Diesel owners feel

let down

Fuelling up

MANY UK diesel car owners are angry with the government for its change in policy on diesel cars which, they say, has directly hit their pockets.

According to a new Opinium survey, commissioned by InsuretheGap.com, a leading supplier of GAP (Guaranteed Asset Protection) insurance for new and second-hand cars, over one in four (28 per cent) report their car's re-sale value is now significantly below its petrol equivalent; and 23 per cent said they have lost money on their car since the government announced the new diesel regulations.

As well as anger, the survey also revealed that diesel car owners do not trust advice received from the government.

Over half (56 per cent) said they bought a diesel car in good faith thinking they were helping the environment, with over 55s (68 per cent) most strongly citing this.

In 1997, the UK government started promoting diesel as a more environmentally friendly fuel than petrol in part due to its signing of the Kyoto Protocol and commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

However, in recent years diesel's toxic emissions have become an accepted health hazard and many European countries are preparing to ban diesel cars from city centres.

Over half (55 per cent) of diesel owners reported feeling betrayed by the government's mixed messaging and a third (35 per cent) said they were concerned that they would not trust its advice for their next car.

According to the Society of Motor Manufactures and Traders (SMMT), there are 12 million diesel cars on Britain's roads, however February's new car registrations showed that diesel accounts for just 35 per cent of the market, compared to 50 per cent six years ago.

Ben Wooltorton, chief operating officer of InsuretheGap.com, said: "Diesel cars are currently the villains of the motor industry, despite the government once championing them.As 2040 rapidly approaches, when the sale of all new diesel and petrol cars will be banned, drivers need a clear and consistent long-term motoring policy from the government to ensure they don't feel let-down again."

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