On 8th April 2019 Transport for London (TfL) introduced changes that affect drivers in central London. Tfl have introduced the Ultra Low Emmissions Zone (ULEZ), which for now mirrors the Congestion Charging Zone although is set to expand in 2021, and a new fee which replaces the old T-Charge. The ULEZ fee is applicable 24 hours a day,7 days a week unlike the Congestion Charge which only applies from 7am to 6pm Monday to Friday, and at £12.50 per day is on top of the Congestion Charge of £11.50 meaning motorists could now be paying £24 per day to drive in central London.
Other changes announced included removing the Congestion Charge exemption for private hire Taxi's, including those operating for Uber, which could in the short term significantly increase the costs for passengers or the number of available private hire taxis prepared to make the journey.
Why are Tfl doing this?
To combat air pollution. By tightening regulations and charging people who drive vehicles that emit higher levels of pollutng gases the hope is that traffic volumes of these cars will fall and air quality will improve.
Are all vehicles affected by the ULEZ?
No, there are some exemptions as the newest petrol and diesel engined vehicles are exempt from the ULEZ fee. Petrol engined vehicles that meet Euro 4 level (most cars first registered after 2005) and diesel engined vehicles that meet Euro 6 (most models first registered after 2015) are exempt but anything earlier is likely to have pay, although there are some discounts and exemptions available for some people. You can check your car at https://tfl.gov.uk/modes/driving/emissions-surcharge/compliance-checker. You don't need to do anything if your vehicle is not affected by this charge..
What about electric or hybrid vehicles?
For those vehicles that do not rely solely on petrol or diesel, like the Outlander PHEV, then they are more than likely exempt but it is best to check with Transport for London. All Outlander PHEVs are exempt but do need to be registered with TfL to qualify for exemption from the Congestion Charge..
We are happy to confirm that every new vehicle we sell is exempt from the ULEZ fee so if you are interested in changing your car or pickup then please give us a call on 01732 870711 and we can arrange a test drive for you.
More information is available from https://tfl.gov.uk/modes/driving/ultra-low-emission-zone including details on other types of vehicles such as vans, lorries and motorcycles.