PHOTO CAPTION: Rome has also introduced bikesharing.

Bicycles Outsell Cars in Italy For First Time Since WW II

1,750,000 bikes were bought in 2011 in Italy compares to 1,748,000 motor vehicles in wake of austerity program and economic problems.

Published: 08-Oct-2012

For the first time since the end of the Second World War the number of bicycles sold in Italy has overtaken the number of cars.

In a radical departure for the car-mad country, home to legendary marques such as Fiat, Ferrari and Lamborghini, 1,750,000 bikes were bought in 2011 compared to 1,748,000 motor vehicles.

As austerity cuts deepen and petrol prices hit a new high, the purchase of new cars has dropped to levels not seen since the 1970s.


Cities like Portland, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C. lead the nation in bicycling use.

Jay Walljasper suggests ways that American cities can encourage more cycling.

Nearly 70 percent of Americans' car trips are less than two miles long.

University of Wisconsin Madison study of north central US region found that short trips on bicycles could save approximately four trillion pounds of carbon dioxide emissions, 1,100 lives and $7 billion in mortality and health care costs.

Berlin, Germany street art depicting family on a bike.

BBC's Berlin bureau is considering buying a bike trailer for their recording equipment given the amazing boom in bicycling taking place in the unified German capital, where bicycle helmets are seldom seen.


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