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Cheap Road Tax

New Cars from £140/year; Used Cars from £0/year

 

How much is my road tax?

People think of Road Tax (or Vehicle Excise Duty) as one tax - the disc that you used to put in your windscreen before the system went entirely electronic.

But the fact is Road Tax is far more complicated than that and - for cars alone - is made up of at least four different systems and bands: Classic Car Road Tax (cars more than 40 years old), cars registered before 2001, cars registered between 2001 and 2017 and those registered after April 2017.

Below we set out details of each of the systems and, where possible, how you can save money on road tax.

In This Guide

Road Tax for cars after 1 April 2017

Road Tax for cars between 2001 & 2017

Road Tax for cars before 2001

How much is my Road Tax?

Road Tax questions & answers

Rates, bands and VED information for cars registered from 1 April 2018

CO2 emissions (g/km)

Petrol (T48) and diesel cars (T49)

First Year Rate

First Year Rate

diesel cars (T49)*

0 £0 £0 £0
1-50 £140 £10 £25
51-75 £140 £25 £105
76-90 £140 £105 £125
91-100 £140 £125 £145
101-110 £140 £145 £165
111-130 £140 £165 £205
131-150 £140 £205 £515
151-170 £140 £515 £830
171-190 £140 £830 £1240
191-225 £140 £1240 £1760
226-255 £140 £1760 £2070
Over 255 £140 £2070 £2070

*This rate applies to diesel vehicles that do not meet the real driving emissions step 2 (RDE) standard. >> What is RDE? Find out here

Rates, bands and VED information for cars registered after 1 April 2017

George Osborne announced sweeping changes to the VED system in his Summer Budget 2015 to account for the rising number of low emissions vehicles. 

From 2017, all new cars are be taxed against three new VED bands - zero, standard, premium - with taxation calculated on a combination of emissions and the list price of the vehicle. The changes will not impact existing cars on the road.

There is a flat standard rate of £140 for all new cars except those emitting zero CO2. Cars with a list price above £40,000 will pay an additional £310 per year - £450 in total - for the first five years in which the standard rate is paid.

From 2020-21 the government will spend all of the revenue raised from VED on the road network only.

First tax payment when you register the vehicle

CO2 emissions (g/km)Petrol (TC48) and diesel cars (TC49)Alternative fuel cars (TC59)
0 £0 £0
1 - 50 £10 £0
51 - 75 £25 £15
76 - 90 £100 £90
91 - 100 £120 £110
101 - 110 £140 £130
111 - 130 £160 £150
131 - 150 £200 £190
151 - 170 £500 £490
171 - 190 £800 £790
191 - 225 £1,200 £1,190
226 - 255 £1,700 £1,690
Over 255 £2,000 £1,990

This payment covers your vehicle for 12 months.

Rates for second tax payment onwards

Fuel typeSingle 12 month paymentSingle 12 month payment by Direct DebitTotal of 12 monthly payments by Direct DebitSingle 6 month paymentSingle 6 month payment by Direct Debit
Petrol or diesel £140 £140 £147 £77 £73.50
Electric £0 £0 £0 £0 £0
Alternative £130 £130 £136.50 £71.50 £68.25

Alternative fuel vehicles include hybrids, bioethanol and liquid petroleum gas.

Vehicles with a list price of more than £40,000

Fuel typeSingle 12 month paymentSingle 12 month payment by Direct DebitTotal of 12 monthly payments by Direct DebitSingle 6 month paymentSingle 6 month payment by Direct Debit
Petrol or diesel £450 £450 £472.50 £247.50 £236.25
Electric £310 £310 £325.50 £170.50 £162.75
Alternative £440 £440 £462 £242 £231

You have to pay an extra £310 a year if you have a car or motorhome with a ‘list price’ (the published price before any discounts) of more than £40,000.

You only have to pay this rate for 5 years (from the second time the vehicle is taxed).

 

Rates, bands and VED information for cars registered between 2001 and 2017

If your car is registered between 2001 and 2017, you pay road tax (or vehicle excise duty) on how high your car's CO2 emissions are. This is a more complex system than the one that went before it and came after. During its lifespan, this road tax system was modified under several governments. You will need to know your car's CO2 emissions in order to calculate its road tax (or you can let us do it for you).

