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How Many Cars do Americans Have?

There are about 70 cars for every 100 people in the United States — that's more cars than there are licensed drivers, and about 20 cars more per 100 people than in countries such as Japan and Britain. Despite the car/person ratio, vehicle occupancy is declining. In the U.S., vehicle occupancy averages about 1.7 people per vehicle, down from about 2.2 people per vehicle in 1970.

More vehicle statistics:

  • In the U.S., the average person spends a little more than an hour per day in a car.

  • The massive car ownership is leading to major traffic problems in many cities. The cities with the worst traffic in the world are Beijing, Mexico City and Johannesburg. The worst U.S. cities for traffic are Los Angeles, New York and Houston.

  • Despite the massive fuel expenditures, air travel is sometimes better for the environment because planes usually are mostly full when they're in use, unlike cars, which usually carry only one or two people.

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