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Do electric vehicles pay road tax?

If you’re assessing the cost of an electric vehicle (EV) prior to purchasing one you may be wondering how they measure up in terms of Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) known colloquially as road tax. In the next sections, we’ll explore road tax for electric vehicles including how much it costs and how it’s calculated.

Road tax in brief

VED or road tax is calculated according to three key factors, its list price, the year it was first registered and the CO2 emissions that issue from your vehicle’s exhaust.

For this reason, vehicles that operate entirely on electric batteries, also known as BEVs, are fully exempt from paying road tax.

How is road tax worked out?

Road tax is calculated based on CO2 exhaust emissions for cars and other vehicles that were registered after March 2001. For vehicles registered prior to March 2001, road tax calculations are made according to engine size.

As mentioned, fully electric vehicles issuing zero-emissions do not have to pay road tax. Hybrid electric vehicles, however, must pay a more modest amount in road tax, but if they cost £40,000 or over to buy, hybrid car owners will find they need to pay an additional amount annually for five years starting the second time the vehicle pays road tax.

How much does road tax cost for an EV?

To sum up, ever since spring 2020, zero-emission electric vehicles such as pure electric battery vehicles haven’t paid a penny in road tax for their first and each subsequent year they’ve been on the road and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future.

Plug-in hybrid electric cars, however, will typically pay somewhere between £0 and £100 in their first year although it depends on their CO2 emissions. For each year after they will pay £140. A premium rate is added to how much road tax a hybrid electric owner will pay if their vehicle is worth £40,000 for the initial five years the car is on the road and this is supplementary to any road tax already due as standard for hybrids.

Photo: Free image by Pixabay

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