Cost of Mobility

From 2007 to 2008
This study analyses the cost of driving a car for 10 countries: Germany, France, UK, The Netherlands, Sweden, Denmark, Spain, Italy, Poland and the Czech Republic. To have a clear overview on the past, present and future, costs were calculated for 1995, 2005 and 2020.

6 types of cars were investigated, divided by fuel type (petrol or diesel) and cylinder capacity (<1400cc, 1400-2000cc, >2000cc). The all-inclusive cost per driven kilometre varies between 0.225€ for a small Czech diesel car and 0.641€ for a large petrol car in France.

Mobility contributes strongly to the economical and social developments of every individual. The costs of mobility are increasing, especially the costs of driving a car. The increase of these costs would be caused by rising fuel prices, but also new measures to fight congestion are causing the costs to rise. Another cost factor are the emission and safety regulations.

The most important trends are:

- Fuel: diesel cars are traditionally more expensive in purchase, but cheaper in use than petrol cars. Up till now, this was sufficient to make diesel more interesting, but, with rising fuel prices, this advantage is at risk and could bring petrol cars more on the forefront. CO2 regulations ensure that fuel consumption will decrease. However, based on our careful forecasts, our analysis shows that this will not be enough to decrease the share of fuel expenses in the total budget.
- Taxation: taxes are more and more regulated based on the emissions of cars. Less fixed and more variable taxations lie within the expectations, and are appropriate within the framework of the internalization of external costs. The current tax burden on cars lies between 33% and 37%. This is expected to decrease slightly in the future, especially due to the expected increase of other expenses (see previous and next bullet). Unifying tax systems is very important in the striving towards a unified market.
- Regulations: at this moment, EURO standards and safety regulations are responsible for a price increase of 2000-2300€. The future, stricter standards that have already been approved by legislators will cost another 1000-1500€ extra / car. This represents an incremental cost of about 6% over the total use time of the car.


From 2007 to 2008


European Automobile Manufacturers Association (ACEA)



Our team

Griet De Ceuster, Tim Breemersch, Bart Van Herbruggen
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