Why we need to confront real costs
We never REALLY think about the true cost of running a car.
It's about time we, and our politicians, did.
It is a massive financial undertaking now to own and run the most modest of motors.
I say that despite a report this week from the AA saying costs are down a smidgen in the past 12 months.
But have you seen their estimate of what it costs to cover one kilometre?
A frightening 0.6607c That's every kilometre. And we're talking ordinary family car here.
With average 16,000km a year mileage, that comes to €10,571.20, or €200 a week give or take a few euro.
The reason I'm mentioning is to hopefully wake us all up to how much we are contributing to government coffers - from excise duty on fuel to road tax to VAT.
Not to mention VRT when we buy.
I don't expect the politicians to treat motorists well in the Budget. They rarely do. But this year, seeing that the financial whip may not be cracked as viciously as previously, they might bear a few things in mind.
And you might remind them. You really should, you know.
Despite talk of upswings and recovery, there are a lot of people unable to countenance the purchase of a new or newer car for the foreseeable future.
That means they are condemned to making do with one that's costing them more to run than a new one. But they can't afford a new one. I've left the hardest bit until last.
By my reckoning to have €10,571.20 to spend on your car every year you'd have to earn €21,000 (possibly more) before taxes and charges.That's nearly €400 a week. For what is, in many homes, a basic necessity.
Over to you.
Let me know what you think and of your experiences at . . . firstname.lastname@example.org