Tax and Travel
Car and fuel benefits
The taxable petrol and diesel car benefit is based on the car's CO2 emissions. It is calculated using the car's UK list price and applying the 'appropriate percentage' as shown in the table on the right. The car fuel benefit is calculated by applying the same percentages to the fuel benefit charge multiplier, which for 2015/16 is £22,100.
From April 2015, the five year exemption for zero carbon and the lower rate for ultra-low carbon emission cars came to an end. Two new bands were introduced for ultra-low emission vehicles (ULEVs). These were set at 0-50 g/km and 51-75 g/km.
The appropriate percentages for the remaining bands have increased by 2% for cars emitting more than 75 g/km, to a new maximum of 37%.
From April 2016, all the appropriate percentages will be increased by 2% up to the maximum of 37%. In addition, new European standards which come into force in September 2015 require diesel cars to have the same air quality emissions as petrol cars. The 3% diesel supplement will therefore be removed in April 2016, so that diesel cars will then be subject to the same level of tax as petrol cars.
The appropriate percentage will increase by 2% for cars emitting more than 75 g/km to a maximum of 37% in each of years 2017/18 and 2018/19.
VAT on fuel for private use in cars
Where businesses wish to reclaim the input VAT on fuel which has some degree of private use, they must account for output VAT for which they may use the flat rate valuation charge. The table below shows the VAT chargeable for quarters commencing on or after 1 May 2015.
|Flat rate valuation £||
VAT on charge
|0 - 50||5||8||
|51 - 75||9||12|
|76 - 94||13||16|
|95 - 99||14||17|
|100 - 104||15||18|
|105 - 109||16||19|
|110 - 114||17||20|
|115 - 119||18||21|
|120 - 124||19||22|
|125 - 129||20||23||£200||£33.33|
|130 - 134||21||24||£213||£35.50|
|135 - 139||22||25||£227||£37.83|
|140 - 144||23||26||£240||£40.00|
|145 - 149||24||27||£254||£42.33|
|150 - 154||25||28||£267||£44.50|
|155 - 159||26||29||£281||£46.83|
|160 - 164||27||30||£294||£49.00|
|165 - 169||28||31||£308||£51.33|
|170 - 174||29||32||£320||£53.33|
|175 - 179||30||33||£334||£55.67|
|180 - 184||31||34||£347||£57.83|
|185 - 189||32||35||£361||£60.17|
|190 - 194||33||36||£374||£62.33|
|195 - 199||34||
|200 - 204||35||£401||£66.83|
|205 - 209||36||£415||£69.17|
|210 - 214||
|215 - 219||£441||£73.50|
|220 - 224||£455||£75.83|
|225 or more||£468||£78.00|
The taxable benefit for the unrestricted private use of vans is £3,150. There is a further £594 taxable benefit if the employer provides fuel for private travel.
|Van and fuel charge||Van||Fuel||Total|
|Tax (20% taxpayer)||£630||£118.80||£748.80|
|Tax (40% taxpayer)||£1,260||£237.60||£1,497.60|
|Tax (45% taxpayer)||£1,417.50||£267.30||£1,684.80|
|Employer’s Class 1A NICs||£434.70||£81.97||£516.67|
Zero emission vans
As previously announced, the van benefit for zero emission vans is to be increased on a tapered basis so that there will be a single van benefit charge applying to all vans by April 2020. For 2015/16 the charge will be 20% of the value of the standard van benefit charge (i.e. £630). There is no fuel benefit for such vans.
Changes to the HMRC business mileage rates are announced from time to time. The rates from 1 June 2015 are as follows:
|Vehicle||First 10,000 miles||Thereafter|
|Car / Van||45p||25p|
|Car - fuel only advisory rates|
|1400cc or less||12p||10p||8p|
|1401cc - 1600cc||14p||10p||9p|
|1601cc to 2000cc||14p||12p||9p|
The fuel only advisory rates relate to company cars only. They can be applied as a tax-free maximum rate for employees claiming for petrol used on business journeys and for employees reimbursing their employers with the cost of petrol used for private journeys. HMRC will consider claims for a higher maximum rate, if it can be demonstrated that it is necessary for an employee to use a car with higher than average fuel costs.
Motorists (private or business) purchasing new qualifying ultra-low emission cars can receive a grant of 25% towards the cost of the vehicle, up to a maximum of £5,000. The scheme also covers new qualifying ultra-low emission vans, where the available grant will be 20% towards the cost of the vehicle, up to a maximum of £8,000. Vehicles with CO2 emissions of 75 g/km or less, including electric, plug-in hybrid and hydrogen-fuelled cars, are all potentially eligible for the subsidy. There are strict criteria to be met before specific vehicles can be confirmed as eligible under the rules of the scheme.
Car costs – Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) rates
VED ('Car Tax') rates also reflect emissions, with lower scale rates for cars using alternative fuels. The following table shows the rates which apply from 1 April 2015 for cars registered on or after 1 March 2001:
|VED Band||CO2 emissions (g/km)||First year rate||Standard rate|
|Petrol & Diesel||Alternative fuels|
|A||Up to 100||£0||£0||£0|
|* includes cars emitting over 225g/km registered before 23 March 2006|
Reforms to VED
All cars first registered before 1 April 2017 will remain in the current VED system, which will not change. For cars first registered from 1 April 2017 onwards the following reforms will be introduced:
- First Year Rates will vary according to the CO2 emissions of the vehicle
- a flat Standard Rate of £140 will apply in all subsequent years (except zero-emission cars for which the Standard Rate will be £0)
- cars with a list price above £40,000 will attract a supplement of £310 for the first five years in which a Standard Rate is paid.
From 2020/21 revenues from VED will be used to create a new Roads Fund.
The Government will explore the options for requiring motorists with new cars to undergo the first MOT after four years, rather than three, as part of the forthcoming Motoring Services Strategy.