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Carshare will have 12 million members worldwide by 2020

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The carsharing industry has seen dramatic growth from 2008-2013 and now there are 2.3 million members using the services worldwide. As more people look to alternatives to car ownership in the coming years that number is only expected to increase.

According to a new report from Navigant Research there will be more than 12 million members of carsharing services worldwide by 2020.

While carsharing services are growing worldwide, the report points to perceived inconveniences of not owning a car and the attitude of cars as status symbols as barriers to growth. And, most importantly according to the report, "this market is constrained by the ability of carsharing companies to achieve sufficient revenue per vehicle in order to create a sustainable, profitable business."

Of course, they're also constrained geographically. Carsharing is limited to dense, urban places where owning a car is optional. Expanding to car-dependent cities and suburbs isn't really an option, at least not a profitable one.

Still, the revenue from carsharing is expected to grow from around $1 billion this year to $6.2 billion in 2020. However, the report warns, "continued growth is not a given."

Photo: Flickr/ehpien

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— By on August 22, 2013, 6:29 AM PST

Tyler Falk

Contributing Editor

Tyler Falk is a freelance journalist based in Washington, D.C. Previously, he was with Smart Growth America and Grist. He holds a degree from Goshen College. Follow him on Twitter. Disclosure