Car tax bands: what you need to know

Tax disc
28 Aug, 2014 9:30am Tom Goodlad

We give you a quick guide to car tax bands and costs

Knowing how much your car tax costs can be a confusing affair. Road tax is something almost all motorists need to pay, though - so here's a quick online guide to today's prices. 

Car tax, or Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) rates are based on either engine size or fuel type and CO2 emissions, depending on when the vehicle was registered. If your car was first registered before 1st March 2001, your car tax rate is based on the car's engine size - whether it is below or above 1,549cc. 

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Tax bands for cars registered after March 2001

If your car was registered on or after 1st March 2001, the rates are split into car tax bands depending on the carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions of the vehicle. These emissions are measured by how many grams are emitted from the exhaust for every kilometre travelled (g/km). 

In simple terms, the lower the car's emissions, the lower the vehicle tax band and the less you pay. There are two elements to tax rates, though. There's a main tax rate and a first year rate which can be more or less than the normal rate payable on new cars for the first 12 months of ownership. 

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In some cases, the first year will cost you nothing in tax, but the following year could land you with a higher rate, depending on the car's emissions. There are also separate tax bands for alternative fuel vehicles, motorcycles and commercial vehicles.

Our table below shows the standard rates of vehicle tax for cars registered on or after 1st March 2001 - you can calculate the tax rate for your car from this.

Current vehicle tax bands:

CO2 Emissions in g/km (tax band) First year rate Annual rate
Up to 100 (A) £0 £0
101-110 (B) £0 £20
111-120 (C) £0 £30
121-130 (D) £0 £110
131-140 (E) £130 £130
141-150 (F) £145 £145
151-165 (G) £180 £180
166-175 (H) £290 £205
176-185 (I) £345 £225
186-200 (J) £485 £265
201-225 (K) £635 £285
226-255 (L) £860 £485
Over 255 (M) £1,090 £500

Death of the car tax disc

From 1st October 2014, you will no longer need to display a paper tax disc in the windscreen of your car. Records will be fully electronic with automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) used to check if you're taxed. 

When it comes to renewal, motorists will have the option to pay biannually or monthly instead of an annual payment, but a surcharge is added to these options.

Read the full story on the death of the tax disc here...

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