2017 Budget: What it means for drivers

2017 Budget What it means for drivers

Drivers have been given some good news, after Philip Hammond, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, announced in the 2017 Budget that fuel duty will be frozen, despite widespread fears it would be raised to help balance the nation’s books.

It means that for the seventh year in a row, the duty on fuel remains frozen. This is estimated to save the average British driver £75 a year, and as much as £270 for van drivers.

At the same time, road tax – formally known as Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) – has been frozen for a further year, for private motorists and hauliers.

It’s a small comfort for UK motorists. Despite drivers facing some of the lowest pre-tax prices on fuel in Europe, duty adds a thumping 57.95 pence to the price of every litre of petrol or diesel.

The current average price of a litre of petrol in the UK stands at 120 pence, and diesel is 122 pence.

At the same time, the Government announced a £690m lump sum that was aimed at helping tackle rush hour traffic levels, which are at a historic high and mean the UK faces some of the lowest average speeds in Europe.

The rush hour has been steadily slowing, with average speeds dipping to just 3.5mph in some parts of London.

Howard Cox, founder of FairFuelUK, described the fuel duty freeze as “great news for 37m drivers” and praised the government for listening to motorists, van drivers and hauliers.

However, there was no additional funding for road repairs, meaning the backlog of pothole repairs is likely to grow further still from its current 14-year level, as reported in this blog post.

Chancellor: prepare for a tax on diesel cars this autumn

Philip Hammond hinted at a new “tax treatment for diesel vehicles” that is likely to be announced in the autumn budget.

It means owners of diesel-powered cars, or anyone buying their next car and trying to choose between a petrol or diesel model, face uncertainty for the duration.

Also announced in the 2017 Budget was free travel to selective schools for children who qualify for free school meals. And there was a £270m lump set aside to support the development of electrically-powered vehicles, robotics and artificial intelligence.

Some insurance industry observers say the Chancellor missed an opportunity to reduce the cost of insuring a car. Simon McCulloch, Director of comparethemarket.com, said: “As getting on the road becomes more and more expensive, we had hoped that Philip Hammond might have announced new measures to help motorists cut the costs, such as exempting young drivers from Insurance premium Tax, to avoid them being priced off the road, or even resorting to driving without insurance.”

Hammond said it was vital the government continued with its austerity plans, citing how the nation spends more on interest for national debt than defence and policing combined.

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12 comments on “2017 Budget: What it means for drivers

  1. Michael Crawford April 5, 2017 3:26 pm

    find this interesting, have a 06 plate diesel have no plans to change price has gone down. As a pensioner I will have no choice but to run it on and on. If big cities charge will go else were and spend my money.

    • Roderick Oakley April 5, 2017 5:18 pm

      I can understand applying a tax to newly registered diesel vehicles given fair warning that it was going to happen after a certain date. To apply a tax to previously registered
      diesel vehicles would be unfair as the information given at the time I purchased my diesel car, February 2010, was that the noxious emissions were less than an equivalent petrol engine car, in fact my car was at that time proving more economical to run than a hybrid, ie. more miles to the gallon. The car has a 1250cc diesel engine.

  2. Mark Woodcock April 6, 2017 12:38 pm

    Will the government help with scrap allowance for diesel cars

  3. john April 6, 2017 6:13 pm

    This is just another way of getting money from the workers, if the Government is determined to reduce congestion and pollution in the town why are they still issuing the free mobility motors these must count for 40% of the cars on the road ?. They could reduce both over night if they stopped issuing these cars.

  4. Mac Dodge April 9, 2017 10:51 am

    Whilst I can understand the logic of the government in trying to move diesel cars off the road I feel it will be wrong to penalise existing drivers who, in many cases bought into diesel because of government advice. There should add a stiff penalty on new car buyers who still want diesel fuel even in the light of current evidence, this will slowly reduce the diesel cars on our roads. The only fast alternative is an expensive scrappage scheme in conjunction with assistance from manufacturers. So, Scrap 1 car and get financial assistance from the government and a hefty discount from manufacturers to buy another car, based on new car purchase. This would not only rid the roads of diesel but put unto date new efficient cars in their place

  5. Kelvin Philpott April 10, 2017 11:27 am

    There was talk of a ‘Scrappit’ but I am not holding my breath.

  6. Mel Hough April 10, 2017 2:19 pm

    I wouldn’t go to any town or city where I was charged to visit regardless of the reason.
    Suggest everyone does the same and they will soon get the message. Plenty of places to spend your hard earned without paying for it.

  7. allan April 11, 2017 10:08 am

    why are we so strict when other countries do things differently

  8. Paul Sullivan April 12, 2017 11:42 am

    I am fed up with the continued misplaced nonsence about diesel cars. I have a 2011 Peugeot 1.6 turbo diesel with exhaust catalyst and particulate filter. Not only does it measure miniscule exhaust pollution and just over 100mg CO2, which is also very low; but I usually get between 66 and 74 MPG. Compare this to the figures for the gas guzzling petrol SUVs which are so popular here. On the diesel front don’t forget most buses, taxis, lorries and vans are diesel as are building machinery, compressors, generators, all non-electric trains and much more besides. Suggestions are that I would be taxed to hell whilst the polluting petrol vehicles of the rich would get off with it. If there is a problem with diesels then the governments of the past should not have encouraged their purchase and if they want them off the road they should buy out the owners to buy new cars, the pollution and energy of whose manufacture far outweighs that which they produce/use during their entire life.

  9. Joseph McKane April 14, 2017 6:27 pm

    Well Said, I also tow a caravan what do I do if using petrol this would use a hell of a lot more fuel and any saving for the environment I am sure would not be compensated by this change.

  10. John McGibbon April 18, 2017 12:02 pm

    The concern is that Diesel powered vehicles cause lung disease wherever they go. I have elected to drive an electrically powered car which will help reduce this effect on the general population Rid yourself of your diesel vehicle & save a life

  11. Pete Martin April 18, 2017 9:00 pm

    Parking in towns and cities has become almost impossible with councils marking roads with double yellow lines, I thought these should have only been placed in narrow streets where emergency vehicles may need to get through, I travelled to Bexleyheath in Kent only to find it was double yellow lines on every road including roads that are at least 60ft wide and are not busy roads. The council is treating motorists as a cash cow and it should be stopped I can’t even park a motorbike there. without someone wanting to fleece you. I will not shop in Welling or Bexleyheath for this reason. you can’t even visit the local police station without having to pay extortionate amounts in parking fees

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