Another March, another budget, another mauling for the motorist?
Well, no, as it turns out. All things considered we’ve got off quite lightly.
Fuel Duty Frozen
Fuel duty is frozen with last September’s planned 1.6p increase having now been cancelled. Previously the increase was ‘postponed’ with each budget and this means that there are no planned fuel duty increases before the 2015 general election.
Before you get all teary eyed at Osbourne’s generosity just remember that fuel duty currently stands at 57.95 pence per litre, with 20% VAT charged on top of the forecourt price PLUS the fuel duty. That means for a £1.30 litre you’re paying roughly 80p in tax and 50p to the retailer.
Road Tax Up
Road tax remains largely the same, with the odd £5 here and £10 there added to the rates. The highest emitting cars see big increases in the first year rate but seeing as they tend to be expensive supercars their wealthy buyers will almost certainly be oblivious to the change.
|VED Band||CO2 Emissions (g/km)||2013/14 First Year Rate||2013/14 Standard Rate||2014/15 First Year Rate||2014/15 Standard Rate|
|A||Up to 100||£0||£0||£0||£0|
|B||101 - 110||£0||£20||£0||£20|
|C||111 - 120||£0||£30||£0||£30|
|D||121 - 130||£0||£105||£0||£110|
|E||131 - 140||£115||£125||£130||£130|
|F||141 - 150||£130||£140||£145||£145|
|G||151 - 165||£165||£175||£180||£180|
|H||166 - 175||£265||£200||£290||£205|
|I||176 - 185||£315||£220||£345||£225|
|J||186 - 200||£445||£260||£485||£265|
|K||201 - 225||£580||£280||£635||£285|
|L||226 - 255||£790||£475||£860||£455|
|Engine Capacity||2013/2014 Tax Rate||2014/2015 Tax Rate|
|1,549cc or less||£140 per year||£145 per year|
|Over 1,549cc||£220 per year||£230 per year|
Classic Car Exemptions
There’s good news for owners of classic cars. The government has finally seen fit to bring back the rolling exemption for classic cars, correcting the wrong that was made by the Labour government when they stepped into power back in 1997.
The only catch is that the exemption isn’t as generous as it used to be. Originally cars aged 25 years or over were exempt but now that stands at forty years of age. Put simply it means that from April 2014 cars built in or before 1973 will be charged nothing for VED. From April 2015 the exemption extends to cars built in 1974, and so on.
A new £200m fund has been announced to help councils tackle the blight of potholes affecting our roads. Sadly that’s just a drop in the ocean compared to what’s needed to catch up with backlog of road maintenance but at least it gives councils one less excuse for letting our roads fall to pieces.