Motorists pay more for car use
Britain's drivers faced an increase in car costs over the past year, with sharp rises in insurance and taxes putting budgets under pressure.
According to figures compiled by Sainsbury's Finance, the overall cost of driving rose by 2.7 per cent to reach £2,338.17 in 2009.
This follows a still steeper increase of 11.3 per cent from 2007 to 2008 - and comes despite the fact that both fuel and servicing expenses have fallen in the past year.
However, insurance prices have risen by 13 per cent and taxes by 8.5 per cent between 2008 and 2009.
In response to the cost increases, Sainsbury's Finance advised drivers to try to reduce their motoring costs through seeking out better-value deals.
Ben Tyte, a manager at the organisation, said: "While certain costs of running a car have fallen during the past year, compared to 2007, the cost of motoring has still increased fairly significantly with road taxes and insurance premiums both on the rise."
He added: "The cost of driving a car can be kept better in check by shopping around, particularly for car insurance and servicing."
The government recently introduced a "cash for clunkers" programme for motorists which has increased overall car sales.
Under the terms of the scheme, motorists can trade in their old vehicle and receive £2,000 towards the costs of buying a new car.