Over seven and a half million motorists may no longer be able to afford to run a car during 2018

Tuesday 30th January 2018: The latest research from comparethemarket.com reveals that nearly one in five (19%) motorists – that’s over seven and a half million - could be more likely than ever to sell their cars due to rocketing costs.

With the price of car insurance at a record high, the ongoing costs of keeping a car is reaching breaking point for millions of UK motorists. According to comparethemarket.com’s latest Premium Drivers Index, the average costs of a car insurance premium has continued to climb steadily and is now at £758 – up £43 year-on-year.

When asked why they may need to say goodbye to their wheels, over half (52%) of motorists put it down to the rising car insurance premiums, however numerous other factors are to blame. Over half (55%) also cited “rising petrol prices” and the same amount admitted to overpaying for mechanical repairs. In fact, the average car-owner has forked out £342 on garage bills over the last 12 months, with more than one in ten paying up to £1,000.

A major factor contributing to this growing selling trend is that many don’t fully understand how to keep costs low. The research found that more than two in five (43%) drivers are fully aware they are not running their car as cost-efficiently as possible. And a further two in five (38%) put this down to their own knowledge gap relating to cars.

This lack of car know-how is also a problem whenever drivers need to make a pit-stop at the car mechanics – with three in five (60%) admitting they never understand what the repairs were for and, almost half (46%) admitting that they probably over-paid because they completely trusted mechanics to just get on with it.

Simon McCulloch

Simon McCulloch

Director of Insurance


“The ever-rising cost of owning a car is in danger of putting the brakes on car ownership in the UK.  With many motorists relying on their car daily, it’s never been more important to stay on top of the factors that will impact premiums and ongoing running costs alike, as doing so could be the difference between taking the car or the bus. 

Although some driving costs are unavoidable, there are measures drivers could take to make getting on the road more affordable.  Do your research when picking a garage and make sure you’re clued up before committing to any repairs. When it comes to premiums, be aware of the many factors that could impact the cost – for example, things such as where you live and the local crime rate may have a big effect on the premium that you pay. If you’re a young driver struggling to stay on the road, you could potentially save hundreds by fitting a black box combined with your policy.

Naturally, it’s important to do your research when insurance renewal time comes around before committing to a new quote.”

To check out comparethemarket.com’s latest Premium Drivers Index see here:

To help motorists manage the costs of their vehicles, comparthemarket.com has launched its Jargon Buster, a tool which puts motorists in the driving seat when it comes to understanding auto lingo: