Institute for Transport Studies (ITS)

Motoring and vehicle Ownership Trends in the UK (MOT)

Efforts to reduce the emissions from car travel have so far been hampered by a lack of specific information on car ownership and use. The Motoring and vehicle Ownership Trends in the UK (MOT) project seeks to address this by bringing together new sources of data to give a spatially and disaggregated diagnosis of car ownership and use in Great Britain and the associated energy demand and emissions.

Data from annual car M.O.T tests, made available by the Department for Transport, will be used as a platform upon which to develop and undertake a set of inter-linked modelling and analysis tasks using multiple sources of vehicle-specific and area-based data. Through this the project will develop the capability to understand spatial and temporal differences in car ownership and use, the determinants of those differences, and how levels may change over time and in response to various policy measures. The relationship between fuel use and emissions, and the demographic, economic, infrastructural and socio-cultural factors influencing these will also be tested.

Consequently, the MOT project has the potential to transform the way in which energy and emissions related to car use are quantified, understood and monitored to help refine future research and policy agendas and to inform transport and energy infrastructure planning.

Project Partners

Professor Jillian Anable, Institute for Transport Studies (ITS)
Dr Sally Cairns, Transport Research Laboratory
Professor Eddie Wilson, University of Bristol
Dr Tim Chatterton, Geography and Environmental Management, University of the West of England


Journal Papers

Chatterton, T., Barnes, J., Wilson, R.E., Anable, J., Cairns, S. (2015). Use of a novel dataset to explore spatial and social variations in car type, size, usage and emissions. Transportation Research Part D: Transport and Environment, Volume 39, August 2015, Pages 151-164, ISSN 1361-9209,

Wilson, R. E., Cairns, S., Notley, S., Anable, J., Chatterton, T., & McLeod, F. (2013). Techniques for the inference of mileage rates from MOT data. Transportation Planning and Technology. 36:1, pp.130-143. DOI: 10.1080/03081060.2012.745768.

Wilson, R. E., Anable, J., Cairns, S., Chatterton, T., Notley, S., & Lees-Miller, J. D. (2013). On the estimation of temporal mileage rates. TRANSPORTATION RESEARCH PART E-LOGISTICS AND TRANSPORTATION REVIEW, 60, 126-139. DOI:

Conference Papers (Refereed)

Chatterton, T., Barnes, J., Yeboah, G., Anable, J. (2015), Energy Justice?  A spatial analysis of variations in household direct energy consumption in the UK. European Council for an Energy Efficient Economy (ECEEE) 2015 Summer Study on Energy Efficiency, 1–6 June 2015, Club Belambra Les Criques, Presqu’île de Giens Toulon/Hyères, France. Paper ID: 1-159-15.

Yeboah, G., Anable, J, Chatterton, T., Barnes, J., Wilson, E. R., Turnbull, O., Cairns, S. (2015), Understanding car ownership elasticities in England and Wales: Advancing the evidence base with new data sources. In: Malleson, Nick; Addis, Nicholas; Durham, Helen; Heppenstall, Alison; Lovelace, Robin; Norman, Paul; Oldroyd, Rachel (2015): GIS Research UK (GISRUK) 2015 Proceedings. figshare.,  pp.704-713. Retrieved 10:27, Jul 22, 2015 (GMT).

Wilson, R. E., Anable, J., Cairns, S., Chatterton, T., Notley, S., & Lees-Miller, J. D. (2013). On the estimation of temporal mileage rates. 20th International Symposium on Transportation and Traffic Theory (ISTTT 2013), Delft, Netherlands, July 17-19, 2013. [Proceedings published: Procedia-Social and Behavioural Sciences, Vol. 80, pp.139-156, June 2013.] DOI: 10.1016/j.sbspro.2013.05.010.

Conference Papers (not Refereed)

Chatterton, T., Barnes, J., Wilson, E., Anable, J, Cairns, S. Variations in car type, size, usage and emissions across Great Britain and relationships with socio-demographic characteristics. University Transport Studies Group 44th Annual Conference, Newcastle, January 2014.


S Cairns, Wilson, R., Chatterton, T., Anable, J., Notley, S., & McLeod, F. (2014). Using MOT test data to analyse travel behaviour change - scoping report (p. 33). ISBN:978-1-910377-01-7.

Conference Presentations

Chatterton, T. and Barnes, J. New Geographies of Energy Use and Energy Need: Mapping Household Direct Energy Consumption in the UK. Assocation of American Geographers Annual Meeting, Chicago, April 2015.

Chatterton, T. Using MOT Data to Investigate patterns of vehicle-use and links with air quality. Investigation of Air Pollution Standing Conference IAPSC, Sheffield, 18 June 2013.

Chatterton, T., Barnes, J., Anable, J, Yeboah, G., Wilson, E., Anable, J, Cairns, S. Energy usage from private car usage and its relationship to domestic energy usage - a spatial analysis of the key determinants and related socio-demographic characteristics. Abstract accepted for 3rd European Conference on behaviour and energy efficiency ('BEHAVE'), Oxford, Sepember 2014.

Chatterton, T., Barnes, J., Anable, J, Wilson, E., Cairns, S. Household direct energy usage through electricity, gas and car usage in England and Wales – a social and environmental justice analysis. Abstract accepted for RGS-IBG Annual International Conference 2014. Session: Transport and energy: exploring mobilities at the research-policy interface. London, August 2014.

Other Presentations

Chatterton, T., MOT Overview Pecha Kucha presentation and workshop "Moving Behaviours: Connecting Travel", Workshop, Transport Systems Catapult, Milton Keynes, 23/6/15

Chatterton, T., Moving Behaviours: Designing City Connections, Workshop, Future Cities Catapult, London, 15/6/15.

Wilson, E., Anable, J., Cairns, S., Chatterton, T., Turnbull, O., et al., Techniques for Inferring Mileage from the Department for Transport's MOT Data Set. Centre for Transport Study Seminar, Room 163, Skempton (Civil Eng.) Building, Imperial College London, 25 Mar 2015, London. PDF copy of presentation.

Barnes, J. and Chatterton, T. Presenting data from the MOT project. Presented at 'Presenting Complex Transport Statistics' workshop. Transport Statistics User Group Seminar Series, London, 16th July, 2014.

Chatterton, T., Barnes, J., Wilson, E., Anable, J., Cairns, S. Understanding Total Household Energy Demand from Domestic Energy and Car-Use Using New Sources of Data. 'Informal Session' and poster at European Council for an Energy Efficiency Economy (ECEEE) Summer Study on Energy Efficiency, 3-8 June 2013, France.

Chatterton, T. Working with Big Data: Issues of Time, Space, Truth and Justice! Presented at ‘Making mixed-methods work in transport research: workshop, Leeds, 20th June 2013. Presentation to Travel Behaviours Network.

MOT project overview (PDF)

Project Facts

Budget (ITS): £
Funded by:  Research Councils UK Energy programme

For further information, please contact: Professor Jillian Anable