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Motor vehicles in Australia travelled an estimated 232,453 million kilometres in 2012.
Consistent with the population distribution, New South Wales had the largest share of total kilometres travelled (28.7%) and the largest number of registered vehicles.
Proportion of vehicles and total kilometres travelled, State/territory of registration-Year ended 30 June 2012
Motor vehicles registered in Australia travelled an average of 14,000 kilometres per vehicle in 2012. Vehicles registered in Queensland travelled the highest number of average kilometres (14,900 kilometres), while vehicles registered in Tasmania travelled the lowest number of average kilometres (11,600). Of all vehicle types, articulated trucks had the highest average kilometres (83,000).
Average kilometres travelled, Motor vehicles by state/territory of registration - Year ended 30 June 2012
Passenger vehicles accounted for 72.0% of the total distance travelled in 2012.
Of the total kilometres travelled by passenger vehicles in 2012, 52.7% was for personal and other use. The remaining kilometres travelled by passenger vehicles comprised travel to and from work (27.3%) and business use (19.9%).
Freight carrying vehicles accounted for 26.0% of the total kilometres travelled in 2012. Of the 60,355 million kilometres travelled by freight carrying vehicles, light commercial vehicles accounted for 72.4% of the kilometres travelled, followed by rigid trucks (15.3%) and articulated trucks (12.2%).
Total tonne-kilometres is the aggregation of the number of tonnes moved multiplied by the distance travelled in kilometres for each individual vehicle carrying freight.
In 2012, freight vehicles travelled 194, 033 million tonne-kilometres in Australia. Articulated trucks accounted for 77.8% (151, 003 million) of total tonne-kilometres travelled followed by rigid trucks (18.2%) and light commercial vehicles (4.0%).
In 2012, articulated trucks travelled an average of 1.9 million tonne-kilometres. In comparison, rigid trucks and light commercial vehicles travelled an average of 92,300 and 5,800 tonne-kilometres, respectively.
State/territory of operation
In 2012, freight vehicles operating in New South Wales travelled the most tonne-kilometres (56,158 million), followed by Queensland (43,933 million).
Over the period 2007 to 2012, tonne-kilometres travelled by freight vehicles in the Northern Territory increased by 46.9% (963 million). This was the largest percentage increase for any state or territory.
In 2012, registered motor vehicles in Australia consumed 31,839 million litres of fuel. Of the total fuel consumed by motor vehicles in 2012, 57.3% was petrol and 37.7% was diesel.
Passenger vehicles consumed 18,510 million litres of fuel in 2012, of which 84.8% (15,696 million litres) was petrol.
Light commercial vehicles consumed a total of 5,526 million litres of fuel. Diesel accounted for 49.7% (2,745 million litres) and petrol accounted for 42.8% (2,364 million litres).
A total of 6,909 million litres of fuel was consumed by rigid and articulated trucks. Diesel was the main fuel type (99.4%) consumed by trucks.
The average rate of fuel consumption for all motor vehicles in 2012 was 13.7 litres per 100 kilometres. Of all vehicle types, articulated trucks had the highest average fuel consumption with 57.7 litres per 100 kilometres.
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