Free UK fuel prices. Over 8,000 petrol stations covered Mon, 12 Oct 2015 14:27:06 +0000 en-US hourly 1 More Bad Press for Diesel Vehicles Mon, 12 Oct 2015 14:27:06 +0000 Volkswagen emission scandal has brought into sharp focus just how polluting diesel vehicles can be. The weekend delivered various press reports about diesel cars. One article in Wales Online even discussed theDiesel prospect of pre-2015 diesels being banned in Wales by 2020, as their presence on the roads is likely to mean it’s impossible to meet previously agreed EU emissions targets. Meanwhile, The Independent reported on another diesel-related issue, which has been simmering away in the background for some time – the issue of motorists removing the diesel particulate filters from older diesel cars to reduce their servicing bills, resulting in huge increases in pollution. Diesel particulate filters prevent excess pollution entering the atmosphere from diesel cars. They typically have a lifespan of about 80,000 miles and, according to the article, cost around £1500 to replace. This is a significant bill for a car with 80,000 miles on the clock – in some cases potentially coming close to the value of the car. As such, it seems many drivers have arranged to have to filters removed instead, resulting in “tens of thousands” of cars pumping out far more pollution than they should be. Thanks to a loophole in the law, garages can remove the filters legally. It’s illegal to drive a car with the DPF removed, but it’s so difficult to detect the removal that the changes aren’t necessarily even noticed during MOT tests. Something tells us this isn’t the last diesel-related scandal we’re going to hear in the coming days and weeks. IMAGE CREDIT: Wikipedia]]> 0 Car Insurance Costs Up by Nearly Five Percent Fri, 09 Oct 2015 11:43:39 +0000 Yahoo News report has revealed that average premiums for fully comprehensive policies have risen 4.8% in the last quarter, the most significant rise in five years. The average cost of a fully comprehensive policy is now up to £629 per year. Policies for third party, fire and theft are also up by 7% this quarter.Car Insurance Unfortunately, motorists can expect further increases, due to the forthcoming introduction of an increase to the insurance premium tax, due next month. The Yahoo article doesn’t go into the reasons why insurance costs are rising, however, we ourselves reported back in August why drivers could soon expect increases in their premiums. One reason is that cheaper fuel tends to result in people driving more, resulting in more traffic and more accidents. In addition, there seems to be a resurgence in “ambulance chasing,” with false whiplash claims on the rise again, despite efforts by the government to introduce legislation to curtail the activities of questionable “no win, no fee” lawyers. So, with all this in mind, remember to shop around when your car insurance is next up for renewal – you may need to put a little effort in to ensure your premium doesn’t increase. IMAGE CREDIT: Wikipedia]]> 0 Could the VW Scandal Spread to Petrol Vehicles? Thu, 08 Oct 2015 10:50:58 +0000 report in The Telegraph. The report cites the fact that, to begin with, Volkswagen claimed that just under half a million cars were affected by the scandal. That figure has already risen to 11 Million. Greg Archer, a “former government advisor” is quoted as suggesting that the scandal “is probably not limited to diesel and not limited to emissions.” This suggests that it could transpire that so-called “defeat devices” were used on petrol cars too. If Archer is correct, this enormous scandal could blow up into something truly monumental. Unsurprisingly,Volkswagen many people are also starting to wonder if other car manufacturers have engaged in questionable practices alongside VW. One of history’s biggest car recalls will soon be underway, with VW (and its other linked brands, Audi, Skoda and Seat) due to contact owners affected by the scandal. It’s expected that cars will begin to be recalled to garages for alterations early next year. Meanwhile, Auto Express has reported that the head of VW in the US allegedly knew about the “cheating” devices as far back as early last year. If you own a Volkswagen, Audi, Seat or Skoda, you may want to check out the manufacturer’s website to see if your car is subject to any recall notices. You will need your Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) to do so, which is usually stamped on the car’s windscreen. IMAGE CREDIT: Wikimedia Commons]]> 0 UK Car Sales at Record Highs Wed, 07 Oct 2015 17:53:03 +0000 thought, in any meaningful way, to be connected to the Volkswagen diesel scandal, which didn’t break until 18th September. Most of the brand new cars sold last month would have been pre-ordered anyway. However, it’s likely that figures for future months will show a downturn for diesel vehicles – especially from VW and its subsidiaries. The three most popular cars to come off the production lines last month were the Ford Fiesta, the Vauxhall Corsa and the Ford Focus. Another key finding from the statistics (reported by The Guardian) is a significant increase in sales for plug-in vehicles and hybrids. Sales of these were up by 21.7% Although this is up from a relatively low starting figure, it’s still pleasing to see people choosing a more environmentally friendly option, especially when there is plenty to suggest that petrol prices will stay quite low for the time being. IMAGE CREDIT: Wikimedia Commons]]> 0 US Drivers Show a Renewed Appetite for Gas Guzzling Vehicles Tue, 06 Oct 2015 11:29:11 +0000 recent Reuters report. The average miles per gallon figure of cars sold in the US is down by 0.6mpg compared to the figure from Gas GuzzlersAugust last year. This may not sound like a hugely significant number, but it’s rather more revealing when you consider the fact that manufacturers are constantly working to improve fuel economy. More to the point, drivers are choosing pickups, “crossovers” and SUVs, rather than vehicles that are cheaper to run, encouraged by a long-term trend towards cheaper fuel. This seems to suggest that power and space are given higher priority by the average car-buyer than environmental concerns. According to the report, the same is happening in China, where sales of SUVs, in particular, are up 44% against general car sales, which are only up by 3% How long this trend continues will depend on how long fuel prices remain low. People also tend to drive