Peak Car?

Understanding Future US Demand for Cars

Is the US Approaching Peak Car?

Recent trends suggest a flattening of consumer demand for traditional car ownership:

  • Smaller numbers of requested driver's licenses
  • Declining per capita miles driven
  • US traffic congestion below its 2005 peak

At the same time, some early adopters are:

  • Car sharing with services like Zipcar
  • Opting for multimodal solutions
  • Embracing a totally carless lifestyle

What's Causing Today's Slack Demand?

Is it the (temporarily) weak economy? Or are attitudes toward traditional car ownership changing in fundamental ways? Will technology advances, demographic shifts, and other societal changes have long-term effects on car demand?

The Uncertainty of Car Demand Raises Critical Strategic Questions

  • Will the bulk of US auto companies' future revenue continue to be based on today's private-ownership, vehicle-centric models?
  • How fast will companies develop new business models to take advantage of alternative revenue streams?
  • How far and how fast will innovative practices like car sharing diffuse in US society?
  • What kinds of products and services should auto companies deliver in five to ten years?
  • What technologies will enable the products and services of the future?

Peak Car? The US Consumer Landscape

SBI's Peak Car? will paint a multidimensional picture of the current US automotive-consumer landscape—starting with consumer attitudes toward car ownership today and overlaying them with attitudes about advancing car features and the new business models they enable. Peak Car?'s comprehensive view will give stakeholders in the personal-transportation market a deeper understanding of whether, why, and when the US may reach peak car and the potential business opportunities that may result.

Sampling of Technologies, Features, and Business Models Peak Car? May Explore

  • What roles will cars play in consumers' daily lives?
  • What kinds of trade-offs might consumers make (for instance, decreased driver control for increased driving ease or safety)?
  • What are consumer attitudes toward alternatives to traditional models of car ownership, insurance, and 4-wheel car design?

For more information about Peak Car?, contact us at or +1 650 859 4600.