Internal costs - what driving costs car users directly.
We all know it costs money to own and use a car, but studies show we tend to underestimate the cost of car ownership by more than 50%.
Car costs are split into two types: fixed costs (such as the cost of the car itself, the loan, insurance and taxes) and variable costs (such as fuel and servicing). Here's a detailed explanation, but if you don't have time for that, just take the drive-through option below.
(It's actually a
Drive-Thru: it uses US figures, but it's a handy graph. Click here to expand it.)
The RAC estimated the average cost of owning and running a car in 2012 was £6,689 per year, or 55.7p per mile. (There are no more recent national UK estimates that I could find, but I'd guess that the figure would be around £1000 lower now due to the drop in oil prices.)
In Guernsey, where we have no annual motor tax and low mileage, owning and running a car is estimated to cost around £4000 per year - but that's just an average...
Think your car is time-efficient?
This is a really interesting perspective: it examines the effective speed of various forms of transport, factoring in the time invested in all elements of vehicle use, including time working to pay the costs.
[Spoiler: the perceived advantages of cars - the low cost, high speed indpendence they offer us - are, in this study's words, "illusory".]