National Survey on Carsharing in France – Edition 2016 –


Conducted in 2012, the first edition of the National Survey on Carsharing was the first large-scale survey on the users, uses and impacts of carsharing in France. Conducted with 2090 users who subscribed to 20 different carsharing services, it showed the “triggering multimodality effect” of round trip carsharing: carsharing allowed the inhabitants of cities to free themselves of their personal car, discover and adopt other modes of transportation.

Four years later, does carsharing still play the same role in urban mobility? Are its users still the same? Have its uses or its impacts changed?

Similar to the 2012 edition, the 2016 edition focuses primarily on round-trip carsharing. This study has two key objectives:

  • Update the results of the first edition : have the users, uses and impacts of carsharing evolved between 2012 and 2016?
  • Better understand the users, uses and impacts of carsharing : in particular, who are carsharing users? Once registered to carsharing, do their travelling practices change in the same way? What are the uses and impacts of carsharing among private individuals and carsharing in professional contexts?

Methodology of the National Survey on Carsharing, 2016

For this 2016 edition, 4 quantitative online surveys were carried out :

  • A large survey of 2 061 round-trip carsharing users;
  • A follow-up survey of 276 persons who had already responded to the 2012 survey;
  • A survey of 158 vehicle fleet managers working within companies, local authorities or associations;
  • A survey of 83 users of the carsharing service among private individuals, Koolicar.

The quantitative surveys were supplemented by a qualitative survey through interviews with 25 carsharing users and former users in order to better understand how the use of carsharing intervenes in their life paths and by what means it encourages change in traveling practices.
These surveys were distributed by the carsharing operators Citiz, Communauto, Koolicar, Ubeeqo to their users.

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Key results

  • Round-trip carsharing : a diversity of paths but a socio-economic profile that is still very consistent

The first National Survey on Carsharing thoroughly described the profile of users and the impact of carsharing on their modal practices. This study describes the paths of users in their diversity.

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Although the users’ paths and their mobility behaviors differ, their socio-economic profile shows that carsharing remains a niche market, with a wide overrepresentation of people who are rather elderly, financially well-off and highly qualified compared to the population of the large French cities in which they reside (carsharing services are mainly available in large metropolitan areas). Furthermore, the specificity of carsharing users is tending to increase since their average age and their level of income has increased since 2012.

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  • Can round-trip carsharing trigger long-term multimodality?

The users in 2016 appear to have less changed their mobility behaviors after having adopted carsharing than those interviewed at the time of the 2012 survey. It would be tempting to conclude that carsharing in 2016 is less an «alternative mobility trigger» than in 2012. However, the differences between the 2012 and 2016 surveys may be due to multiple factors: development of modes based on shared cars (ridehailing cars, carpooling) to the detriment of “classic” car alternatives (public transport,cycling), a partial return to the personal car, the forgetting of practices before carsharing leading to an underassessment of the change in behaviors.

Moreover, carsharing caused the same decrease in automotive equipment in 2016 than in 2012. Its environmental relevance as well as the decrease in the place occupied by cars in cities therefore remains considerable. In 2016, one carsharing vehicle replaced:

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To go further

This research led to the publication of reports and one executive summary that can be downloaded for free below.


For more information about the full reports (in French) :

Photo source: Citiz, 2015

A project sheet is available

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