Automotive Fleet Market Size - UAE

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Automotive Fleet Market Size - UAE

Key Takeaways

  • There are around 3.5 million vehicles in the UAE. 41% of these vehicles are in Dubai and 28% are in Abu Dhabi.
  • 80% of the automotive market in the country consists of passenger cars and the remaining 20% is commercial vehicles.
  • Based on our estimates, there are approximately 24,390 taxis operating within the 7 Emirates, as well as 195,000 rented/leased vehicles.


An overview of the fleet market size in UAE, specifically the number of vehicles in the country, and the available information related to the regional fleet sizes has been presented below.

  • According to the latest Global status report on road safety released in 2018 by WHO, there were 3,391,125 registered vehicles in UAE in 2016. The breakdown is as follows.
    • Cars and 4-wheeled light vehicles - 2,996,338
    • Heavy trucks -237,427
    • Buses - 102,779
    • Motorized 2- and 3-wheelers -54,581
  • An article from the International Trade Administration (US) states that 80% of the UAE automotive market is passenger cars and the remaining 20% is commercial vehicles (trucks, vans, and buses).
  • In 2020, the total number of motor vehicle sales in UAE was 158,711 units. This consisted of 28,810 commercial vehicles and 129,901 passenger cars.
  • Consultancy-me has reported that there are around 3.5 million vehicles on the road in UAE, with over 40% driven in Dubai. A breakdown of these vehicles by region and vehicle type is shown in the chart below.

Number of Vehicles by Region

  • Based on the graph, the number of vehicles in each region is as follows.
    • Dubai -1.44 million (3.5 million*41%)
    • Abu Dhabi - 0.98 million (3.5 million*28%)
    • Sharjah - 0.46 million (3.5 million*13%)
    • Rest of UAE - 0.63 million (3.5 million*18%)

Number of Vehicles by Type

    • SUVs - 1.5 million (3.5 million*43%)
    • Passenger cars - 1.33 million (3.5 million*38%)
    • Commercial vehicles - 630,000 (3.5 million*18%)
    • Multi purpose vehicles - 35,000 million (3.5 million*1%)

  • An article from Gulf News notes that "for the first time, fleet sales have clearly overtaken new car sales to individuals in 2020, with 60:40 in favour of fleet." Ride-sharing and pay-by-minute car leasing services such as Uber and Careem, as well as government departments and taxi services have led to the higher volumes.
  • Global fleet has reported that the UAE is the most advanced market in the Middle East for fleet management and operational leasing. It is the hub for a number of taxi companies, and car-sharing is being developed in both Dubai and Abu Dhabi, notably for Etihad and Emirates airlines.

Taxi Market

  • Dubai Taxi Corp. a subsidiary of the Dubai Government Roads and Transport Authrority (RTA) operates official taxis in Dubai with a fleet of around 10,000 vehicles. Dubai Taxi make up half of the total fleet and the remaining are franchised to the following companies: Arabia Taxi, Cars Taxi, City Taxi, Metro Taxi, National Taxi, and Oneroad.
  • Dubai Taxi offers limousine, taxi, airport taxi, Ameeera Limousine, school bus transport, commercial buses, airport taxis, people of determination taxis, and ladies and family servie taxis among its services.
Abu Dhabi
  • There are currently more than 6,000 taxis in Abu Dhabi operated by 8 different companies including Al Ghazal Taxi, Arabia Taxi, National Taxi and Tawasul Transport. "Along with the Abu Dhabi’s bus services, the taxi fleets of Abu Dhabi make up the public transport system." Data from the Government of Abu Dhabi confirms this finding.
  • There are 4 franchise cab companies operating in SharjahSharjah, Emirates, Union, and Citi Taxi. There are 175 buses in the region, including 64 owned by the authority partners. There are also 180 cabs stationed at the airport.
  • An older report from 2015 states that the total taxi fleet operating in Sharjah, including the franchise companies, is 5,300 vehicles. These include regular cabs, as well as women, family, special needs, and airport only taxis.
Ras Al Khaimah
  • Ras Al Khaimah's has a taxi fleet of 850 cabs. RAK Transport Authority has franchised the taxi operations to Al Hamra Taxi, Al Arabia Taxi, and Al Hamra Limo.
  • There was no recent data available on the taxi fleet size in Ajman. However, it was found that in 2013, there were more than 2000 private taxis operating in the region. Arabia Taxi is one of its franchise taxi operators.
  • An older source from 2011 states that during this time, the Ajman Public Transport Corp's "public transport fleet, which included 600 taxis and 35 buses and vans, was able to meet 70 per cent of the demand earlier. After inducting more vehicles, 1,600 taxis are serving internal areas such as industrial areas."
  • Since recent data on taxi fleets for each of the 7 regions or the UAE (as a whole) was not available, we will use the available information to calculate an estimate. Assuming that there are 9613 taxis in Dubai and that the region accounts for 41% of the total vehicle market share, we can calculate the total fleet size to be around 24,390 (10,000/0.41).

Car Rental and Leasing Market

  • The car rental market in UAE, under both rental and leasing models had a fleet of 110,000 passenger vehicles and 85,000 commercial vehicles in 2018 (with a total of 195,000). Economy & mid-sized sedans and compact SUVs accounted for around 80% of the combined rental and lease fleet.
  • Gasglow Consulting states that 74% of the car rental and leasing market is held by 10-15 large companies with fleet sizes of more than 1000. There are also more than 500 small car rental and leasing companies in UAE, which has led to a saturated market, especially in Dubai.


  • The fleet size of Careem in UAE was not publicly available. However, it was found that, under the deal between Careem and the RTA, Careem’s customers will be able to book all the 9,841 taxis and 4,700 limousines operating in the emirate through the company’s app. Until then, Careem's customers in Dubai were only able to choose from a few thousand limousines which it offered through its app.


Emirates Transport

  • Emirates Transport is the leader in school transport in UAE and has the largest specialized fleet in the country with over 30,000 vehicles. Emirates Transport is currently an exclusive operator for school transportation for government schools in the country with 5,093 buses transporting 218,800 students to 641 schools.


  • Trukker, based in Abu Dhabi is MENA’s largest digital freight solutions platform and truck aggregator with a fleet of over 25,000 trucks and over 500 B2B customers on its platform. The fleet size within the UAE alone was not publicly available.

While we were able to identify the total number of vehicles in the UAE, finding the number of fleets in the country was not as straight forward. After an extensive search through fleet/automotive industry research articles, news, and media sources, it was concluded that this information was not available in the public domain. Also, there was no clear statistics on the number of companies that own vehicle fleets in the UAE, or the average number of vehicles owned per fleet company in order to calculate an estimate.

From our research, we found that fleet companies such as car leasing and taxi companies are leading car sales volumes in the UAE. Therefore, we focused on the taxi fleets and the car rental and leasing market to identify a total market size. (Note: this was also based on the examples of fleet companies provided prior to this research such as Dubai taxi fleet, Sharjah taxi fleet, Airport taxi, and Careem). We were able to provide figures of the taxi fleet size (total) for only 5 out of the 7 Emirates; Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, Ajman, and Ras Ras Al Khaimah due to information limitations. In addition, since the fleet sizes of several regions were based on outdated information, we provided an estimate for the country using the data for Dubai and its 41% overall vehicle market share. We also provided companies that use these taxi fleets (franchise taxi companies) as available, and the type of services provided by these companies as a proxy for vehicle types since this information was not available publicly.

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