This is a selection of the most interesting bicycle statistics and facts out there. It includes statistics from fields like traffic accidents, environment, economics, health, transportation, and e-bikes. As a bonus, I included some interesting facts about Tour de France.
Let’s dive right in!
It is estimated that there are more than 1 billion bicycles in the world. Around 450 million of them are in China, and about 100 million in the USA. (Statista)
Globally, 42% of households own at least one bicycle (580 million or more bicycles). (The Johns Hopkins University)
Cyclists logged 8.1 billion miles (13.04 billion km) with 400 billion feet (121.92 billion meters) of elevation gain on Strava in 2020. (Strava)
The world produced more than 130 million bikes in 2007. (Worldwatch Institute)
According to Fietsersbond, there are more than 18 million bikes in the Netherlands. That’s an average of 1.3 bikes per Dutch. (Fietsersbond)
TIP: Find out how many bikes were produced this year (or day) using this tool by Worldometers.
857 bicyclists were killed in traffic crashes in the US in 2018. This was the highest number since 1990. It accounted for 2.3% of all traffic fatalities (compared to 2.2% in 2018 and 1.9% in 2009). (NHTSA)
79% of the 857 bicyclists were killed in urban areas, while in rural areas, only 21%. 50% of these fatalities happened in the dark, 46% in daylight, 2% in the dawn, and 2% in dusk conditions. (NHTSA)
The chart below shows the number of bicyclists killed in traffic in selected countries. (Data sources: CARE database, NHTSA)
While bicyclist deaths of people under 20 years decline almost every year from 1975, the trend for people above 20 is the exact opposite. Sixty-two percent of bicyclists killed in 2019 were not wearing helmets. Helmet use was unknown for 23%. (IIHS)
According to Adventure Cycling Association, bicycling could save 6 to 14 million tons of CO2 and 700 million to 1.6 billion gallons (2.65 to 6.05 billion liters) of fuel each year. (Adventure Cycling)
Around 8,887g of CO2 emissions is produced by created by burning one gallon of fuel. (EPA)
Transportation accounted for 29% of total greenhouse gas emissions in 2019. (EPA)
Cycling brings an estimate of 0.6–5.6 billion EUR (0.73–6.81 billion USD) on CO2 emission savings per year. This accounts for 16 million tons of CO2 equivalents. (ECF) For context, the USA produced 4,571 million metric tons of CO2 emissions in 2020. (Statista)
The estimated savings on noise pollution reduction are 0.3 billion EUR (0.36 billion USD) per year thanks to cycling. (ECF)
A study of a public bike-sharing program, Bicing, in Barcelona, which had 191,982 subscribers in 2011, showed that the CO2 emissions were reduced by about 9 million kg per year and that bicycle sharing initiatives have greater health benefits than the risks. (Center for Research in Environmental Epidemiology)
The average number of bicycles sold in the US from 1992 to 2015 was 17.4 million a year. The lowest year was 2009 with 14.9 million, and the highest was 2000 with 20.9 million bicycles sold. (Statista)
The average number of bicycles sold in the EU from 2000 to 2016 was 19.9 million a year. The lowest year was 2001 with 17.745 million, and the highest was 2007 with 21.344 million bicycles sold. (Statista)
The average number of bicycles sold in China from 2011 to 2015 was 58.87 million a year. The lowest year was 2015 with 55.41 million, and the highest was 2014 with 62.11 million bicycles sold. (Statista)
According to ECF, cycling produces global benefits of 150 billion EUR (182.4 billion USD) per year. This includes positive externalities for the environment, public health, and the mobility system. (ECF)
In 2019, EU Member States exported almost 1 million bicycles and other cycles to countries outside the EU. Over the same period, they imported over 5 million bicycles from countries outside the EU. (Eurostat)
Portugal is European Union’s main bicycle exporter, accounting for 15% of all bicycles exported in 2016, followed by Italy (14%) and the Netherlands (13%). (Eurostat)
It is estimated that the global bicycle market will reach 82.3 billion USD by the year 2027. (Research and Markets)
The 3 most represented brands in the US bicycle shops in 2011 were Trek/Fisher with 22.5%, Giant with 10.5%, and Specialized with 9.5%. (Statista)
The highest average bicycle price in 2016 was in the Netherlands (1,010 EUR), the 2nd highest in Denmark at 700 EUR, and the 3rd highest in Austria at 660 EUR. (Statista)
The global bicycle market should increase from 45.08 million USD in 2016 to 62.00 million USD in 2024. (Statista)
The estimated size of the US bicycle market was 5.8 billion USD in 2004, and 6.2 billion USD in 2015. (Statista)
According to Transportation Research Procedia research, more than 650,000 jobs were linked to cycling in the EU in 2016, and more than 400,000 could be created by doubling the cycling modal share. (TML)
Around 99% of bicycles sold in the United States are imported from China and Taiwan. (Statista)
The average annual expenditure on bicycles of a US household was 23.85 USD in 2019. (Statista)
The best-paid pro cyclist is Peter Sagan, with his 6 million EUR contract with Bora-Hansgrohe from 2018. The second-highest-paid pro cyclist is Chris Froome, with a 5.5 million EUR contract with Israel Start-Up Nation for the 2021 season. (ProCyclingUK)
