• Dec 12, 2010
Think fuel prices are high in the United States? What Yanks pay is nothing to what our former colonial masters are forced to shell out at the pumps, as reports come in of record-high prices in the UK.

According to the BBC, prices have hit an all-time high of 121.76p per liter in the United Kingdom. The numbers work out to $7.27 per gallon in American terminology, but the record doesn't take inflation into account. To put the current British petrol prices into perspective, consider that it will now cost English soccer moms in Chelsea over $163 (!) to fill up their BMW X5s.

The worst news for British motorists is that this isn't even the end of it: with both the Value Added Tax (VAT) and fuel duties scheduled to rise again in the new year, next month is anticipated to go even higher. As Edmund King, head of the UK's Automobile Association put it, "for those people dependent on road transport, it's not looking like a very happy Christmas or indeed New Year." Indeed.

[Source: BBC News | Andrew Yates/AFP/Getty]


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  • 116 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      Ride a bicycle instead.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Exercise your rights in your FREE country (lol) and vote to get more public transport.....do something positive and anti-brain dead for a change.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Well, they do get free college education (so far anyway), so it all works out evenly. LOL can already imagine the chaos when strikes on education fee AND gas price increases break out!
        • 4 Years Ago
        @THEWEEGEEAN: And that is exactly our problem here. I am not one of those people who thinks we should do everything the Euro way by any means, however, the oil and air lobbies have hobbled this country for decades.

        Why don't we have an efficient rail service with the latest technology (that we could export, btw) and why don't we have the large cars that we like with good mileage?

        On the mileage issue, until the Government forced the automakers to they swore they couldn't make cars for Americans with high mileage figures. Now, Lincoln's got a 40mpg luxury car. Trucks, all of a sudden, are in the twenties and have even more features.

        People don't ride trains and public transport because the special interests have been buying BOTH parties forever. In L.A. they people in Beverly Hills didn't want a subway going through there. There seemed to be a fear of maids and busboys getting to work easier (or something). NOW, everyone in L.A. County wants either a subway or light rail. Of course the twenty year delay means that it's going to cost taxpayers gazillions of more dollars.

        People have to understand that they pay for our government and instead of shouting to shut it down Teabagger style, they should be shouting for our government to actually serve us and our needs and level the playing field so that we get a word in edgewise.

        And for Chrissakes would someone put a diesel in a mainstream Ford and show Americans what we're missing?
        • 4 Years Ago
        HM Revenue & Customs to the english tax payer: Get VAT the program....


        sorry, couldn't resist...
        • 4 Years Ago
        er, that would be 'inclement' weather then. Thanks for trying though...
        • 4 Years Ago
        That might work in the U.K. but news like this makes me worried about what's going to happen in the U.S. In places near major metros it might be O.K. but in towns that are really spread out with poor public transit high gas prices are going to be a nightmare.

        My mom used to drive an F-150 to work, fifty miles away. She's switched down to an Escape. If prices ever get to $7.30 or higher here (or even $4.00 or $5.00) we'll have to switch to Albuquerque's Blue Line, and a bunch of other people will almost certainly follow suit since workplaces are so far away from homes. Will towns like Albuquerque be able to adapt to fuel prices fast enough? I don't think so.

        The transit center for the Blue Line in Albuquerque is already packed to capacity with cars from people all over the suburbs driving to the bus stop to get to the university, almost all day, to the point that they're spilling over to adjacent dirt lots. Service tends to usually be OK but it degrades as more and more people crowd onto the buses. Not only that, but a lot of the older people in this country have no idea how to use public transport and aren't used to trying to find a schedule or calling 311 to find out when the next bus arrives. The first time I used one I ended up getting lost, and it took a long time to take the right buses to get back home. And bikes aren't an option, period. There's no way you could get from Corrales to downtown on a bike.

        What I'm trying to say is that countries like the U.K. are prepared for using mass transit. America is not. And when fuel starts to become scarce enough that even bus rates end up rising, American cities don't have the infrastructure for heavy bike and pedestrian use. It's going to take a lot of work for our country to get ready for gas prices like me, and I worry we may not be able to do it fast enough to keep up.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Sure Tim, because that's always possible, right?

