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Europeans remain wedded to their cars

By PRW Staff
Posted 19 November 2012

The majority of European car drivers remain committed to car ownership but are increasingly concerned about congestion, environmental issues and the cost of driving, according to a new poll.

In what will doubtless be music to the ears of those plastics firms supplying the region's automotive sector, the Ford-sponsored survey found the majority of respondents said life without a car would be “impossible”.

However, of the 6,000 people questioned across Europe 76% said they were stressed out by driving on congested roads and paying more for fuel.

Nearly three quarters of of those surveyed used public transport when not using their cars, while more than a third shared cars when making the same journey. Only 3% were members of a formal car-sharing scheme.

Barb Samardzich, Ford Europe’s vice president, product development, said the survey results illustrated the need for "public dialogue and stakeholder involvement to address issues of mobility and environmental responsibility.

“As the world becomes more crowded and more urbanised we don’t want to lose the freedom of mobility and that’s why we need to take a collaborative and integrated approach.”

Experts predict there will be between two and four billion cars on the road by 2050, up from today’s figure of one billion.

Meanwhile congestion costs are expected to rise by 200bn (£161m) each and every year over the same period, according to the European Commission.

Other key findings of the survey included:

  • 77% of respondents would not cut car usage to help solve environmental problems
  • 72 % said fuel efficiency is a major consideration when buying a car
  • 53% said climate change was the world’s biggest problem
  • 50% would use a more environmentally-friendly driving style if they understood the financial benefit

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