Fuel costs remain a major concern for motorists, according to new research conducted by vehicle remarketing company BCA.
Three quarters of used car buyers polled in March claimed the price of fuel was their biggest worry when it came to motoring costs and more than a third were frustrated by the lack of action by the Government to tackle fuel prices.
Three quarters of motorists use their car every day and one in five drivers are particularly concerned about the rising costs of motoring because they rely on their car for their work.
The research revealed that top five concerns about motoring costs were:
1. The price of fuel
2. The cost of Road Tax
3. Insurance costs
4. Vehicle maintenance & servicing
With pressure on finances, the research also revealed that motorists are taking their own steps to try to reduce costs, with 29% saying they now only make essential car journeys - school runs, food shopping, going to work, and so on. More than half use their car less for non-essential travel; while 20% said they use public transport more and 23% walk more.
Prudence has also taken over when it comes to filling up at the pumps. Over a quarter said that they now only purchase the amount of fuel needed, rather than filling up the tank on each visit to the petrol station. And one in four also searches online for the cheapest petrol station before heading out to fill up.
Changing to a more fuel efficient vehicle also appears to be a growing trend, according to the BCA research, with 15% saying they have already taken this step. Nearly one in five have changed to a diesel car to cut motoring costs.
"It’s clear from our survey that motorists are continuing to feel the financial pinch, as the costs of running a car continue to rise," says Tim Naylor, editor of the BCA Used Car Market Report. "While the price of fuel still tops the list of concerns regarding motoring costs, 31% said that maintenance and servicing costs were a key issue. A quarter have delayed repairs to their car to save money and 23% have avoided recommended service intervals."
Naylor added: "However, motorists should remember that when they sell their car, buyers will place a significant value on a service history. BCA estimates that a full service history is worth up to £500 for the typical five-year old, 60,000 mile car valued around £7,000. Saving now may cost you more in the future."