IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Dimensions of automobile demand: an overview of an Australian research project


  • D A Hensher


The major objective of the study of the dimensions of automobile demand (1981 - 1988) is to obtain reliable forecasts of the variables which drive the fundamental energy equation: energy consumed (litres) = efficiency of technology (litres per 100 kilometres) x utilisation rate (kilometres per period). Since the level of utilisation is unlikely to be independent of the state of technology, and since both dimensions are conditioned by the state of the economy and the nature of households as well as by the extent of corporate-sector support to the household sector, it is necessary to view the levels of vehicle usage and vehicle fuel efficiency as outputs of the broader household decision process. This broader context can be represented by a study of the household's choice of automobiles (by number and composition) and level of utilisation. This perspective enables us to view vehicle efficiency and utilisation as derivatives of a study of the household's demand for mobility services, which is derived from the demand for end activities (consumption of goods and leisure). Since we are especially interested in the role of fuel prices and vehicle technology in the household's decision on the level of vehicle utilisation, it is desirable to monitor the response path of a sample of households over a period of time. A single cross-section approach cannot identify the influence of changing fuel prices on vehicle use, nor can it adequately accommodate the temporal relationship between vehicle purchase/disposal decision and the utilisation rate. To represent satisfactorily the role of policy variables (for example, fuel prices, taxes associated with vehicle possession, standards for vehicle technology) in the context of the wider set of influences on household automobile possession and usage, the study members have developed an econometric model system which jointly models the household's choice of vehicles and utilisation level over the period 1981 - 1985. This paper provides an overview of the theoretical, methodological, and empirical dimensions of the project and, where appropriate, introduces some preliminary findings. The project in its entirety is due for completion in late 1988.

Suggested Citation

  • D A Hensher, 1986. "Dimensions of automobile demand: an overview of an Australian research project," Environment and Planning A, Pion Ltd, London, vol. 18(10), pages 1339-1374, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:pio:envira:v:18:y:1986:i:10:p:1339-1374

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    File Function: abstract
    Download Restriction: Fulltext access restricted to subscribers, see for details

    File URL:
    File Function: main text
    Download Restriction: Fulltext access restricted to subscribers, see for details

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Golob, Thomas F. & Golob, Jacqueline M., 1989. "Practical Consideration in the Development of a Transit Users Panel," University of California Transportation Center, Working Papers qt56q060sc, University of California Transportation Center.
    2. Kenneth A. Small & Kurt Van Dender, 2007. "Fuel Efficiency and Motor Vehicle Travel: The Declining Rebound Effect," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 1), pages 25-52.
    3. Golob, Thomas F. & Golob, Jacqueline M., 1989. "Practical Considerations in the Development of a Transit Users Panel," University of California Transportation Center, Working Papers qt2053v9mz, University of California Transportation Center.

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:pio:envira:v:18:y:1986:i:10:p:1339-1374. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Neil Hammond). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.