How to save money on car servicing

car servicing

Be smart about car servicing and you can cut how much he’ll cost

Car servicing costs could escalate by as much as 10 per cent after Brexit. A new report conducted for car industry body the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) warns that if tariffs and other trade barriers come into force when the UK leaves the European Union, prices could rise. It claims the average annual cost of car servicing would then increase to £777.

According to the SMMT, 80 per cent of car spares are imported. Almost three quarters of those come from EU-based suppliers. The SMMT is concerned that if no new trading relationship with the EU is secured, tariffs and customs barriers will hike the prices of these parts.

Last year, every UK car owner spent an average £707 on car maintenance. Tyres, lubricants and filters were the most commonly replaced items. However, demand is rising quickly for telematics devices and tyre pressure monitoring sensors. Read our five top tips on how to save money on car servicing.

What does servicing entail?

Continue reading

Diesel and petrol car ban: what does it mean for Britain’s drivers?

Diesel and petrol car ban what does it mean for Britain's drivers?

The government’s announcement that diesel and petrol cars will be banned in Britain from 2040, as a way of tackling air pollution, has led to widespread confusion amongst drivers.

Common concerns include the impact on residual values of used diesel and petrol cars; the relatively high cost of new electric cars; whether hybrid cars will still be available; and how the industry and infrastructure will cope.

We try to tackle these concerns, and more, based on the limited information currently available.

Why ban petrol and diesel cars?

Continue reading

Quiz: How well do you know the most famous people from motoring?

Quiz: How well do you know the most famous people from motoring?

From Henry Ford to Enzo Ferrari, Nigel Mansell to Bernie Ecclestone, these are the people who’ve made a meaningful contribution to the car industry, drivers and enthusiasts the world over. So we’ve devised a tricky quiz to see how much players know about each famous face from motoring.

Spanning car production, Formula One, sport, technology and safety innovations, the topics are varied. But if you have a healthy passion for cars, you stand a good chance of scoring top marks. So take the quiz, and then share your result with friends and challenge them to beat your score. Continue reading

What drivers should know about the Audi and Mercedes diesel recalls

UK to ban diesel and petrol cars from sale by 2040

Mercedes has announced a recall of three million diesel cars worldwide. And Audi said it will carry out repairs to nearly a million of its diesel models. The moves come as the German car makers scramble to reduce levels of harmful toxic emissions and restore drivers’ faith in diesel engines.

In 2015, the Volkswagen Group confessed to cheating at US environmental tests. It has subsequently been forced to carry out fixes to around 11m cars worldwide.

Yesterday the European Commission confirmed that it is conducting an investigation into German car makers over allegations of a cartel that colluded over technology.

With one bad news story after another, here’s what drivers need to know about the latest Mercedes recall.

Continue reading

Connected cars coming to a road near you soon

Connected car

Weather conditions, the state of traffic, and engine software updates will be handled automatically by connected cars. (Picture © Continental)

If you’re lucky enough to drive a car that has its own mobile internet network, you’re ahead of the curve. You’re driving what’s known as a connected car. As time passes, these vehicles will become fundamental to everything we do on the road. They’ll revolutionise how we think of transport and spend time in our cars. They’ll speed up the likelihood of full self-driving cars. And they’ll cut the number of crashes, one day maybe even making road deaths history. Here’s all you need to know about the connected car.

The beginnings of the connected car

Continue reading

Is part exchanging your car for a new model the easy way to sell it?

Part exchanging

Part exchanging your car for a new model can be straightforward

The car buyer’s conundrum has long centred around whether part exchanging is the best way to sell a used car. A few years ago, it could be more profitable than selling a car privately for some sellers. And it’s always been the most convenient. But is that still the case? We investigate part exchanging cars.

What is part exchanging?

Continue reading

Driving in France: which cars can visit Paris with Crit’Air emissions stickers?

Driving in France which cars are allowed in Paris using CritAir sticker system

British holiday makers planning to drive to France this summer are being warned to check their car meets emissions regulations, or they could find themselves fined up to £117 (€135) for entering some of the nation’s most popular city destinations.

Drivers attempting to visit Paris by car are most likely to be affected by changes to the Crit’Air anti-pollution scheme.

Previously, diesel cars that were built before 1997 were banned from cities, including the nation’s capital, due to their poor levels of toxic emissions.

Now authorities have introduced tougher minimum standards. No diesel car registered before 2001 will be permitted to enter Paris during weekdays. Other cities, including Lyon and Grenoble, are expected to follow its lead, which came into force from July. Continue reading

How to cancel vehicle tax and reclaim any that’s not been used

How to cancel vehicle tax and reclaim unused road tax

Anyone who was driving before 2014 may turn misty-eyed at memories of tax discs. Brightly coloured pieces of paper used to be displayed in the windscreen, to prove a driver had paid vehicle tax.

In addition to serving as a quick and simple visual reminder that car tax needed to be renewed, it let authorities easily check whether Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) had been paid. And there was another benefit to it. Anyone selling a used motor could charge for the remaining car tax that was to be enjoyed by the new owner. Alternatively, drivers buying a second-hand car could use the need for new tax to haggle down the price of the car.

In the digital age, that’s no longer the case. Anyone that sells their car and has outstanding VED on it should reclaim the amount paid from the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA). For the same reason, those buying a new or used car must tax it before they can legally drive away.

But it’s not only when drivers sell their car that they can reclaim tax. If a motor is being taken off the road, scrapped, declared a write-off by an insurance company, or stolen the tax can be reclaimed. Here’s how. Continue reading

Diesel car sales fall but new tech could make it cleaner and greener

Diesel cars

Diesel cars are blamed for poor air quality courtesy of their exhaust emissions

Diesel car sales are falling as drivers turn their back on it because of health concerns. But diesel power is about to hit back with new technology designed to reduce harmful exhaust emissions.

Official figures show that sales of diesel cars were down in the UK by a fifth in May 2017 and by 15 per cent in June. That’s compared with the same period in the previous year. The slump is believed to have been caused by various factors. The high-profile Volkswagen diesel cheat device case raised people’s awareness of the harm of the nitrogen oxide (NOx) pollutants diesel produces. But people are also concerned that diesel cars may be slapped with hefty taxes.

However, we can reveal that diesel is hitting back. Automotive technology giant Continental has worked out how to make a much cleaner diesel car.

Why do we need diesel?

Continue reading

Car insurance premiums: why you’re paying more than ever for cover

Car insurance rises to record high average cost

Drivers of all ages are paying record amounts in car insurance premiums. And the Association of British Insurers (ABI) has warned there is no end in sight for the high cost of cover.

The reason for these spiralling prices is a cocktail of external factors. Here we look at why the cost of cover is going up, show where premiums are spent, and point the way to how drivers can save money on their motor insurance.

What’s the average price of UK car insurance?

Continue reading