New data released today shows the average cost of filling a 55-litre family car has now passed the £100 mark – something the RAC has labelled a “truly dark day” for motorists.
Yesterday, the RAC warned motorists across Great Britain and Northern Ireland to brace themselves for higher petrol and diesel prices at the pumps.
The RAC’s fuel spokesperson Simon Williams once again called on the Chancellor of the Exchequer to impose a fuel duty cut or introduce a temporary reduction in VAT to give some respite to already hard-pressed road users.
“It’s a truly dark day today for drivers with petrol now crossing the thoroughly depressing threshold of £100 a tank (£100.27p). A complete diesel fill-up now costs £103.43,” he said.
“With average prices so high – 182.31p for a litre of unleaded and 188.05p for diesel – there’s almost certainly going to be upward inflationary pressure which is bad news for everybody.
“While fuel prices have been setting new records on a daily basis, households up and down the country may never have expected to see the cost of filling an average-sized family car reach three figures.
“With RAC research showing as many as eight-in-10 depend on their cars many must be wondering if any further financial support from the Government will be forthcoming.
“March’s 5p fuel duty cut now looks paltry as wholesale petrol costs have already increased by five-times that amount since the Spring Statement (25p).
“A further duty cut or a temporary reduction in VAT would go a long way towards helping drivers, especially those on lower incomes who have no choice other than to drive.
“It’s also important to remember that the Government is still benefitting from the high fuel prices by taking around 30p in VAT from every litre sold.
“This compares to just 25p before Russia invaded Ukraine. On top of this the Government is still collecting 53p fuel duty from every litre.”
Williams also warned that motorists can no longer rely on supermarket-owned forecourts to keep prices competitive given that demand for crude oil currently outstrips supply.
“Other price records were also unfortunately set on Wednesday as the average of a litre of unleaded at a supermarket jumped 2.5p to 175.91p while diesel increased by nearly 2p to 184.13p,” he added.
“As we expected, other supermarkets raised their prices yesterday in line with the increases made by Asda.”