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Should I still buy a diesel car?Back

Diesel car sales dropped by almost 20 per cent in 2017, but should we stop buying diesel cars right now, or do they remain a good option for car buyers?

Negativity plagued the media in 2017 about the emissions output of diesel cars and the threat of higher taxes for those who owned one, and as the general public caught on, diesel sales have subsequently suffered.

Buyers who would have been pushed towards a diesel car a few years ago, may now be thinking of avoiding one due to the threat of heavier taxes, but the current guidance on diesel cars remains unclear.

Below, Trusted Dealers provides information for prospective car buyers on the current pros and cons of buying a diesel car.

Diesel Cars: the facts

Diesel cars typically emit less CO2 emissions than petrol cars, but they produce more nitrogen oxides which can be harmful to people and the environment. Diesel emissions are thought to contribute to the early deaths of around 40,000 people in the UK every year.

In 2018, the situation remains that drivers of diesel cars are currently being hit with inflated taxes along with legislation to outlaw the use of these vehicles in the future.

In the Autumn Budget 2017, Chancellor Phillip Hammond imposed increases to car tax which will come into effect from next month. Diesel drivers will now face paying up to £500 more car tax as a result of this change.

Pros

  • New diesel cars that meet the EU6 standards are considerably less damaging to people’s health. Fitted with DPFs (Diesel Particulate Filters), new diesel cars are able to convert most of the toxins produced by the engine into harmless nitrogen and water.
  • Diesels are a more efficient option for those motorists who travel long distances on a regular basis. They are typically more economical than their petrol equivalent. For example, if you drive a diesel car more than 12,000 miles per year, you’ll save £1000 in the first 1-2 years of ownership.
  • In terms of emissions, diesel vehicles produce around 20 per cent les CO2 than petrol vehicles, but they do produce tiny particles that are associated with a number of breathing disorders such as asthma.
  • Diesel cars are known to retain their value better than petrol versions, giving them a higher resale value. However, with the threat of higher taxes imposed on diesel cars, this could no longer be the case in years to come.

Cons

  • If your mileage below 6,000 miles per year, it will take you several years to recoup the savings made from buying a diesel car. If you know you’ll only use your car to get from A to B then a petrol version is the better option, or if you want to go green, why not opt for an electric vehicle (EV).
  • With the rise of EVs and manufacturers constantly looking for ways to cut fuel emissions, it’s important to consider the effect of a diesel car on the environment. Unless you’re using your car for vehicle for journeys regularly, a diesel vehicle is not the best option for the environment.
  • Diesel cars typically cost more to buy than petrol cars, and maintenance costs can be higher as some issues on diesel vehicles may require a specialist mechanic which will incur additional cost.

Diesel cars can still be a viable option for many drivers. Financially then can provide more miles to the gallon and diesel engines are also better prepared for longer journeys.

If you are seeking a new or used car, Trusted Dealers advises buyers to take time to carefully consider your daily requirements and choose the right car to meet those needs.

Posted by Leana Kell on 23/03/2018