Car fleet growing faster than population

As of January 2020, the passenger car fleet in the Netherlands stood at nearly 8.7 million. This is 1.7 percent up on one year previously. The number of passenger cars has increased at a faster pace than the adult population (aged 18 and over). There are over 7.6 million privately owned versus 1 million company-owned cars. Statistics Netherlands (CBS) reports this based on new figures on the passenger car fleet.

Passenger car fleet in the Netherlands, 1 January (x million)
CategoriesCompany-ownedPrivately-owned
20150.877.11
20160.917.19
20170.937.30
20180.957.42
20190.997.54
20201.047.64
Source: CBS, RDW

The number of privately owned cars rose by 102 thousand (1.4 percent) on January 2019. Over the course of last year, the company car fleet grew by almost 45 thousand (4.5 percent); it now exceeds 1 million for the first time. Relative to five years previously, there are 7.5 percent more private cars against 19.1 percent more company cars.

Over 1 car for every 2 persons

In January 2020, there were over 7.6 million privately owned passenger cars in the Netherlands. This is equivalent to 543 cars per thousand inhabitants aged 18 years and over. This was still 528 per thousand at the start of 2015. The car ownership rate is highest in the group aged 50 to 64 years: 679 cars per thousand inhabitants. Car ownership is lowest among 18 to 24-year-olds at 172 cars per thousand inhabitants. In comparison, car ownership is over twice as high among the over-80s.

Car ownership rates, by age, 1 January (per thousand inhabitants)
Categories18 to 24 yrs25 to 29 yrs30 to 49 yrs50 to 64 yrs65 to 79 yrs80 yrs and over
2015175436585643575324
2016174434584648581335
2017175436585654586346
2018176437587663592356
2019174436588671597367
2020*172433585679602375
Source: CBS, RDW

More elderly car owners

Over the past five years, car ownership has risen most significantly among the over-80s. The ownership rate stood at 324 cars per thousand inhabitants in January 2015; this had gone up to 375 by January 2020.
Among drivers under the age of 30, car ownership is slightly lower this year at 283 cars per thousand inhabitants compared to five years previously. This decline, set against the growing number of people in this age group, means that their share in car ownership remained virtually unchanged: both in January 2015 and in January 2020, the under-30s owned 10 percent of all private cars.
The over-80s own 9 percent of all private cars. This was 7 percent five years previously. As for the group aged 30 to 64 years, they own 65 percent.

Car ownership rates, by age, 1 January 2020*
Categories1 January 2020*
18 to 24 yrs3
25 to 29 yrs7
30 to 49 yrs33
50 to 64 yrs32
65 to 79 yrs21
80 yrs and over4
Source: CBS, RDW