RAC warns petrol and diesel prices will soon hit £2 a litre, or £110 a tank for a family car, and asks the government to do more
DRIVERS must brace themselves for fuel that will soon cost £2 a litre, says the RAC, which warns the cost of filling a family car could soon tip £110.
The average cost of a litre of petrol was 180.7p yesterday (Tuesday), according to data firm Experian Catalist, which is an increase of 2.2p in just 24 hours and the largest daily jump in 17 years, says the motoring organisation.
The cost of filling a 55-litre family car with petrol is now extremely close to £100 for the first time, and a milestone which might be passed today, while the record-high price for diesel takes the costs of a full tank to more than £101.
Some petrol stations are already selling fuel at more than £2 a litre. But if fuel prices continue to accelerate at the current rate, the RAC says it believes the average price of petrol and diesel could surpass £2 a litre in most areas of the country rather than at just the occasional forecourt.
RAC fuel spokesperson Simon Williams says the country is now in "unprecedented times" in terms of the accelerating cost of forecourt fuel.
He explained: "With analysts predicting that oil will average $135 a barrel for the rest of this year drivers need to brace themselves for average fuel prices rocketing to £2 a litre. which would mean a fill-up would rise to an unbelievable £110.70.
"The oil price is rising due to increased demand for fuel across the world as China eases its Covid restrictions and America and Europe go into the peak summer driving season. All this combined with a weaker pound at $1.2 means wholesale fuel costs more for retailers to buy.
"The wholesale price of diesel is fast approaching 160p a litre which, when you add 7p retailer margin and 20% VAT, would take the pump price over the £2 mark."
March's spring statement saw Chancellor Rishi Sunak take 5p of fuel duty off the cost of a litre of fuel, as part of efforts to help households with the increasing cost of living, but critics of the policy say fuel prices have risen at such a rate since that the benefit to motorists was very soon lost.
In an attempt to make sure forecourt bosses were passing the 5p reduction onto customers, last month business secretary Kwasi Kwartang also wrote to companies reminding them of their obligation to share the tax cut with drivers.
But with prices continuing to rise, and showing no signs of slowing, the RAC says the government now needs to do more.
Mr Williams added: "We strongly urge the government to take drastic action to help soften the impact for drivers from these never-before-seen pump prices."