Cost of diesel hits record highIt is now 7.49p a litre more than petrol

21 March 2008

The cost of diesel at the pumps has risen to a record high, it's been announced.

And drivers of diesel-powered vehicles are also suffering from faster rises than those hitting petrol-driven car owners, the AA said.

The average price of diesel in the UK is now 114.25p a litre - a near-5p rise on the average price a month ago.

Petrol price

Average petrol prices are now at 106.75p a litre - 2.74p more than a month ago.

A litre of diesel is now 7.49p more expensive than petrol, compared with 5.1p at the start of the year and the previous record of 5.67p in November 2006.

The AA said a diesel car, which costs on average £1,400 more than its petrol equivalent, usually takes more than 45,000 miles before the savings from greater fuel efficiency recoup the extra cost of purchase.

Two car households

The 2.39p-a-litre increase in the petrol-diesel price gap since the beginning of the year has added on average a further 1,243 miles to the break-even distance - 14% of the average annual car mileage.

For petrol car owners, this month's 106.76p-a-litre average price is 17.73p more expensive than this time last year. This is adding £8.62 to the cost of filling up the typical 50-litre petrol tank.

Families with two cars are now dealing with a £36.93 hole in their monthly budgets from the extra cost of petrol compared with the same period in 2007.

Cheapest petrol

The cheapest petrol at present is to be found in Yorkshire and Humberside (106.7p a litre on average), while the dearest is in London (107.6p).

Wales has the highest-priced diesel (115.1p) while the least expensive is to be found in north west England (113.6p).

The AA said those filling up with diesel this Easter would do well to go to supermarkets where the average price is 111.64p a litre. Supermarket petrol averages 105.18p a litre at present.

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