Currently there are 130 cars per 1,000 people in Beijing's urban zone, while U.S. and European cities have ratios of 400 to 500 per 1,000 residents.
This year, auto sales in China are expected to top 21 million vehicles, according to IHS Automotive. By comparison, U.S. auto sales are projected to be 16.4 million.
Worldwide, the auto industry is expected to build a record 87.4 million vehicles.
Boon to car sharing?
As congestion and pollution continue to choke some of the world's largest cities, there's a growing sense residents in those cities will turn to car-share programs to get around.
Zipcar has seen increased business in many U.S. cities due to residents deciding they cannot afford, or perhaps don't have the space, to own a car.
(Read more: European car sales decline for sixth-straight year)
It's a trend that industry leaders are aware of, with some saying these types of businesses will likely become more popular.
Bill Ford, chairman of Ford Motor and the great-grandson of Henry Ford, has been warning business and government leaders that the world is quickly driving toward a massive traffic jam.
"If we do nothing, we face the prospect of 'global gridlock', a never-ending traffic jam that wastes time, energy and resources and even compromises the flow of commerce and health care," Ford said last year at the Mobile World Congress in Spain.
—By CNBC's Phil LeBeau. Follow him on Twitter @LeBeauCarNews.
Questions? Comments? BehindTheWheel@cnbc.com.