To Ride Shotgun. Origin

We call shotgun here, but it can be overridden by someone licking the door handle, somehow i don't see that part as being related to the original meaning though. ;)
Licking the door handle? never heard of that before.

But yeah, I always shotgun front seat
Interesting , I didn't know that.
Uhm we actually call it "death seat" because car accidents kill many more passengers sitting there than drivers. Yeah I know that's macabre.
But this is what I could find about the shotgun and the *****:

Shotgun, source:

The Theory
The term "Shotgun" refers to the front passenger seat of an automobile. "Calling Shotgun" is the act of claiming the position of Shotgun for one's self. As this position is the most coveted of all positions when riding in a car, the following list of rules has been created to ensure that Shotgun can be acquired in a fair and equitable manner by any passenger of an automobile.


The History
The history of calling "Shotgun" goes back to the days of covered wagons and the Wild West. On a trip across the plains, the driver of a wagon would hold the reins of his horse team and concentrate on driving. This left him and the occupants of his wagon susceptible to sneak attacks from bandits and thieves. To avoid this atrocious circumstance it became necessary for one person to sit next to the driver with a shotgun and fend off the enemy.
Defending against bandits is no longer the priority of Shotgun however, but it has evolved into a pre-driving ritual that is experienced before almost every car ride across America and even the world. Because of the obvious evolution that has already occurred with Shotgun, we ask you to consider Shotgun as a living entity and be aware that it is always changing for the better good of society.

*****, source:

The Middle Seat of a Pickup Truck or Coupe

The word ***** as in the phrase "riding *****" can refer to the middle of a pickup truck or sports coupe in which one is sandwiched between the driver and another passenger—an uncomfortable position when space in the car is scarce. In this context, the driver of the vehicle is the dominant, or "in charge." The "*****" in this scenario is the one closest to the driver.
The origins of the phrase "riding *****" could be interpreted as chauvinistic or sexist. Traditionally, throughout the world, men have been the drivers and women have sat next to them, with the child or passenger in the seat furthest from the driver.
The phrase "riding *****" was coined in order to connotate a sense of superiority on behalf of the driver while denigrating the passenger closest to him. In the United States, it is widely used as a joke amongst close friends in scenes ranging from athletics, to the military, to working-class men of various backgrounds as well as rural "redneck" culture and urban "thug" culture.
As well, there is the "*****'s *****", which is the trunk of a sports coupe. The cannotations of this refer to the idea that if there is extremly limited seating, somebody can curl up and ride in the trunk of the car, but that doing so puts them extremly low on the hierarchy--so low that they are the "*****" even to the person who is everybody elses "*****", that being the person who is "riding *****".
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We call shotgun in Aus too but some of us also use it to lay claim to something for example if someone said "Who wants the rest of my coke (first thing that came to my head)", then someone would yell "Shotgun" or 'Shotty'.
That's so wrong. Big girls need lovin' too! ^_^

Does anyone know why it's called the B*tch seat? I mean, aside from the obvious...? On another note, my boyfriend used to ride ***** until I gave him flak about it in front of his friends. I didn't mean for anyone to hear, but they did and wouldn't let him live it down, so now he won't do it. lol

To quote the immortal Glenn Quagmire "Fat girls need love too. But they gotta pay."
In Norway we use the expression "Shotgun" when we want to sit in the front passenger seat in the car..
Anyone else using that expression?
Yeah we use that in Arizona my sister shouts it three time when going for a drive.