In the U.S., we have low gas taxes, low car taxes, few tolls, strict zoning that leads developers to provide lots of free parking, low speed limits, lots of traffic enforcement, and lots of congestion.
In Europe (France and Germany specifically), they have high gas taxes, high car taxes, lots of tolls, almost no free parking, high speed limits (often none at all), little traffic enforcement, and very little congestion.
I’ve never driven in Europe, but I can’t imagine enduring city driving in the European cities I’ve been to. Those drivers are nuts!
But, I’d venture to say that costs of driving in Europe are closer to reflecting the true costs, as opposed to the US’ tax, build with Pork, then neglect highway systems to spend on other pet projects system. The US socializes and subsidizes auto-transportation, while Europe socializes and penalizes. I imagine the European systems is closer to resembling a free-market transportation system than the US. But, we’ll probably never know for sure…