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More cars than drivers in the USA

The United States now has 246 million registered motor vehicles and 209 million licensed drivers--nearly 5 vehicles for every 4 drivers. (from

How are there more cars than drivers? I don't know anyone who owns two cars. I know of families of two that own two cars. But I don't know anyone that owns more cars than drivers.

By Matt Maldre on Jan 25, 10 | 10:20 am  |   [7588] Hits  |   permalink | archives

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More cars than drivers ... that makes my brain hurt. Even if a family of 6 where all 6 drive and all 6 have their own cars that is still just 1 car per driver. Even if a car collector owns dozens of cars that s/he and s/he alone drives, that can't possible move the number up to 5 vehicles for every 4 drivers in the U.S.

Posted by: Tom on Jan 25, 10 | 12:06 pm

It does say "Motor Vehicles." So, that includes scooters, motorcycles, recreational vehicles. I once owned a car and a motorcycle.

My parents own three vehicles for two drivers; long story short: my dad doesn't want to to sell his '92 Ford Bronco.

So, I think these two cases really point to it: 1. cars last longer and people just wanting to keep them, and 2. people owning a recreational vehicle such as a motorcycle or an RV.

But all that said... wow! that's a surprising statistic. I would have never thought (especially since I haven't owned a vehicle since my first months in Chicago).

Posted by: Andre on Jan 26, 10 | 5:30 pm

Work vehicles? I imagine a fair number of people (such as truck drivers) own a personal vehicle and then also have another registered vehicle they use for work.

Posted by: Byron on Mar 01, 10 | 3:28 pm

My dad has always had a lot of cars. Ha. He drives an Olds Aurora, my Mom drives a Buick Lucerne, he has a Chevy S-10 for his gardening and heavy moving, then a Corvette for sunday fun driving.

The nice thing, is if my car breaks down, there's always a car for me to drive frommy parents, so thats very nice. Or when i need to move, i can borrow their truck.

Posted by: TheAstrolabe on Mar 08, 10 | 10:54 am

oh wow astro, your dad has cars like i have hot wheels cars

Posted by: spudart on Mar 08, 10 | 11:02 am

I think Jay Leno is to blame...

Posted by: royantoun on Jan 07, 11 | 3:05 pm

Hi. I'm Matt Maldre. Every single weekday my blog on has a new post with an original idea or discovery. Be sure to stop by daily to see what's happening.

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