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The shift to electric: what the potential diesel and petrol car ban could mean for you

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April 28th 2021 info news

The majority of us still drive petrol and diesel cars, so it’s easy to forget one alarming event coming up: the petrol and diesel new car ban. When will petrol and diesel cars be banned? It’s sooner than you think.

The law will come into effect in 2030, rendering selling new petrol and diesel cars illegal.

A ban on new hybrids will be incorporated into the law in 2035, making all new cars, at that point, electric or hydrogen-based cars.

The future of gasoline-powered cars might be numbered, but what does this mean for consumers? The used market – by and large – will be unaffected by this ban, so the option to drive with gasoline remains.

Below, we theorise whether the ban will go ahead, how long gas cars will be around and what this ban could mean for drivers like you.

What the petrol and diesel car ban could mean for you

Much of the discourse around the petrol and diesel car ban has concerned environmental and producer concerns. However, what does this ambitious ban mean for consumers?

Originally, the government set a target of 2040 to ban gasoline-powered cars, but, given the legitimate worries around the climate emergency, the date was brought forward 10 years.

Thankfully, for used car consumers, this doesn’t change much. Those who require quality cars on a smaller budget can still buy gasoline-powered cars on the used market. However, if you wish to buy a new car, you’ll be out of luck.

The government plans on rolling out more incentives to switch to electric. As fewer people drive petrol or diesel, it will be interesting to see how petrol and diesel prices change, and which will be cheaper for the average consumer.

Can a gasoline-car ban work?

The petrol car ban is well-intentioned, but can it work? There are a few issues in the way that need to be solved before it can enter the mainstream.

Car charger ports

Charger ports are an obvious question mark regarding the shift to electric driving. At the moment, there are nowhere near enough charging ports to accommodate the shift, plus issues for rural people remain to be solved.

Before the full switch can happen, there needs to be significant funding from the government. Questions around who manages the charger ports and how much power local authorities will have over their maintenance need to be answered, too.

Similar issues were raised when petrol cars were first rolled out, but there are now significantly more cars on the road – how will car charger ports work? How long will they last? How much will it cost to maintain them?


Mileage is a common question mark put against electric cars generally. However, mileage is improving for them and with most Brits driving around 20 miles a day, electric car batteries are more than powerful enough to handle it.

Some drivers, though, commute very long distances, and when we factor in other vehicles like vans, drives and commutes can last for hours and hours.

Moving forward, electric cars will need to work on their mileage to accommodate all drivers, otherwise, the reliability of petrol and diesel vehicles will eclipse them.

Electric car prices

For electric cars to enter the mainstream, they must be more affordable for the average driver. While the used market does offer very affordable options, newer models are more expensive.

In general, there needs to be a reconsideration of how a low-income driver can access good-quality electric cars, which the used market already provides for gasoline-powered ones.

What current cars can I drive post-gasoline ban?

Not all current cars will be banned under these new laws. As mentioned, gasoline cars will stay legal after the ban – you just won’t be able to buy a new one.

However, a few present-day cars already satisfy the remits of the upcoming ban. For example, affordable cars like the Nissan Leaf and luxury electrics like the Tesla Model-3 would be legal to sell new, even in 2030.

If you’re a fan of petrol and diesel cars, you can always turn to the used market. We’ll be here long after the ban, so you can get affordable prices on high-quality vehicles.

Used cars - a futureproof option

So, what will happen to petrol cars? Will diesel be a relic of the past by 2030?

Overall, while the new car ban may sound like a negative for gasoline-powered cars, it isn’t all doom and gloom. In fact, buying a used petrol car is still seen as an environmentally-friendly way to drive, and the used car market will be here to give consumers the best deals possible.

Discover a wide range of used cars from trusted dealers from across the country today.

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