The capital's Congestion Charge is set for a shake-up, linking a new incremental system to a car’s C02 emissions as well as ending the automatic hybrid exclusion.
Models that emit 120g/km or less will be exempt from the £8-a-day charge, while those producing more than 225g/km would take a massive £25 hit. At a stroke it would remove the anomaly where a large Lexus 4x4 hybrid sidesteps the toll while a low-capacity, modern diesel with lower emissions pays full whack.
Residents of central London currently receive a 90% discount, meaning they pay around £170 per year unless their car is exempt. Under the new proposals, residents with cars emitting 225g/km or more will be liable to pay the full charge – that’s over £5000 per year.
The rule change also fails to take occupancy into consideration. Whereas a Citroen C1 carrying just one person would enter the zone for free, a full seven-seat SUV is heavily penalised.