The latest figures for traffic in Great Britain from the Department for Transport (DfT) shows that levels have gone up by 2.2 per cent with 316.1 billion vehicle miles covered by UK drivers.
Van traffic continued to rise faster than any other vehicle type, increasing by 6 per cent to a new peak of 46.9 billion vehicle miles.
The report suggests the trend reflects the growth in the economy as well as lower fuel prices.
Since March 2007, traffic on motorways and rural roads has reached a new high, while urban traffic remains below 2007 levels.
The IAM said that the figures give “cause for concern” as traffic levels continue to increase at an “unsustainable” rate.
Gary Rae, campaigns director for road safety charity, Brake, said: “In a report published earlier this year, the DfT forecasts is for traffic growth of 19 per cent to 55 per cent between 2010 and 2040.
“Back in 2011, the RAC Foundation reported that the number of cars was set to increase by 43 per cent by 2035 and traffic delays by 50 per cent.
“The figures are heading the wrong way and we’re heading for gridlock.
“The government needs to get a grip and outline what it intends to do.”