Transport: One car for every 2.2 Britons

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Britain is still falling slightly behind other leading European countries in terms of car usage, according to figures published today. The UK has one car for every 2.3 people, compared with the EU average of one for every 2.2 people.

Excepting Luxembourg (one to 1.8), Italy has the most cars - with one for every 1.9 of the population. Other high car usage countries are Germany with one car for every 2.0 people, France (one to 2.2) and Austria (one to 2.2). The overall European average, including non-EU countries is one car for every 4.0 people - the average being lowered by the countries forming the old Soviet Union (one to 16.0) and Turkey (one to 18.6).

Elsewhere, the US has one car for every 2.0 people while Canada can boast a one to 2.1 ratio. Cars are scarcest in Bangladesh (one for every 2,250 people), Burma (one to 1,518) and Ethiopia (one to 1,127).

The figures are revealed in the 1997 World Automotive Statistics from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders.