New E10 petrol perplexes a quarter of motorists

Gareth Herincx

4 days ago
Auto News

One-in-four drivers are still in the dark about a new greener fuel now available at pumps, according to RAC research.

More than a quarter of drivers (27%) are yet to check whether their car is compatible with E10 petrol which arrives at forecourts this month, with a similar proportion (24%) unaware that the new fuel is being introduced to replace E5 as the standard grade of unleaded petrol.

A blend of petrol and ethanol, the Government says E10 could cut transport CO2 emissions by 750,000 tonnes a year – the equivalent of taking 350,000 cars off the road. The ethanol used is made from materials including low-grade grains, sugars and waste wood.

However, a small number of older vehicles, including classic cars and some from the early 2000s, will still need more expensive E5 super unleaded fuel, which is why it remains as an option.

Engine damage could be caused to cars incompatible with the new fuel. If you’re in any doubt, check if your vehicle can run on E10 petrol using the Government’s simple online tool.

Of those drivers surveyed who know their main car is not compatible with the new E10 fuel, the impact of the cost of having to fill up with super unleaded instead – which can cost around 12p more per litre than standard unleaded – is the single biggest concern, cited by 59% of respondents.

Around half (53%) are worried about finding forecourts that sell E5 super unleaded in the first place, while a fifth (20%) fear mistakenly filling up with E10.

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EVs are nearly 50% cheaper to run than petrol cars

Hyundai Kona Electric

Electric vehicles are nearly £1,000 cheaper to run than petrol cars over a year, according to new research from comparethemarket.com.

The figures show the average cost to run an EV for 12 months is £1,091 compared with £2,062 for a conventional car – a difference of £971.

The running costs for petrol cars are substantially higher as drivers of these vehicles pay an average of £640 for car insurance and £1,212 for the fuel each year.

Owners of petrol vehicles also typically need to spend at least £155 per year on road tax, while EVs are exempt.

Average running costs for 12 months

Vehicle Type Insurance Fuel MOT Road Tax Total
Electric £583 £454 £55 £0 £1,091
Petrol £640 £1,212 £55 £155 £2,062
Difference -£57 -£759 £0 -£155 -£971

The annual cost of driving an electric car has fallen by £77 in the most recent six months (May 21 – Dec 20), compared with the previous six months (Jun 20 – Nov 20).

This decline is due to a £54 drop in the cost of insurance for electric vehicles and a £23 dip in energy costs.

Electric car drivers can further reduce their running costs if they switch to the cheapest premium available. This typically costs £489, which means motorists could save £93 by shopping around for a better deal.

Electric car charging bay

Despite the substantially cheaper running costs, the up-front price of electric vehicles is a sticking point for many drivers considering making the switch from petrol.

A second-hand electric car is typically worth £22,813, based on the average value of electric vehicles from insurance renewal data.

This suggests it would take more than 20 years for the lower running costs to cover the purchase of an electric vehicle. However, motorists may be able to cover some of the purchase price by trading in their existing vehicle.

“The popularity of electric cars continues to accelerate as these vehicles now make up around one in ten new car sales,” said Dan Hutson, head of motor insurance, comparethemarket.com.

“Motorists who’ve made the switch will be glad to see our figures show electric vehicles cost roughly half as much to run as their petrol alternatives.

“These drivers benefit from substantial savings in fuel bills, insurance and tax – as well as doing their part for the environment.

“Electric car owners could save even more on running costs if they shop around for the cheapest deal when their insurance premium comes up for renewal.

“These drivers may also want to think about switching to a new Electric Vehicle Tariff for their home energy. EV Tariffs are designed to help motorists cut their energy bills by making it cheaper to charge electric cars overnight.”

Top 20 cheapest cars to drive in the UK

Home / Auto News / Top 20 cheapest cars to drive in the UK

Gareth Herincx

2 days ago
Auto News

Cost of motoring

New research by comparison site Uswitch has revealed the cheapest cars to run, breaking down the annual running costs of the country’s most popular motors.

Knowing how much it’s going cost to run a car each year is an important part of any purchase decision, so the study calculated the cost per mile (CPM) and annual running cost (including fuel, insurance, road tax and miles per gallon) against the UK’s average mileage (7,400 miles).

Top 20 cheapest cars to run each year in the UK

Rank Vehicle Total Annual Running Cost Average Cost Per Mile
1 Kia Picanto £1,372.63 £0.19
2 Citroen C1 £1,383.50 £0.19
3 Peugeot 108 £1,405.32 £0.19
4 Toyota Aygo £1,418.58 £0.19
5 Toyota Yaris £1,420.18 £0.19
6 Hyundai i10 £1,439.55 £0.19
7 Toyota Corolla £1,443.84 £0.20
8 Toyota Prius £1,446.27 £0.20
9 Fiat 500 £1,448.96 £0.20
10 Suzuki Swift £1,458.33 £0.20
11 Fiat Panda £1,467.62 £0.20
12 Volkswagen UP! £1,481.03 £0.20
13 Honda Jazz £1,487.20 £0.20
14 Hyundai i20 £1,495.95 £0.20
15 Dacia Sandero £1,502.50 £0.20
16 Skoda Fabia £1,510.75 £0.20
17 Kia Ceed £1,513.12 £0.20
18 Renault Megane £1,516.57 £0.20
19 Ford Fiesta £1,526.51 £0.21
20 Mazda 2 £1,526.99 £0.21

“When buying a new car there are many factors that have to be taken into account before making a final decision on which make and model to purchase,” said Joel Kempson, car insurance expert at Uswitch.com.

“However, undoubtedly the most important factor is the costs that come with purchasing a vehicle, not only the cost of the car itself but also the extra cash needed to run it day to day.

“According to our cost per mile (CPM) calculation, the Kia Picanto is the most affordable car to run per mile, making the vehicle a great choice for drivers wanting to save money over the long term.”

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Gareth is a versatile journalist, copywriter and digital editor who’s worked across the media in newspapers, magazines, TV, teletext, radio and online. After long stints at the BBC, GMTV and ITV, he now specialises in motoring.

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