It did, however, create several opportunities for car owners to pay zero or very little road tax. As car manufacturers learned to game the system, more cars fell into lower bands and this ultimately led to its abolition. 

From 2017 to 2018 there is no first year rate under the current graduated VED system because the new VED system is coming into effect.

VED bandCO2 emissions (g/km)2016 to 2017
Standard rate
2016 to 2017
First year rate
2017 to 2018
Standard rate
2017 to 2018
First year rate
A Up to 100 £0 £0 £0 N/A
B 101-110 £20 £0 £20 N/A
C 111-120 £30 £0 £30 N/A
D 121-130 £110 £0 £115 N/A
E 131-140 £130 £130 £135 N/A
F 141-150 £145 £145 £150 N/A
G 151-165 £185 £185 £190 N/A
H 166-175 £210 £300 £220 N/A
I 176-185 £230 £355 £240 N/A
J 186-200 £270 £500 £280 N/A
K*
201-225 £295 £650 £305 N/A
L 226-255 £500 £885 £520 N/A
M Over 255 £515 £1,120 £535 N/A

 Includes cars emitting over 225g/km registered before 23 March 2006.

1Calculate my road tax for me

How much is my road tax?

2Or choose a make and model to show your road tax rates

How much is my road tax?

Cars from 1 April 2017 are taxed at a flat rate, based on initial list price.

Cars from 1 March 2001-1 April 2017 are taxed according to how much CO2 they emit.

Cars registered before 1 March 2001 are taxed on engine size. There are two bands: engines up to and including 1549cc and engines over 1549cc.

3The Sub-100g/km Club

Some cars offer the first year free, but incur a charge thereafter. But others, if the CO2 is low enough, allow owners to renew the VED free of charge year after year. The current threshold for that is 100g/km and a surprisingly high number of cars now qualify. 

See the full list

4Top 50: Cars in Road Tax band A

Want to reduce the cost of your motoring? One way is to choose a car that’s in band A for Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) which means it emits less than 100g/km of CO2, and you’ll pay precisely nothing in annual car tax.

See the full list

5Top 50: Cars in Road Tax band B

Even if you can’t manage to be completely road-tax free, step up into VED Band B – for cars emitting 101-110 g/km of CO2 - and you’ll still only pay £20 per year.

That sounds pretty good to us, and even better news is the terrific choice of cars in that band, from the practical to the premium.

See the full list

6Buying a classic car?

Our sister site Honest John Classics has everything you need to know on taxing a classic car - including details of those that are road tax exempt.

See the full details

      

Rates for cars registered before 2001

The system for cars registered before April 2001 is based exclusively on engine size. It's simple to understand with two rates - one for those below 1.6 litres and one for above 1.6 litres. There is the option of paying every six or 12 months. There is nothing in the way of saving money. The under 1.6 litres/six month option is the cheapest rate of road tax.

Engine size2016 to 20172017 to 2018
1549cc and below £145 £150
Above 1549cc £235 £245

Ask HJ

Why do cars with foreign number plates not have to pay road tax?

Why don't the DVSA do anything about cars with foreign number plates. I was told by the DVSA that it was down to the owner to register the car in the UK after 9 months?
It's 6 months actually, but a good question. Not 50 metres from my front door are two UK RHD cars dumped on a footway and communal hard standing with Bulgarian plates from the same province. One has been there for 9 months. The one on the footway one month. There has been a local purge on untaxed UK reg cars in the last week, but these two get away with it. The police will only act if the cars are spotted actually being driven.
Answered by Honest John
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Ask HJ

With the backlash against diesel, can we expect to see more petrol engine cars?

With the upcoming tax changes and the potential backlash against diesel, can we expect to see more petrol engine cars? I would love to see a Ford Kuga with a 2.0-litre 240PS EcoBoost engine.
I think a 2.0 EcoBoost Kuga is a distinct likelihood, especially now that JLR doesn't need these engines for its Range Rover Evoque and Jaguar XE any more.
Answered by Honest John
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How much is my road tax?

 

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