Ninety-two percent of American families had at least one car, according to the most recent U.S. Census poll. This means that for the majority of Americans, paying for vehicle insurance is still an essential expense because it is mandated in almost every state.
In order to provide additional context on the situation of car ownership in 2023, here is a thorough analysis of the most recent car ownership statistics on how many cars are there in the US.
Car Ownership Statistics and Facts
The proportion of families without access to a car fell by 0.5% between 2020 and 2021. (US Census)
According to the most recent information available, there are 275,913,237 personal and commercial vehicles registered to drivers in the United States. (FHWA, the Federal Highway Administration)
Due to their size and populations, California, Texas, Florida, West Virginia, New York, and Pennsylvania have the most vehicles registered. The states with the fewest vehicle registrations are Washington, D.C., Wyoming, Wyoming, Alaska, North Dakota, and Vermont. (FHWA)
Drivers in the U.S. had a combined 278,063,737 personal and commercial vehicles registered to them in 2021.
With 166,079,082 private and commercial truck registrations in 2021 compared to 101,601,344 vehicle registrations for automobiles, trucks are the most common vehicle category.
A rising trend in the latest car ownership statistics may be seen in the United States, where the number of registered vehicles climbed by 3.66% between 2017 and 2021.
Only 8% of American households fall under the category of lowest vehicle ownership range according to the most recent census study. (US Census)
The majority of Americans possess at least one automobile, while 21.9 percent have three or more cars, with 37.1 percent having two cars. (US Census)
In 2022, the typical American traveled 13,476 miles annually. (FHWA)
Male drivers tend to drive more than female drivers; on average, male drivers log 16,550 miles annually, compared to female drivers’ 10,142 miles. (FHWA)
According to the National Automobile Dealers Association, sales of electric cars (EVs), plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, and hybrid electric vehicles accounted for 12.3% of all new vehicles sold in 2022, an increase of 2.7 percentage points from 2021.
Young drivers between the ages of 16 and 19 and senior drivers over the age of 65 traveled around 7,600 kilometers annually on average. (FHWA)
In June 2022, there were 4.8 billion fewer vehicle miles driven on highways and streets than there were in June 2021. (FHWA)
Western states saw the largest drop in miles traveled, which was 3.0 percent, or 62.5 billion miles, in June 2022 compared to June 2021. (FHWA)
With 96.2% of households in both states having access to at least one vehicle in 2021, Idaho and Wyoming shared the title of states with the highest percentage of automobile ownership in the US.
The majority of those who possess three or more cars are from Wyoming (33.5%), followed by Utah (32.3%).
Based on car sales in 2022, the Ford motor company F-Series will continue to be the most popular car model countrywide.
How Much Cars Are Present In US?
According to the latest recent data, there are currently 275,913,237 total registered vehicles in the United States, including 105,135,300 cars. Truck ownership is higher in the US than that in any other vehicle class, with automobiles trailing behind motorbike and bus ownership.
U.S. Private and Commercial Ownership By Vehicle Type (FHWA)
Vehicle ownership: 103,796,315
Motor vehicle registrations: 8,298,394
More than 272.4 million privately owned automobiles outnumber the fewer than 4.1 million controlled by the government. The almost 276 million automobiles possessed in the United States are made up of both public and private vehicles.
City Wise Data On Car Ownership
Depending on where you reside in the United States, different percentages of people own cars. The data below was taken from the American Community Survey data from the US Census for 2021. Due to urban expansion and the requirement of a car for daily living, automobile ownership is greater outside of U.S. metropolitan regions.
Type Wise Car Ownership in the US (FHWA)
Private and commercial
Publicly owned number of vehicles
Total motor vehicles
State-Wise Data On Car Ownership
States have vastly different rates of automobile ownership. Based on the most recent data from 2020, the Office of Highway Policy Information of the Federal Highway Administration provides the most recent highway statistics.
California, Texas, and Florida are some of the states in the U.S. with the largest populations and the greatest number of registered light vehicles. As a result, some of the smallest states in the union, such as Alaska, Wyoming, and Vermont, also have the lowest rates of automobile ownership.
U.S. Metro Areas with the Highest Car Ownership Rates
Percentage of most households that own vehicles
Twin Falls, ID
St. George, UT
Boise City, ID
Rockingham County-Strafford County, NH
Hilton Head Island-Bluffton, SC
Due to easy access to public transit and the high expense of parking your automobile in these places, several of America’s largest metropolitan regions have the lowest rates of vehicle ownership in the country. The metro regions of New York, Newark, and Jersey City have the lowest proportion of households with a vehicle, followed by those of Philadelphia, San Francisco, and Boston.
