Which cars are exempt from the London Ultra Low Emission Zone?
MOTORS driving in London may have to pay a fee to enter the very low emission zone if their car is too old for the new pollution rules.
The original Ultra-Low Emission Zone, or ULEZ, originally covered a small area in the center of town.
But starting October 25, all streets on the North Circular and South Circular routes will be included.
What is ULEZ?
ULEZ is an area of ââLondon where only modern and efficient cars are allowed to enter.
Drivers of older vehicles will have to pay a fee of Â£ 12.50 or find another way to enter the capital.
London has air pollution issues, and Transport for London (TfL) hopes the charge will reduce pollution and improve air quality.
Thousands of people in the city breathe life-threatening toxins.
TfL also hopes to raise funds for public transport projects using the proceeds from the lucrative new fee.
Who has to pay the ULEZ fee?
ULEZ charges only apply to people driving non-compliant older cars, which are normally much more polluting than newer cars.
Newer cars will meet ULEZ standards and will be allowed to enter the zone free of charge.
And all fully electric cars are exempt from the charge, but drivers of some hybrid cars will have to pay the charge.
The rules are slightly different for gasoline cars, diesel cars and motorcycles.
If you forget to pay the ULEZ fee, you could have to pay a fine of Â£ 160, which is reduced to Â£ 80 if paid within fourteen days.
What are the ULEZ standards?
Petrol cars must meet Euro 4 emission standards, which were introduced in 2006 for normal cars.
Generally speaking, this means that petrol cars first registered in 2005 or later will be able to travel in the ULEZ zone without the charge of Â£ 12.50.
Diesel cars have to meet more stringent Euro 6 standards, which were introduced later.
This means that most diesel cars first registered in 2015 will be able to travel in the ULEZ without the charge of Â£ 12.50.
Gasoline or diesel cars first registered before these dates may not comply and could violate the new strict rules.
Motorcycles must meet Euro 3 emissions standards, which were made mandatory in 2007. Scooters, mopeds and motorcycles registered before that date may violate ULEZ rules.
And motorists driving cars, vans, motorcycles or mopeds registered after these dates should always check ULEZ compliance on the TfL website be certain.
The âEuroâ standard applicable to your vehicle can be entered on the V5 document.
Do I have to pay the ULEZ charge in my brand new car?
Most motorists driving cars built recently – within the past five years – will be able to travel to the ULEZ area for free.
There are some exceptions to this rule, including specialized vehicles and some cars individually imported from abroad.
Most passenger cars made by mainstream brands over the past five years will be able to fit into ULEZ without the driver paying Â£ 12.50.
Some fifteen year old vehicles are compliant. Drivers should check on the TfL website.
My car is old, do I have to pay the ULEZ charge?
If you drive an older car or motorcycle – a diesel built before 2015, a gasoline car built before 2006, or a motorcycle built before 2007 – you may need to pay the fee and check before you travel to London.
If your vehicle is over 40 years old, you can request that your vehicle be added to the historical tax class.
This status means that you will no longer need to pay vehicle tax. It also means that you don’t need to pay ULEZ fees when driving in London.
All vehicles built before January 1, 1973 will be exempt from the ULEZ license fee.
I have an electric car. Do I have to pay the ULEZ?
Electric cars are exempt from the ULEZ charge.
This includes all consumer electric vehicles of any age, as well as any vehicle that has been properly converted and registered as a battery car.
Motorists are encouraged to adopt electric cars instead of gasoline or diesel models, especially if they frequently drive in urban areas.
Are hybrid cars exempt from the ULEZ charge?
Gasoline-electric hybrid cars follow the same rules as normal gasoline cars and must comply with Euro 4 standard, while diesel-electric hybrid cars must comply with Euro 6 standard.
Most hybrids will be exempt from the royalty. But some older models, such as the original Toyota Prius, will be charged.
What are the other exceptions to ULEZ?
Some local residents and vehicle owners in a âdisabledâ tax category may request reductions and temporary grace periods.
Blue badge holders still have to pay the fee if their vehicle does not meet ULEZ emissions standards.
Licensed taxis in London up to the age of 15 are exempt. Wheelchair accessible minicabs have a grace period until October 26, 2025, provided they are used to make a private rental reservation.
Certain agricultural vehicles, tanks, and specialized excavators may also be exempt, as may some showman vehicles.
If you are driving a minibus for a charity or a school – except private schools – you can register for a limited grace period until October 29, 2023.
We pay for your stories!
Do you have a story for the Sun Online Money team?
Email us at [email protected]