Classic car owners face a ‘huge bill’ of up to £650 per year to drive their cars in London

Classic car owners face a ‘huge bill’ of up to £650 per year to drive their cars in London

05/14/2021

Sadiq Khan outlines why ULEZ has come into force in London

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Classic owners have the choice to either pay the huge bill or could be forced to face “the wrench” of having to sell their historic models. The new Ultra Low Emissions Zone changes will come into force from the end of October this year and could provide a headache for owners.

From 25 October 2021, the Ultra Low Emission Zone will be extended to cover everywhere between the A406 North Circular and A205 South Circular Roads.

Motorists who travel in the zone without meeting the emissions requirement will have a £12.50 daily charge.

Experts at Hagerty say up to 60,000 vehicles could be affected by the changes, including classic cars.

They warn many owners could be priced out of London as drivers will face heavy fees for using their car on a regular basis.

The scheme will be monitored 24 hours a day, seven days a week by around 1,400 cameras.

Hagerty estimates driving a non-compliant car under the scheme will see drivers face costs of up to £650 per year.

This is more than many drivers’ car insurance policy and road tax fees combined.

James Mill, Hagerty UK Editor said many drivers will feel “hard done by” once they are forced to pay extra charges.

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They said the extra cost for classic car owners would seem “heavy-handed” due to the “small volumes” of classic cars remaining on the road.

He said: “Many owners of cherished vehicles that travel insignificant distances each year will feel hard done by if they’re caught in the ULEZ expansion.

“People have emotional connections to cars and bikes, may have invested blood, sweat and tears – not to mention a significant sum of money – to maintain and preserve them for future generations.

“Yet they face a huge bill to drive the pride and joy just once a week.

“Or they face the wrench of having to sell the vehicle.

“Given the small volumes of cherished vehicles involved, which individually generate less CO2 annually that a mobile phone or personal computer, the ULEZ rules will strike some as seeming heavy-handed.”

Historic vehicles over the age of 40 years old on the 25 October will not have to pay the new charges.

However, Hagerty says there will “undoubtedly” be less cars from the 1980s, 1990s and early noughties in London when the charge is introduced.

They said it is possible for cars to be adapted to comply with ULEZ regulations but this would likely be expensive.

Petrol cars must meet the Euro 4 emissions standard introduced to road cars from 2005.

Meanwhile, diesel drivers must meet the Euro 6 compliance rules which were introduced in 2015 to avoid the charge.

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