10 American Metropolitan Areas with the Lowest Percentage of Vehicle Ownership
Percentage of households that own vehicles
New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA
San Francisco-San Mateo-Redwood City, CA Metro Division; San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
Boston, MA Metro Division; Boston-Cambridge-Newton, MA-NH Metro Area
Chicago-Naperville-Evanston, IL Metro Division; Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, IL-IN-WI Metro Area
Atlantic City-Hammonton, NJ Metro Area
Ithaca, NY Metro Area
Detroit-Dearborn-Livonia, MI Metro Division; Detroit-Warren-Dearborn, MI Metro Area
Buffalo-Cheektowaga, NY Metro Area
Binghamton, NY Metro Area
Cost Of Owning A Car
Regardless of automotive value, owning a car comes with a variety of costs, and due to growing inflation, owning a car is now far more expensive than it was in the past.
Costs of parts and labor are still rising in the midst of high inflation and supply chain constraints. Policyholders may see higher auto insurance prices as a result of the insurance industry taking these expenses into account. The average person spends 2.93 percent of their income on this required expense, which now costs $2,014 per year on average (up from $1,771 in 2022).
Full Coverage Car Insurance
Average cost per year
$2,014 for full coverage
How Many People in America Drive Cars?
According to research on the five-year period between 2017 and 2021, car ownership is increasing overall. Over time, fewer households have two vehicles on the road. In the meanwhile, the number of households with three or more vehicles has steadily increased.
There is compelling evidence that as American households expand in size, more automobiles are needed to support them. The numbers also show a growth in regular income, which enables Americans to pay for three or more vehicles, as well as the price of maintenance and insurance.
However, it might provide a number of difficulties for Americans without a car. Living far from city transportation lines can make it extremely difficult for some people to travel to jobs, school, and appointments. Given the hectic schedules of youngsters, families with children may face even higher obligations.
Purchasing A Car Outside Of The US
Looking at the remainder of the globe, worldwide car sales fell slightly from the 66.7 million number of vehicles sold in 2021 to 66.1 million in 2022.
China is the only nation that sells more cars than the United States. More than 26 million passenger cars were sold worldwide in 2021, accounting for 31.4% of all sales.
Additionally, Chinese automakers increased their market share to 44.4 percent domestically in 2021, surpassing the previous great domination of foreign automakers in the Chinese market.
The Democratic Republic of the Congo has the lowest proportion of new car owners, with just one vehicle per every 250 citizens.
The market for electric vehicles is anticipated to expand in the years to come. EV sales worldwide might reach 7.4% of total sales by 2025. Internal combustion cars may account for only 20% of sales by 2025, with EVs dominating the market with an 80% market share.
Hybrid and Electric Cars On The Road
According to the Argonne National Laboratory in 2020, there were more than a million EVs (Electric Vehicle) on American roads. Global sales of electric vehicles topped 2.1 million alone in 2019 (IEA, 2020). The move to this kind of future car appears to be continuing.
In fact, according to Edison Electric Institute’s 2018 forecast, the number of EVs will reach 18.7 million by 2030.
To meet consumer demand, automakers have begun creating more EV vehicles. BEVs (Battery Electric Vehicles) and PHEVs (Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles) are the two most well-known types.
There have been a number of brands and models on the market. However, Tesla still has the largest market share (78%), accounting for all EV sales in the US. It is also one of the biggest car manufacturers in the USA.
Several procedures must be put in place in anticipation of the market for electric vehicles expanding as predicted. For instance, manufacturers would need to install around 9.6 million charge outlets in homes, workplaces, and public spaces in order to meet the 18.7 million EV forecast for 2030. In terms of EV charging infrastructure, this is a significant investment.
Trends Affecting the Automotive Industry
The progress of the automobile sector is significantly influenced by the current state of technology. It may have an impact on the development of new passenger vehicles as well as their manufacture, sale, and other aspects of innovation.
This means that one must stay current with emerging technological trends in order to track and foresee changes in the industry. This is especially true of contemporary methods used in vehicle design.
For instance, the development of driverless cars will be aided by the widespread proliferation of the Internet of Things-connected gadgets. The worldwide connected leading car manufacturers are anticipated to reach $166 billion by 2025 (Markets and Markets, 2020), with 28.5 million number of vehicles sold in 2019 having telematics integration (BNEF, 2020); this increase will eventually be supported by technical developments in manufacturing.
The production process may be greatly streamlined if robot adoption reached a higher level. Additionally, artificial intelligence has been simplifying life for both producers and customers.
The automotive AI market topped $1 billion in 2019 and is projected to expand at a CAGR of more than 35% through 2026 because of features including driver assistance, autonomous guided cars, infotainment control, and more (Global Market Insights, 2019).