Bicycling to work lowers the risk of cardiovascular diseases among middle‐aged adults. (JAHA)
The more often people cycle to work and the longer the distance traveled, the less they report sick. (TNO Quality of Life)
A study by Environmental Health Perspectives claims the estimated health benefits of cycling were on average substantially larger than the risks relative to car driving for individuals shifting their mode of transport. (University of Utrecht)
A study of more than 30,000 women showed that women who commute, walk, or bicycle to work 30 min or more daily had a slightly lower adjusted risk of breast cancer than women working at home, being unemployed, or driving a car to the workplace. (National Public Health Institute)
This study of 5,106 men and women from Copenhagen who were followed for an average of 18 years showed that intensive cycling is better in the prevention of coronary heart disease than slow cycling. Men with fast intensity cycling survived 5.3 years longer, and men with average intensity 2.9 years longer than men with slow cycling intensity. For women, the figures were 3.9 and 2.2 years longer, respectively. (The Copenhagen City Heart Study)
A study conducted in Amsterdam showed that cyclists inhaled slightly more CO, about 3 times fewer air pollutants like benzene, toluene, xylenes, and about 4 times more NO2 than car drivers during 2 days testing period. (Municipal Health Service)
The Aging Cells’ study assessed immune profiles of 125 adults (55-79 years) who maintained a high level of physical activity (cycling). Compared with their less active counterparts, the cyclists had significantly higher serum levels of the thymoprotective cytokine IL‐7 and lower IL‐6, which promotes thymic atrophy. (Anatomical Society)
TIP: You might also be interested in these scientifically-proven benefits of cycling.
According to Copenhagenize, Copenhagen (DK) was the most bike-friendly city, followed by Amsterdam (NL), and Utrecht (NL) in 2019. (Copenhagenize)
New York was the most expensive city for 2-hour off-street parking in 2019, at an average of 34.94 USD. This was 27.6% more than in the second most expensive city, Sydney (27.37 USD). (Parkopedia)
According to the INRIX study, parking is the highest indirect/hidden cost of driving. It made up nearly 45% of the total cost of ownership in the USA in 2017. (INRIX)
In 1995, Bicycle trips in the US were done for work commuting (9%), shopping (12.7%), personal (12.5%), social or recreational (57%), and school (8.8%) purposes. (VTPI) NHTS study showed that commuting to work increased to 10.9% from all bicycle trip purposes in 2009. (NHTS)
In some urban areas like central London, people cycled 6 times more in 2018 than in 1977. (DfT UK)
People in England made 16 bicycle trips on average per person in 2019 with an average trip length of 3.3 miles (5.3 km). This is almost 24 times fewer trips than the number of trips of car/van drivers (380 per year in 2019). (DfT UK)
Men made on average three times more bicycle trips than women in England in 2019. (DfT UK)
People in the UK took 5% fewer bike trips per year in 2018 than in 2002. (DfT UK)
Only 1% of all road traffic (vehicle miles) was ridden by cyclists in Great Britain in 2019. (DfT UK)
The e-bike market was valued at 23.89 billion USD in 2020. The market is expected to witness a compound annual growth rate of 11.86% during the forecast period, 2021–2026. This translates to a 46 billion USD industry in 2026. (Mordor Intelligence)
In 2019, EU Member States exported 191,900 e-bikes to countries outside the EU. Over the same period, they imported 703,900 million e-bikes from countries outside the EU. (Eurostat)
About 11.78 million e-bikes were sold in China in 2010. This number grew by 34% to 15.83 million in 2020. (Statista)
Bicycle and e-bike sales more than tripled in Germany between 2013 and 2020 (from 1.98 to 6.44 billion EUR). (Statista)
According to the NITC study, almost 29% of people decided to buy an e-bike because of a physical limitation for riding a standard bicycle. (NITC)
Tour de France Stats
The fastest TdF was won at an average speed of 25.9mph (41.7km/h) in 2005. (Wikipedia)
The slowest TdF was won at an average speed of 14.98mph (24.1km/h) in 1919. (Wikipedia)
The longest TdF was the 20th edition 3,569.78 miles (5,745 km) in 1926. (Wikipedia)
The longest TdF stage was the 5th stage of the 1919 edition. It measured 299.5 miles (482 km), and it took the winner Jean Alavoine 18 hours and 54 minutes to complete. (Wikipedia)
The shortest TdF stage (excluding time trial stages) was the 15th stage of the 1971 edition. It was 12.18 miles (19.6 km) long. (Wikipedia)
That’s all from my selection of the best bicycle statistics.
As someone that enjoys cycling and numbers, I really enjoyed researching and finding these interesting stats and facts.
What is your favorite bicycling stat? Let me know in the comments below. Feel free to get in touch if you have a suggestion for some interesting stats that I missed.
This post is regularly updated to provide you with the most up-to-date statistics. If you find stats that are not up to date, please, contact me.