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Report Says Auto Growth Could ‘Hit the Brakes’

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January 30, 2014 by   Leave a Comment

Another report claiming we’re hitting the automotive saturation point. This one, a global warning from IHS Automotive: “Trends in urban motorization could reduce the number of motor vehicles in use globally in 2035 by 250 million and trim new sales by 30 million units annually.”

According to a report by USA Today, too many cars in too little space is spurring regulations limiting auto ownership and use. And that comes as worldwide factory production capacity already exceeds the demand for the foreseeable future.

The biggest squeeze is forecast in the very countries the auto industry is counting on for continued growth, the so-called BRIC nations — Brazil, Russia, India and China.

According to IHS, “Asian and other developing-market cities will not achieve the levels of car motorization enjoyed in the West, nor meet sales and production growth levels currently forecast by the auto industry.”

The IHS report follows one earlier by Michael Sivak at the University of Michigan’s Transportation Research Institute.

“Trends suggest that motorization in the U.S. might have reached a peak several years ago,” he writes.

“Recent studies have shown that — per person, per driver, and per household — we now have fewer light-duty vehicles, we drive each of them less, and we consume less fuel than in the past,” Sivak writes. “The recent increase in the proportion of households without a vehicle provides additional support for the hypothesis that motorization in the U.S. peaked during the previous decade.”

Sivak cites social and demographic factors — more people living in cities where mass transit is a good option, for instance.

For the full report click here.

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