Changing mobility - new study reveals COVID-19 and climate protection impact

Germans love to walk, the Chinese adopt eletric mobility. Exciting insights in the new PwC Digital Auto Report.

As part of the IAA MOBILITY Sustainability Lounge, Strategy& and PwC presented the first part of the „Digital Auto Report 2021“ with exciting insights into the mobility behavior of people in Germany, the USA and China.

Corona has changed mobility worldwide. But how does this affect individual mobility behavior? Strategy& investigated this on three continents. The key finding: the majority of people are willing to change their personal mobility behavior in order to reduce CO2 emissions. In Germany, the figure is 70 percent, in China 97 percent and in the USA 52 percent. Despite a high level of willingness to reduce their own carbon footprint, people signal a pronounced affinity for individual transportation in the post-Corona era. In Germany alone, 44 percent of people want to buy a new car in the next 24 months - twice as many as a year ago. And just under half of Germans want to increasingly cover shorter distances on foot or by bike in the future. 

Twenty-six percent intend to completely avoid short-haul flights, and around one-fifth say they will switch from a combustion engine to an electric car for the sake of the environment. In China, on the other hand, over 60 percent want to switch to the alternative drive. While cars and bicycles emerge as clear winners from the pandemic, public transport is seen as a loser: despite the high relevance of integrated multimodal transport concepts, only seven percent are prepared to switch more to trains and buses. Sustainable mobility concepts such as bike or car sharing are also not as popular at present. The biggest obstacle to using sharing services or public transport is that prices are too high. 23 percent would also like to see better availability.