More than half of UK drivers say having access to a car is more important than it was before the coronavirus pandemic, with public transport confidence at an 18-year low.

The RAC’s annual Report on Motoring found 57 per cent of people believe having access to a car was more important than it was before March. Two-thirds of drivers in three specific groups – young drivers, those with fewer than 10 years’ driving experience and people living in London – are all significantly more likely to say they need a car more now than they did before Covid-19.

For the first time since 2002, fewer than half of drivers (43 per cent) say they would use their cars less, even if public transport was improved – a sharp decline from 57 per cent in 2019, resulting in public transport confidence dropping.

RAC spokesperson Rod Dennis said: ‘Even with lower traffic volumes, the pandemic appears to have reinforced the bond between drivers and their cars – with public transport less attractive than ever.”