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petrol or diesel

You’ve decided that leasing a car is for you. Now you have to choose between petrol and diesel.

 As with every decision we make, it is important that we consider several factors. When deciding between a petrol and diesel car - you will need to focus on what you want your car to do for you.

Do you need it to transport you hundreds of miles a week for work? Is a powerful engine something you can’t live without? Or is keeping to a fixed budget paramount?

Times are changing within the car industry. Advances in technology are helping petrol engines close the performance gap with diesel. And diesel engines are making improvements in order to deal with their recently diagnosed emission problems.

Petrol: Things to consider

  1. Fuel Economy: If you work locally and only use your car for ‘city driving’ then leasing a petrol car is recommended. Petrol engines cope better with the stopping and starting nature of driving around town. And if you drive less than 5,000 miles every year– petrol is the best choice for you.
  2. Residual Value: In the past, petrol cars have tended to lose their value more than their diesel counterparts. Though it does depend on what type of petrol car - sports cars for example - typically have a good resale value (and sports cars should always be petrol say the die-hards!). But, due to new concerns regarding air-pollution the residual value of diesel vehicles is expected to decline. However, if you are leasing, then residual value is only a consideration if you plan to purchase your vehicle at the end of the lease.
  3. Expensive Over Long Distances: The main disadvantage of the petrol car is that they are not economical when doing long journeys.
  4. Clean Air: Petrol vehicles produce more of the greenhouse gas Carbon Dioxide – one of the causes of climate change. However, recent discoveries regarding diesel emissions - mean that there is little to choose between the two in terms of limiting harm to the environment.
  5. Repair Costs: Petrol cars cost less to repair than diesel, but they may need to be repaired more often. As the petrol engine continues to improve in reliability – the gap will narrow.
  6. City Driving: Petrol vehicles are more suited to city driving than diesel.
  7. Power: Petrol cars tend to be quicker going from 0-60, but as a rule, they are still less powerful than diesel. However, advances in their engines mean that some smaller petrol engines can now be as powerful as a larger diesel one.
  8. Initial Costs: Petrol cars are usually cheaper to buy than diesel; but can be more expensive to lease. Obviously, this will depend on the model and where it is purchased/leased.
  9. Tax: Petrol cars compared to their diesel equivalent registered before April 2017 are more expensive to tax. This is because before April 2017 all tax rates were based on CO2 emissions, leaving many diesel vehicles exempt or charged at a low rate. For newer cars that were registered after April 2017 – petrol vehicles are cheaper to tax for the first year than diesel, then charged at a standard rate of £140.
  10. Cheaper Insurance: Petrol cars cost around 10-15% less than diesel to insure. This is because diesel cars tend to have higher accident repair costs and are generally more expensive to replace if the car is stolen.

Part 2 Coming Soon: Choosing a Diesel Car

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Posted on 1st March 2019 at 5:48 PM

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