When you buy a new car, do you check the size of the spare wheel, or are you more concerned with organising vehicle wrapping in Essex to make sure your new motor looks the part?

Although your car’s appearance is obviously important, so too is the kind of spare you have in the boot. Research conducted by What Car? and shared by the RAC earlier this month revealed that just eight per cent of new cars sold in the UK have a full-sized spare wheel in their boot.

If that’s got you wondering what’s there instead, then you’ll find that 55 per cent of new vehicles are equipped with a puncture repair kit, while 30 per cent have a slimmer, space-saver spare wheel that’s only suitable for use at low speeds.

As a result of the lack of full-sized spare tyres in new vehicles, the RAC revealed it has seen a 335 per cent increase in the number of patrols being called to cars with a puncture and no spare wheel since 2010.

Pete Williams, RAC spokesman, commented: “For many drivers it is only when they actually suffer a puncture or damage to a wheel when encountering a pothole that they discover that their shiny new car doesn’t have a spare.”

Puncture repair kits can be used as a temporary fix to enable you to drive to a garage to buy a new wheel, although the RAC noted that these kits don’t always work, and that you also need to re-inflate the tyre before you can drive anywhere.

This could be a particular concern given that research by the AA at the beginning of May found that 88 per cent of drivers believe that the UK’s roads are in a worse condition now than they were ten years ago.