What does the new Ultra-Low Emission Zone in Central London mean for car enthusiasts?

The new Ultra-Low Emission Zone (“ULEZ”) has seen a few common questions raised by car owners in London. What does this new zone entail?

Where is the ultra low emission zone in London?

ULEZ will cover the same area as the existing Congestion Charging Zone initially, with an expansion due on 25th October 2021 which will see the zone expand as far as the North and South Circular. Unlike the Congestion Charge, which stops pre-7am and post-6pm weekdays and entirely at weekends, ULEZ runs 24/7, 365 days a year.

How much is the ultra low emission zone charge?

The cost of entering the ULEZ in an ineligible vehicle is £12.50 per day, one pound higher than the Congestion Charge and is charged on top of the Congestion Charge - should you venture in with an ineligible vehicle and during Congestion Charge Zone hours you will be charged for both at a cost of £24. The penalty charge for not paying your ULEZ charge is £160, reduced to £80 if paid within 14 days.

Why was the ultra low emission zone charge introduced?

ULEZ has been created to reduce emissions within London and as such a vehicle’s eligibility is based on its emissions. For classic car owners this new zone doesn’t presently offer a

concern, as cars manufactured before 8 April 1979 were instantly exempt when the scheme was introduced and other cars are subject to a 40 year rolling rule provided the vehicle in question is registered as a historic vehicle (therefore if your car was registered on 20th May 1979, from 20th May 2019 your car will be ULEZ exempt provided it is registered and taxed as a historic vehicle).

Which cars will be most affected by the ultra low emission zone charge?

The burgeoning modern classic movement will be arguably the most affected by ULEZ, with ever popular models such as the BMW E30 from the 1980s or the Porsche 993 from the 1990s to be charged under the ULEZ scheme until they reach 40 years old.

For supercars and other modern vehicles, the general ULEZ requirements are that the vehicle meets Euro 4 emissions standards for petrol and Euro 6 for diesel. The ULEZ is enforced based on the declared emissions of the vehicle rather than the vehicle’s age, but broadly speaking petrol cars first registered with the DVLA after 2005 meet the required standards and diesel cars first registered with the DVLA after September 2015 are also of the required standard.

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