The evolutionary path of automobility in BRICS countries

Projections indicate that global transport may more than double by 2050. Future car stock and use are of paramount importance for drafting policy measures and for assessing emerging technology developments. This paper uses a unique forecasting approach combining quantitative data and qualitative expert judgements. Based on the historic development of vehicle kilometers traveled (VKT) in four OECD countries, the approach assesses potential future development paths for BRICS countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) and derives VKT saturation levels for these. For this purpose, the authors investigated eight factors with influence on car ownership and car use. A group of experts established factor values for the BRICS countries and compared these to the factor values in the OECD countries. Subsequently, the authors linked the factor values to levels of car use. Among the BRICS countries, they expect the lowest VKT saturation levels for India and China, mainly but not exclusively due to their spatial structures and transport policies. Spatial structures, socio-economic legacies and policies, among other factors, are leading to higher expected VKT saturation levels in Brazil, Russia and South Africa. Those countries also face challenges to establish alternatives to the private car.


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  • Accession Number: 01746129
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: May 30 2020 3:05PM