more when fuel costs less. A reversal in fuel price trends could quickly see people both driving less and seeking out more economical options. But, for now at least, it seems like gas guzzlers are ruling the roost once again. IMAGE CREDIT: Wikipedia  ]]> 0 Petrol and Diesel Costs Switch Places Once Again Mon, 05 Oct 2015 12:15:15 +0000 reported by This is Money and backed up by our own figures. For the past couple of months, diesel drivers have (at least in some garages) been able to find diesel costing less Petrol and dieselthan unleaded, but this trend hasn’t stuck. Unleaded is now around a penny per litre cheaper on average. According to RAC figures, diesel has actually edged up by around 0.5 pence per litre recently, while unleaded has fallen by around two pence per litre. According to the This is Money report, this has been caused by a reduction in demand for unleaded in the US, which has brought down wholesale prices. Despite this change, which won’t please diesel drivers, it’s worth remembering that the general trend is downwards for both fuels. Compared to July, diesel owners are paying, on average, £5.65 less for a full tank of fuel, and petrol car owners are paying £4 less. More savings are expected too; Wholesale prices are still falling, and as we’ve previously reported, the supermarkets are continuing a battle to attract customers with petrol price caps and loyalty promotions. IMAGE CREDIT: Wikimedia Commons]]> 0 Volkswagen Withdraws Cars from Sale in the UK Fri, 02 Oct 2015 09:44:29 +0000 reported on last week continues to grab headlines. The latest news pertaining specifically to the UK is that sales of 4000 new vehicles are to be “suspended” according to a Sky News report. These are cars with a specific engine, model EA189. As suspected right at the beginning, the scandal has now spread to other marques under the Volkswagen banner, VWincluding Skoda, Audi and Seat. VW have confessed that over 10 Million vehicles worldwide are fitted with technology that has allowed them to “cheat” on diesel emissions tests. The UK isn’t the first nation to suspend sales. Certain VW brand models have already been withdrawn from the market in the US, Canada and Switzerland. Next comes the big recall, predicted to be one of the largest in motoring history. The fear is that after corrective work, some people may find their cars are less economical and do not perform as well as before. 1.2 Million cars are expected to be recalled in the UK alone, with owners expecting to hear from VW from next week. Two big questions occur: The first is whether Volkswagen will ever truly recover from this scandal. The second is the major elephant in the room – namely whether this “cheating” has been exclusive to the VW group, or whether, in time, we’ll find other manufacturers implicated in similar scandals. If any other brands do have skeletons in their closets, it’s unlikely their executives are getting much sleep right now… IMAGE CREDIT: Wikimedia Commons]]> 0 UK Car Smoking Ban Begins Today Thu, 01 Oct 2015 09:56:07 +0000 BBC report, the authorities have stated that they will be taking a “non-confrontational approach” to enforcement. It’s not completely clear what this will mean in practice – in some circles people believe it means that the law won’t actually be enforced. Even so, the law should emphasise people’s moral duty not to expose children to second-hand smoke in their cars.Car Smoking Ban Although one would assume most smokers would refrain from lighting up in cars with their children, the British Lung Foundation state that nearly half a million under-18s have to share cars with smokers each week. Two exceptions apply to the law: one is an exemption for convertibles with the roof open, and another for e-cigarettes, which produce vapour rather than smoke. It remains to be seen just how seriously drivers and police will take this new legislation. In the BBC report, the Police Federation chairman states that the police are “struggling to attend burglaries” with their current resources. One wonders, on that basis, how they’re going to have the time to catch people having a cheeky cigarette in their own cars, even if the well-intentioned law is intended to protect the health of children. IMAGE CREDIT: Wikimedia Commons]]> 0 Sainsbury’s Launch a New Fuel Promotion Wed, 30 Sep 2015 11:25:08 +0000 report in The Express. It’s interesting to see a supermarket chain use a gimmicky loyalty card promotion to promote fuel once again, Sainsburys Petrolafter Tesco ended their “Fuel Save” deal earlier this year. The fact that Sainsbury’s are introducing this deal seems to indicate the supermarkets feel they need to attract customers for other reasons beyond price alone. The Nectar deal is well timed, with summer out of the way and thoughts turning to the winter holiday season. Many people collect their loyalty points and use them at Christmas, so this gives people an opportunity to increase their balances. Every litre of fuel purchased at Sainsbury’s this month will equate to Nectar points worth five pence. It wouldn’t surprise us at all if we now see other supermarkets come up with similar offers. People have to buy their fuel somewhere, so if prices are similar, these enticements can prove quite effective. The customer can only benefit from the increased competition, so hopefully we’ll have other similar incentives to report on soon! IMAGE CREDIT: Geograph    ]]> 0 Motorway Fuel Price Displays on the Way Tue, 29 Sep 2015 14:48:28 +0000 article in The Times suggests that the presence of these displays could “end rip-offs.”  Motorway petrol prices While it seems unlikely that fuel at motorway service areas will drop in price to match costs available nearer to towns, this added transparency may well stimulate competition and can only be a good thing for drivers. These roadside price displays are already in use in several other countries, including Portugal, where they are commonplace on major motorways. The new signs are being placed on a trial basis. The plans were actually announced under the previous coalition government at the end of last year, but confirmation of the signs going up on the M5 “this winter” appeared in The Times today. The report also states that the average motorway services fill up costs as much as £8 more than it would elsewhere. Anything that could be done to reduce this sum is sure to be a hit with drivers, so let’s hope this trial results in a national roll-out. IMAGE CREDIT: Geograph]]> 0