        It's not like anyone ever commutes long distances, requires the cargo space, needs to deal with in-climate weather, or is physically incapable of a bike ride.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Them petrol driving Brits need to start their own T(axed) E(nough) A(lready) Party...
      • 4 Years Ago
      wow that's a lot
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Nick: Who is the brainless one here? Your attack is very unfounded and rather ignorant. Frank is quite right, Socialism is not a political party, it's an economic model. The UK (and most European nations) ARE indeed socialist, and they will admit it right away. The entitle-ist way of life [here] in Europe has been straining the Euro and all other currencies for decades and it is reaching a fevered pitch, just look at Greece. I realize that since Obama was elected, anyone who throws the word Socialist out is INSTANTLY a bad guy, but read before you type please.

        Before you flame on Autoblog, THINK! There is no need to throw around insults in a forum. That is what a forum is; a collection of opinions, ideas, and thoughts.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @levine & mkarmy

        I think that the prime minister of the UK, David Cameron, from the conservative party, would be quite upset if he knew that you considered him to be a socialist.

        If you paid any attention to international news, you would know that there have been strong protests against the proposed raise in tuition fees. This typical conservative politics, and the protests against it, reminds me of the Thatcher era.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Nick,

        Maybe you could stop with the argumentum ad hominem attacks and explain to us where you think he is wrong. If you don't know what argumentum ad hominem means you can look it up. And by the way, socialism and democracy are not mutually exclusive. There are many Europeans who classify themselves as democratic socialists.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Britain has a socialist government. Socialism will fail when it can't spend anymore of other people's money. The high cost of petrol is caused by high petro taxes to fund socialism. All the PIIGS will have to raise revenue in the coming years. Their favorite is a tax on petro. Leaf and Think! couldn't have timed their inauguration better.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @levine

        Look up socislism in the dictionary before posting, you brainless cretin.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Wow, no wonder Clarkson hates american cars. We can have our big V8's and we don't have to break the bank to fill up our tanks.
      • 4 Years Ago
      We need those kinds of gas prices in the US to kick the addiction! Use the tax money for public transit!
        • 4 Years Ago
        WasAPasserBY: Hit this link, let me know if you have trouble understanding.

        http://www.bts.gov/publications/national_transportation_statistics/html/table_04_05.html
        • 4 Years Ago
        No we don't. Even though, our national fleet of autos (trucks included) continues to grow, we have been steadily reducing our annual fuel consumption.

        Cars like the Volt and Leaf suer as hell won't hurt the cause. Even the gas burning cars are helping, since each new model is more efficient than the model it replaces. More trains (highspeed rail) fewer planes.

        • 4 Years Ago
        @ GREEN...

        Yeah we do.
        • 4 Years Ago
        high gas prices would only hurt the economy more and would drive up prices on food, goods that are shipped and what ever else higher gas prices would effect. Needless to say higher gas prices are the last thing we need here in the USA!~ if any thing we need to drill for a lot more oil here in the USA to make sure gas prices do not get too high again !

        I still believe higher gas prices of 2008 was one of the main reasons the economy tanked here in the USA .
        JJ
        • 4 Years Ago
        @travisty

        Since 1980, we have added about 90 million people to our country. The gal/person ratio is declining.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Travisty: That was a silly comparison. Why stop at 1981, why not compare now to 1929?

        If you went year over year, over the last 5 years, the number of vehicles on the roads have increased, while the amount of fuel we consumed has dropped.

        I've read such an article in a AAA newsletter, which I can't put my hands on at this moment. Just go to AAA they track these stats.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Travisty: Here is why comparing 1980 to 2010 was utter nonsense. Take a good look at the number of vehicles registered then and in 2006.

        http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0004727.html
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Greenthumb - You're joking, right? We've gone from consuming 15m barrels / day in 1981 to almost 20m barrels / day today.

        http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/graphic/2008/07/26/GR2008072601599.html

        • 4 Years Ago
        @ Dr. Greenthumb

        [citation needed]
        • 4 Years Ago
        @farmer0904: Well then you give a partial or full exemption to businesses on a case by case basis. You are really naive to think high gas prices caused the recession...
      • 4 Years Ago
      That's why they drive vehicles that get 30-40mpg. You won't find many Dodge Ram pickups or Chevy Suburbans running around.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Actually, the MPG's over there are actually higher than that.

        The reason there are more diesels over there, is because people can't afford to have a car that doesn't get lower than 40 MPG.

        There are several options over there, that get combined 60-70 MPG.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Re Brian - They reckon a VW Polo Blue Motion is good for 70 mpg! the 3.5 tonne Fiat van that I use for my business has a 3lt Diesel and is good for 35/40mpg on a run.
      • 4 Years Ago
      And we wonder why the Brits get cars like the Polo BlueMotion (74.3mpg on a combined cycle).
      • 4 Years Ago
      The problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people's money.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Yeah? How's your government financed?!

