Austrians own more than 4.5 million cars, it was announced yesterday (Mon).
Statistic agency Statistik Austria said the number of registered vehicles surpassed 4.5 million for the first time in history. Around 4.51 million cars are registered for usage in the alpine country at the moment, according to the agency which recorded a 1.6 per cent increase of car ownership from 2011 to 2012.
Statistik Austria said that almost a third of all cars Austrians currently own are more than 10 years old. Austrian car dealers look back on a record year of sales. More than 356,000 cars were bought in the country in 2011, up by 8.4 per cent compared to 2010 which was the previous record year for vehicle sales. Volkswagen (VW) has been Austrians’ favourite brand for years. The German company, which has its headquarters in Wolfsburg, sold 65,000 cars in Austria in 2011. The booming car maker’s rival finished in second place in Austria in 2011 thanks to 26,000 sales.
The Austrian Traffic Club (VCÖ) found that there are the most cars per residents in Burgenland. VCÖ studies show that there are 616 vehicles per 1,000 inhabitants in the small province located in the east of the country. Lower Austrians own many cars as well (610). Tyrol (505) and Vienna find themselves on the other side of the ranking. Households owning cars are least common in the capital city where 394 cars per 1,000 residents are registered.
The Viennese government coalition said last week it decided to actively support a company’s car sharing project to help raise the public’s attention on such offers. Several firms are engaged in car sharing initiatives in Vienna at the moment. Demand for such services is reportedly on the rise but still low in international comparison. Now the Social Democrats (SPÖ) and their coalition partner, the Viennese Green Party, said Denzel’s car sharing affiliate was now allowed to use public parking spaces in Josefstadt district for free. Charges will apply again in three years, according to Rüdiger Maresch of the Green Party which cooperates with the SPÖ in city hall since 2010.
The VCÖ appealed to the Viennese government to support the current renaissance of walking as well. The organisation claimed that the number of people opting to walk instead of using cars was on the rise. VCÖ experts suggested to broaden sidewalks, increase the number of benches and traffic-free zones in a possible master plan for more walking in urban areas.
Cycling and the demand in public transport services are on the rise as well, according to the VCÖ. The association, which promotes eco-friendly traffic decision-making, said Vienna and other industrialised areas should consider setting up road tolls for city centres to support the trend and do something against their worrying fine dust and carbon emission statistics.
Wiener Linien presented an own initiative against more toxic emissions at the weekend. The Viennese public transport company said it was optimistic about improving its carbon footprint by spending more than 10 million Euros on its tramways’ technology. The firm explained that the steering system of 120 trams would be replaced with new versions which provide the public transport network with electricity when tram drivers slow down their vehicles.