Cities across the UK poised to bring in new car tax charges affecting more drivers

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London’s Ultra Low Emission Zone is set to expand on Monday, October 25, with hybrid cars no longer getting a 100 percent discount in the Congestion Charge Zone. Both of these measures are being implemented by Transport for London (TfL) to cut vehicle emissions as much as possible.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan said that since the introduction of the ULEZ in 2019, they have managed to reduce the toxic air in central London by almost half.

The existing central London Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) will expand to create a single larger zone up to, but not including, the North Circular Road (A406) and South Circular Road (A205).

The ULEZ operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week, every day of the year except Christmas Day (25 December). 

At a daily cost of £12.50, the ULEZ charge is applicable every day, in the same way as the Congestion Charge.

READ MORE: Drivers set for ‘nasty surprise’ as half are unaware of car tax change

“There are a wide range of exemptions and discounts, but motorists in the capital whose vehicles qualify to have to pay the ULEZ fee may also have to pay the Congestion Charge as well, depending on where and when they are driving, and what type of vehicle they have.

“The costs can really mount up, depending on how many days they need to use their vehicle in these designated areas, so it’s useful to highlight what is happening.”

This comes as other cities are looking to introduce similar car tax measures, with Portsmouth becoming the latest city to introduce measures to tackle air pollution.

Portsmouth is set to launch its own Clean Air Zone on November 29, with high-polluting private hire vehicles and taxis being charged £10.

Buses, coaches and lorries face a £50 fee for travelling through the zone, in the south-west of the city.

A number of other cities have set out plans to launch a CAZ in their area, following in the footsteps of Bath who launched theirs in March and Birmingham in June.

Whilst some cities did plan on implementing a CAZ this year, many have put plans on hold as a result of people needing time to rebound from the pandemic.

Bradford, Bristol, Greater Manchester, Stoke-on-Trent and Newcastle are expected to launch a clean air car tax zone in 2022.

Oxford are expected to be even bolder with their plans and introduce a Zero Emission Zone (ZEZ).

The pilot is set to go live in February 2022 and will cover a number of roads surrounding the High Street.

The ZEZ pilot means polluting vehicles will be charged if driven in key city centre streets between the hours of 7am – 7pm, seven days a week.

Under the ZEZ pilot, those who drive polluting vehicles into the zone will be charged, with the level of the charge dependent on how polluting the vehicle is.

With this, any zero emission cars, such as electric cars, will not be charged to drive in the zone.

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