The RAC's annual Cost of Motoring index has revealed the average cost of keeping a car on the road to be a staggering £6,689 per annum, a rise of 14% (£819) on last year. That's an average of £128.64 per week and 55.74 pence per mile, but however you dress it up it is surely a hefty blow to Britain's already cash-strapped motorists.
The Cost of Motoring Index, which is based on a pool of 17 new cars weighted by their ownership, is calculated by taking into consideration all the various financial outgoings associated with owning a new car. These include: depreciation, finance, service, maintenance, repair, fuel, insurance, road tax and breakdown cover.
The area that saw the sharpest rise was fuel, the annual cost of which has risen by £160 to £1,458 – a 12.4% increase in just one year.
Insurance costs have also been heavily affected, with the costs for insurers from personal injury claims and associated legal costs, insurance fraud and uninsured drivers involved in accidents, all pushing the price up sharply. A rise of 14.4% to an average of £551 means that the cost of insurance is now an alarming 35% higher than in 2009.
Adrian Tink, RAC motoring strategist, comments: “This year's Cost of Motoring index highlights the tough conditions being faced by Britain's motorists. With the annual cost of motoring approaching seven thousand pounds the price burden of car ownership is hitting drivers hard.
“...UK drivers want to see action from the Government. Last week's Commons debate, prompted by the Fair Fuel UK campaign, showed the real depth of feeling across the country on the issue. At the very least, we are calling for the scrapping of next year's planned fuel duty increases.”
Tink also called on oil companies to be more transparent over pricing and to allow drivers to know exactly where their money is going. With both Shell and Exxon recording a sharp increase in profits in the wake of rising oil prices, motorists are, not surprisingly, demanding more information.