In Australia, the bicycle is king

This statistic astounds me, but bicycle sales extended their lead over new car sales in Australia during 2006. Australia's peak bicycle promotion group, the Cycling Promotion Fund (CPF), says that 1,273,781 new bikes were sold last year, 32 percent more than new car and truck sales totalling 962,521. This is the fifth straight year that bike sales have surpassed one million-plus units.

Is this move towards pedal power a response to rising petrol prices? The CPF seems to think so with spokesman Ian Christie saying that Australians were using bikes not just for recreation but increasingly as their preferred form of day-to-day transport. "There is an emerging trend towards people using bikes as their official company-supplied vehicle in place of the traditional company car." he said.

"Some of Australia's biggest corporations now have bicycle fleets, and when you add in government organisations, we now know of at least 50 organisations which operate fleets of bikes."


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