If you use a vehicle on the roads in the UK then you will have to have a valid tax disc for that vehicle. Whether you drive a car, van, motorcycle, bus or articulated lorry you will need to have a valid tax disc.
Our guide looks at the cost of road tax for cars from 1 April 2011.
Cars registered before 1 March 2001
If your car was registered before March 2001 there are just two rates of road tax, depending on the engine size of your vehicle:
- Engine size is under 1549cc you’ll pay £130 for 12 months tax and £71.50 for 6 months
- Engine size is over 1549cc you’ll pay £215 for 12 months and £118.25 for 6 months
Cars registered after 1 March 2001
Vehicle tax rates for cars registered on or after 1 March 2001 are now split into 13 bands depending on the car’s CO2 emissions. The amount of road tax you’ll pay depends on which band your car is in. The lower the CO2 emissions from your car, the lower the car tax payable on it.
To find out the CO2 emissions of your car, you can either check your registration certificate (V5C) or enter the model and registration number of your car at the DVLA website.
For cars with CO2 emissions up to 100g/km, no car tax is payable. There are then 12 further bands and the cost of car tax rises as the CO2 emissions increase.
For example, a standard 2 litre diesel Toyota Corolla registered in 2004 would be in band G with 151g/km CO2 emissions. You would pay £155 for 12 months tax on this vehicle, or £85.25 for 6 months.
Cars with CO2 emissions under 225 g/km (or cars with higher emissions registered before 23 March 2006) will pay a maximum of £250 for 12 months tax.
Cars with high CO2 emissions pay significantly more road tax under the current scheme. Cars emitting 226-255 g/km of CO2 pay £425 for 12 months car tax while those emitting over 256 g/km pay £450 every year.
Enhanced car tax for cars first registered after 1 April 2010
Brand new cars registered after 1 April 2010 with CO2 emissions of over 130 g/km attract a higher rate of car tax in the first year.
For example, the tax on a brand new car with CO2 emissions of 210 g/km would be £580 in the first year, compared to £250 if the car was several years old.