This year’s budget will make a difference to motorists, and the changes are positive ones.
For example, fuel duty will be frozen until next year, so while the price of fuel probably won’t drop to any satisfactory level, prices won’t skyrocket, either. Petrol will work out at 20p cheaper per litre than under Labour. Vehicle excise duty is still on the rise, and owners of B and D vehicles could see a rise of upwards of £5, although there will be the option to pay monthly, as well as being able to pay every six months or every year. It will no longer be possible to transfer tax when selling a car, however, something which will result in recently sold cars being taxed twice in a year. Handy, for a Government desperately trying to pull in investors and reverse the deficit.
Something which will both please and frustrate motorists who live in rural areas and constantly deal with the hazard of potholes is that a budget of £200million, reserved solely for the filling in of potholes. As discussed in a recent articles in the Guardian, and commonly discussed by those who find themselves with flat tyres as a result of holes in the road, filling in potholes is neither use nor ornament. The filled in holes look messy, and the filling pops out at the first sign of wet or cold weather, frequently leaving the road in a worse state than in the first place. What is really necessary is the resurfacing of bad roads, but at least it’s something.
Stephen Jury, Marketing Manager of motors.co.uk, has some good news for classic car owners: “Owners of classic cars that are over 40 years old will enjoy tax exemption, something which will make driving a classic Austin even more attractive than it is already,” he explains. This change will make a lot more vehicles eligible for tax exemption, as previously it only applied to cards registered before January 1, 1973.
So which motorists will the new budget benefit the most? Certainly those who drive often or for long distances will appreciate the freeze in fuel duty, but those who use their car for running around town may not get so much out of it, as well as potentially being hit by higher tax amounts. The changes in the government’s attitude towards fixing bad roads is encouraging, but whether a bit of filler in a pothole is a good use of public money remains to be seen.
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