Diesel drivers should feel 'short-changed' by fuel prices, say the RAC

Published 06 October 2020

While diesel prices are lower than they were at the start of the year, diesel drivers are still paying more than they should be - according to the RAC.

The low wholesale cost of diesel means that pump prices should be low as savings are passed onto motorists. However, the RAC has accused retailers of overcharging diesel drivers by as much as 8p-per-litre.

"Diesel drivers should feel short-changed by the decision of retailers to keep prices artificially high."

The wholesale price of diesel has been lower than petrol for six weeks, yet its average forecourt price is more expensive than petrol’s. This means diesel could be sold by the lowest cost retailers (like supermarkets) for around 110p-per-litre. Instead, it's around 118ppl on average and 114p at supermarkets.

"Diesel drivers should feel short-changed by the decision of retailers to keep prices artificially high," said RAC fuel spokesman Simon Williams said. 

"The wholesale price of diesel has now been lower than the petrol equivalent for six weeks, yet petrol continues to be sold for 3.5p less than diesel. This must surely be difficult for retailers to justify. We strongly urge them to lower their prices in an effort to restore drivers’ trust."

Diesel drivers are now paying £65 for a complete fill-up in contrast to the start of the year when it was nearer £73. With the average UK price of unleaded standing at 114p, it means a full 55-litre tank will set drivers back £63 – which is £7 less than January.

Unleaded is now nearly 9p a litre more expensive than its pandemic low of 105p on 21 May and diesel is almost 7p a litre dearer than its low of 111.23p.

A litre of unleaded remained at 114p, while diesel continued to be sold at an average of 118p a litre in September. The average price of petrol sold by the big four supermarkets still stands at 109p a litre, with diesel at 114p.


Martin Wright    on 10 October 2020

Trying to build a bit of margin I guess. Also volume must be down, I have just about done 1,000 miles in the last 3 months instead of in a week before lockdown. Loving working from home!

Peter Jannece    on 12 October 2020

Is there any evidence of alleged collusion on maintaining this artificially high price?

   on 13 October 2020

We moved to Spain were our local she'll garage sells Diesel at 89.9 cents (82p) petrol is 10 to 15 cents more

paul mack    on 13 October 2020

Absolutely no surprise here for me.

I’ve said before that the Oil Companies and Supermarkets are legal robbing cowboys!
GREED and PROFIT are their only thoughts here and stuff the motorist no matter what.

Nowt else to say.


clef    on 13 October 2020

Premium fuel is 12/14p more expensive than regular in UK whilst in EU it's 5/6 cents more expensive. How do the oil companies justify that ? The motorist in UK is always a soft touch !

zacepi    on 13 October 2020

Ah that crazy time in 2015 when diesel prices were the same as petrol. Looked like it was finally the promised land of 1999 when diesel was less than petrol, and the government's preferred choice of fuel - which they strongly incentivised company car drivers to choose.

Then it shot up again in the usual moneygrab.

Edited by zacepi on 13/10/2020 at 13:15

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