Not that long ago, the UK government was promoting the use of diesel cars. Back in the early 2000s, the road tax system changed to a CO2-based system, which favored diesel cars.
Now, things have changed. The UK government – along with governments across Europe – are creating emission taxes that are designed to deter people from driving them.
In this article, we’re going to look at the pros and cons of owning a diesel car and answer the question – should you sell your diesel car?
The Benefits Of Owning A Diesel Car
Before you jump ship and sell your diesel car, you should consider the benefits. You might be feeling the pressure from your electric car-owning friends but there are still a lot of reasons to own a diesel.
Better MPG Over Long Journeys
Overall, diesel cars still come up trumps when it comes to long-distance mileage. Of course, if you’re looking at buying a new car, you should check the expected MPG of each vehicle. But on the whole, diesel cars are still a safer bet. If you’re traveling 15,000 miles or more a year, you’re probably better off keeping your diesel.
They’re Still Fine In Rural Areas
Older diesel cars (before 2015) have to pay a surcharge in London. Emission taxes are likely to come in in all major cities in the next decade (more on that below). However, rural areas aren’t going to be affected. If you rarely go into the city, owning a diesel isn’t going to be a big deal.
Large Diesel Vehicles Are More Fuel-Efficient
If you have an SUV or a people carrier, the torque and power in the lower range make a big difference to fuel economy.
They’re Generally Easier To Drive
In a diesel, you don’t have to rev the engine as hard to start the car move. That means there’s less chance of stalling, making them great for learners.
They’re Better For Towing
It’s long been known that diesel cars are better for caravan and trailer owners. The higher torque of the engine gives the car more pulling power
The Downsides Of Owning A Diesel Car
Of course, we wouldn’t be writing this article if there weren’t some downsides to owning a diesel car.
Euro 6 Emission Guidelines
This one’s a bit complicated. The Euro 6 law came into force on the 1st of September 2014. It’s a set of guidelines that controls the CO2 output of new diesel cars. However, there’s a bit of a loophole that means some diesel cars could be banned from the UK and European cities in the future. If your car was registered between 2014 and 2016, you should check the manufacturer of the vehicle to make sure that it meets the guidelines.
What Is The Diesel Toxin Tax?
In 2019, the first stage of the diesel Toxin Tax was laid out. It covers the same area as the Congestion Charge in London but could eventually be rolled out across all major UK cities. This area is called the Ultra-Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) and is only applicable to diesel cars that don’t meet the Euro 6 Emission Standard. The charge is £12.50.
As you can see, ensuring that your car meets the Euro 6 Emission Standard is an important factor in whether you should sell it. Not only will you have to pay a maximum of £7,552 (if you drive into London every day), but you will also face a potential ban from the UK and European cities in the future.
It’s important to note that these rules are often introduced in a major city like London and then rolled out across the country and Europe. Over the next decade, we could see a complete ban on older diesel cars in cities.
Reasons To Sell Your Diesel Car?
Prices Of Diesel Cars Are Falling
As a seller, you could be hit hard by falling prices of used diesel cars. As more regulations come into play and other forms of fuel become commonplace, you might not get that much for your second-hand diesel. Now could be the best time to sell, before more motorists are aware of the regulations. Having said that, there’s no indication that it will be difficult to get diesel from pumps in the future. Therefore, there’s no reason to go out and panic-sell – you could keep your car and run it into the ground. It’s also worth noting that the flipside of falling prices is that you might be able to find a ‘steal’ in a couple of years.
Europe Is Waging War Against The Diesel
If you’re planning to spend time driving across the continent, it’s probably a good time to consider selling. Over the next decade, 24 European cities (with a total population of 62 million people) will ban diesel cars. 13 of those cities will ban all internal combustion cars by 2030. We’ve already seen limited diesel car bans come into place in Paris, Madrid, and Hamburg, and it’s likely to spread.
Other Things To Consider
Some Diesel Cars Are Holding Their Value
After reading this article, don’t rush out and sell your car immediately. Classic and large-engined diesel cars are holding their value really well. Like we said before, there’s no indication that petrol stations are going to stop selling diesel all of a sudden. You might just face higher costs driving your car into London. If your pride and joy happen to run on diesel, you can keep it for a good few years yet. However, it’s worth keeping track of market trends and new taxations.
Electric Vehicles Can Save You Money
A recent study by the University of Leeds suggests that electric cars are cheaper to run over the long term than petrol and diesel cars. This is, in part, thanks to government subsidies, which could be taken away or added to. However, as a general market trend, the UK is becoming more favorable towards EVs and less favorable towards diesel and petrol cars. The trend is slow but you don’t want to be stuck with a car that you can’t sell further down the line.
Time Is Running For Diesel Cars In The City
London is the first UK city to tax diesel cars specifically, but we could start seeing similar taxations in Manchester, Birmingham, and other large UK cities. We’ve also seen a similar trend in European cities. The bottom line – if you can’t imagine a quiet life in the country, it’s probably time to invest in an electric car. And, if that doesn’t work out, you could always get a bicycle.