        You're just parroting the worst nonsense about "socialism" there is, as if there was a difference between how our nations tax and use money.

        Oh, and I would hardly call it "other people's money" because in theory it's yours, mine and we're spending it on *our* state. In my peaceful, wealthy, little social-democracy, that's "socialist" to you, we tend to feel it's *our* money, we have a say in it, and we benefit. We before me.

        Of course, if you don't like it you can move to somewhere like the US where they'll treat you how you want to be treated, as a wage slave with a shelf-life. If you get sick, it's your problem. A place where people really don't want the state/community to help other people because it "costs" *them* tax money [that they no longer own].
      • 4 Years Ago
      And people b1tch about $4/gal.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Europe has always used high gas taxes in order to fund the post war welfare state – cradle to grave from Education to health care and everything in between; it started with reconstruction after WWII. When some people in North America use Europe as justification for high gas taxes they’re comparing apple and oranges. For starters: the sheer mass of the NA continent, the large geographic footprints of NA cities and distances required to travel between cities and states/provinces. You can basically drive anywhere in Western Europe in a day (barring traffic tie ups); you can’t same the same in NA. Europe doesn’t have high taxes gas to be green – makes for great public image – they need the revenue to pay for the comprehensive welfare State.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Yeah, right. Stockholm to Barcelona in a day.
        • 4 Years Ago
        That was a generality; it works for "most" of the major cities. For comparison the link below has an overlay of Europe and the continental US.

        http://goeurope.about.com/od/europeanmaps/l/bl-country-size-comparison-map.htm

        an approximate driving distance calculator:

        http://goeurope.about.com/library/bl-europe-distance-maps.htm

        What Palin is... is irrelevant


        • 4 Years Ago
        I can assure you, I'm aware of the distances between European cities, and the size of the United States. But I doubt the average American spends his or her week commuting between Memphis and Fairbanks or Miami and Des Moines. Most people's day-to-day travels take place within their own communities or regions. I doubt the average commute in London is much shorter than that of New York or Chicago. As for holiday travel, how often does someone in Boston drive to the West Coast? Or even Florida, for that matter? Most people fly these long distances.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Yes, that's what I was saying. You have vast distances in the US, but that doesn't mean that people are traversing them all the time. I was only pointing out that the distance between regions isn't a credible reason for such low petrol prices. In fact, whatever source you look at, the average annual distance traveled per car is almost the same in the US and the UK, at between 12,000 and 15,000 miles.
        • 4 Years Ago
        http://maps.google.co.uk/maps?hl=en&tab=wl

        It's difficult to make a 57 hour drive in one day...
      • 4 Years Ago
      I pay:

      -$3.00 a gallon
      -$1200 a year in property taxes
      -$100 a month for health care
      -$0 for car inspections (dont have them here in Oklahoma)
      -$60 a year for a car tag

      I feel pretty good about being here.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @bmxer10, and here in NJ I pay:

        $10,000 property tax per year (which actually by NJ standards is not that high),
        $3.00 a gallon,
        $780 per month for family health insurance (through my employer!!!) and the coverage still really sucks with high deductibles,
        $40 registration per year

        and I get to live in one of the least aesthetically, least environmentally friendly/highly polluted states, and my state gets to sponsor states such as yours while I get nothing in return as I make too much money to really get anything out from my taxes except maybe for unemployment insurance.

        If you didn't know, our country kind of works similar to European Union, all states have to pay certain amount of federal taxes to one pool and that pool gets divided accordingly to fund each state (basically richer states have to put in more money than they get out). http://www.taxfoundation.org/research/show/266.html Basically your Oklahoma is one of the welfare states.
        • 4 Years Ago
        $1200 a year in property tax??!

        It's about $5,000 a year in carollton (North Dallas) for a home under $200k. Almost half my monthly mortgage will be property tax.
      • 4 Years Ago
      i guess that happens when the government runs and dictates everyone lives over there...
      • 4 Years Ago
      Here ( Egypt )

      Prices were increased this year to 0.33$ per liter octane 92 and 0.4$ per liter

      in Galon terms :D
      $1.2 per Galon 92 - $1.48 per Galon 95

      and people almost made an uprising :D

      guess we should thank god and shutup :D
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