars – with Bessie the most popular, new research revealed today.
Around one in five of the country’s 28.7 million car owners ‘christen’ their motors with affectionate monikers as soon as they pick up the keys.
Other common names include Bob and Betty and the less pleasant title of ‘The Beast’.
A string of old-fashioned sounding names like Freddie, Millie and Daisy are also used, the study of 2,000 drivers by Continental Tyres found.
Spokeswoman Laura Hardy said: “Our cars are important to us and naming them shows just how much.”
”Although the affection demonstrated does not equate to looking after it as many motorists sadly neglect the upkeep of their vehicles.
”The survey shows that a quarter of us never do basic checks such as tyre tread depth and pressure, oil, screenwash and checking lights are working – all of which have an impact not only on safety but on maintenance costs.”
Treasured childhood characters are also popular with names such as Tigger, Nemo, Woody, Zippy, Scooby and Dipsy appearing on the list.
Some people have visions of grandeur by giving their motors names like Batmobile, Enterprise and Thor.
When asked how they felt about their cars, a third of respondents said they ‘loved it and couldn’t live without it’.
Women are 23 per cent more likely to feel this way about their wheels than men.
The survey was commissioned by Continental Tyres to launch their new website www.girlsguidetomotoring.co.uk which shows how easy it is to do basic checks and save money on your car.
Top ten car names: