The Rise of Shared Mobility Examining the Growth of Car-sharing

As consumers embrace access over ownership, different types of non-ownership alternatives are growing in popularity. These shared mobility modalities include car-sharing, ride sharing, micromobility (lightweight transportation for individual use), on-demand ride services, and dynamic shuttles.

These modalities may be station based, where vehicles are returned to designated locations (stations), or free-floating. They also include peer-to-peer car-sharing and urban aerial mobility (UAM).

Increased Access to Vehicles

Many people are turning to shared mobility as a means of getting around. These services offer a variety of vehicles that can be used on demand. This makes it easy to avoid car ownership or costly rental fees.

These services also provide convenience and flexibility. Those who use them save on expenses such as gas, insurance, and maintenance costs. They also have the added benefit of safety and security.

Several studies have shown that various shared mobility modes reduce the need for personal cars, reducing congestion and emissions. This can be beneficial for inner city areas that are struggling with traffic problems. It also reduces the need to continuously expand road networks, saving money. In addition, it cuts down on the number of vehicles sitting idle in parking lots or on the streets.

Lower Gas Prices

Shared mobility allows consumers to avoid paying high gas prices for personal vehicles. In addition, these services reduce the amount of space needed for parking, reducing congestion and improving air quality.

The shared mobility market is projected to reach $1 trillion by 2030. This growth is driven by the emergence of on-demand ride services, which provide users with the flexibility to use any vehicle from their mobile devices and pay service fees as needed.

The market for on-demand mobility currently consists of three main segments: car sharing, vehicle rental/leasing, and ride sourcing. In 2019, e-hailing accounted for the majority of this market, generating $130 billion to $140 billion in consumer spending. Car sharing and peer-to-peer car sharing each accounted for less than 10% of the market.

Reduced Carbon Footprint

The growing popularity of shared mobility is a result of environmental, energy, and economic concerns that are driving consumers to seek out sustainable transportation alternatives. From ride hailing and car-sharing to robo-taxis and e-bikes, shared mobility provides an alternative to personal vehicles that offers many advantages for cities, businesses, and individuals.

Car-sharing reduces the carbon footprint of transport significantly – by up to 85 % for B2C and P2P car sharing users. However, the overall footprint increases slightly as the re-spending of the car-sharing savings on other consumption sectors with high income elasticities – such as food, furniture and household goods and services – lead to increased transport emissions (Fig. 8).

By reducing private car ownership and increasing the use of other modes of transportation, such as public transit and cycling, the environment is improved by decreasing air pollutants and cutting down on congestion.

Increased Safety

The growth of shared mobility has been driven by societal changes that make people more comfortable using technology to get around. These include the widespread adoption of smartphones, which has made it easier to access new mobility solutions and use them as a convenient alternative to owning a vehicle.

Consumers are also growing more accustomed to paying for services on the go. This makes it easy to buy a car-sharing membership with the swipe of a phone and can provide added convenience for those who travel frequently or for long periods.

The most established modes on the shared mobility menu are ridesharing, carpooling and vanpooling, as well as bike sharing and public transit. These options help to efficiently move groups of people with similar origins and destinations while minimizing costs.


With on-demand services, users can easily access shared mobility options via a mobile application. They can also choose from various service tiers, payment methods, and even rate the quality of service.

This convenience helps to increase the accessibility and ease of use of shared mobility modalities, thereby decreasing the barriers for consumers to adopt them. Additionally, sharing a vehicle eliminates the need for drivers to purchase and maintain their own personal vehicles.

Shared mobility offers a number of benefits for all stakeholders involved, including savings and increased safety. Ultimately, it can help reduce dependence on private cars and promote sustainability in cities worldwide. More research on the impacts of shared mobility, however, is needed at a city level to fully understand its effects. See the full episode of ASCE Interchange here.

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