Sunday, October 23, 2011

Little Red Corvette or Pink Cadillac?

Aviel Yelinek


In 2010 approximately 2.05 million private motor vehicles traversed Israel’s roads. Israel has a motorization rate of 267 private motor vehicles for every 1,000 residents, which is relatively low in comparison to other developed countries. Approximately 39% of vehicles in Israel were produced in Japan, 11% in South Korea, and 8% in Spain and in France (each). Interestingly, only about 4% of motor vehicles in Israel were produced in the United States. Among the private motor vehicles added to Israel’s roads in the past year, the highest relative proportion belonged to Mazda (16%). The company that came in second place was Hyundai (15%), and in third place was Toyota (11%).

The motorization rate and the average age of motor vehicles are usually indicators of a population’s socio-economic status. Typically, the higher a population’s socio-economic status is, the higher its motorization rate will be and the lower the average age of its motor vehicles will be.

The motorization rate in Jerusalem in 2009 measured 169 private motor vehicles per 1,000 persons, which was one of the lowest rates among the country’s cities. For the sake of comparison, the motorization rates in Be’er Sheva measured 198 vehicles per 1,000 persons. In Rishon LeZion this figure stood at 295, and for Haifa it was 321. The motorization rate in Tel Aviv was among the highest in the country, measuring 469 private motor vehicles for every 1,000 persons. As the graph shows, Jerusalem’s motorization rate is relatively low in comparison with its adjacent localities, excluding Beit Shemesh and the Haredi localities.

The data regarding the average age of private vehicles paint a similar picture. The average age of a private vehicle in Israel in 2009 was 6.9 years. The average age of a private vehicle in Jerusalem was the highest among major cities, measuring 8.3. The average age in Be’er Sheva was 7.2. In Rishon LeZion it was 7.0, and in Haifa it measured 6.2. The average age of motor vehicles in Tel Aviv was among the lowest in the country, measuring 4.8.