Stealth taxes ‘could kill cars’
THE Prime Minister revealed at this week’s British Motor Show that he wants all new cars to be electric by 2020 – and that could explain the thinking behind the Government’s current tax policies.
But according to a survey by the AA, 82 per cent of motorists in the Britain now believe that motoring taxes are stealth moves with little or no benefit to drivers.
More than a third of the 15,000 members surveyed said that they no longer understand the system of annual Vehicle Excise Duty, which demands various levels of payment according to CO2 emissions.
A few cars are exempt whilst most pay substantially more and some incur massive increases.
One of the biggest outcries came from the announcement that cars bought years ago will face huge tax hikes.
AA president Edmund King has written to the Government requesting that the ‘retrospective’ nature of Vehicle Excise Duty for cars registered between 2001-2006 should be scrapped.
He points out that the tax will be so high that older high-polluting cars will become worthless so their owners will have no choice but to keep them and to continue running them, which will raise CO2 levels.
The results sent to the Government show:
Commenting on the results, Mr King, says, ‘More than three quarters of motorists now see road tax as a ‘stealth tax.’ We believe that the retrospective nature of the tax increases for cars registered between 2001-6 should be scrapped before it comes a ’10p tax on wheels’. The Government should also provide more user-friendly information to inform car buyers of changes to VED over the next two years. Our concern is that people may be buying cars today that they may not know will fall into much higher bands in 2009 and 2010.”
The motoring organisation says it has had a record number of hits on its website from motorists desperately trying to find out how proposed changes to the VED system will affect them.
‘Even though the public and indeed the AA accept that a tax system based on CO2 can influence the choice of vehicle, there is confusion, mistrust and lack of information about the proposals.
‘If the retrospective increases in tax go ahead in 2009/2010 then there is the possibility that many motorists might be driving to the polls still fuming from excessive tax increases to the cars they bought before these tax changes were proposed.’
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