Top five upcoming changes that could affect the fleet industry in 2018

Whether it’s the upcoming changes to first-year Vehicle Excise Duty (VED), updated Company Car Tax (CCT) rates or clean air zones, there’s lots of upcoming legislation changes for fleet operators to consider in 2018.

2018 fleet regulation changes

To help you out, we’ve pulled everything you need to know together into one place – here’s all the new stuff that’s coming into force this year, and how it could affect the fleet industry.


First-year VED rises for diesels come into effect from April 1.

Read more: Negative headlines about ‘dirty diesel’ pushing fleets to switch

Diesel has received a lot of bad press over the last year or so, culminating in Philip Hammond’s Autumn Budget when he announced a tax hike for new diesels was on the way.

From 1 April 2018, new diesels will face higher first-year VED rates if they fail to meet the latest RDE2 emissions standard. The table below shows how much you can expect first-year VED to rise.

CO2 (g/km)Pre-April 2018 first-year VED ratePost-April 2018 first-year VED rate
(for diesels not meeting RDE2 standards)
1 - 50£10£25
51 - 75£25£105
76 - 90£100£125
91 - 100£120£145
101 - 110£140£165
111 - 130£160£205
131 - 150£200£515
151 - 170£500£830
171 - 190£800£1,240
191 - 225£1,200£1,760
226 - 255£1,700£2,070
Over 225£2,000TBA

It’s worth noting that the standard yearly rate of £140 is unaffected by the changes, and the changes don’t apply to vans.

RDE2 emissions testing

New, more stringent RDE2 emission tests could increase CCT further in the future.

Read more: all you need to know about the new WLTP emissions tests

RDE2 stands for Real Driver Emissions step 2, and is part of the new Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicles Test (WLTP) Procedure. It was introduced in September 2017, and it will become mandatory for all cars to undergo the test from September 2018.

In his Autumn Statement, the chancellor announced that these figures will replace the New European Driving Cycle (NEDC) from 2020 and be used for calculating future VED and CCT rates.

The government is also currently consulting on new regulations to require manufacturers to display WLTP figures to customers, instead of NEDC ones.

Company Car Tax

“One of the most luxurious and extravagant cars on the road.”

Read more: Company Car Tax Rates / Benefit In Kind (BIK) Tax Bands

In addition to the VED tax increase, Company Car Tax (CCT) will be upped from 3% to 4% for diesel cars. This will apply to all diesels registered on or after January 1 1998, which don’t have a registered NOx emission value.

It’ll also affect any car registered after the same date if its registered NOx emission value exceeds RDE2 standards.

Fuel Duty

Fuel Duty for petrol and diesel cars has been frozen at 57.95 pence per litre since March 2011. A rise in line with inflation was expected at the last budget, but the chancellor froze it for another year. This means it will remain at 57.95p until at least April 2019.

Clean Air Zones


Read more: All you need to know about the London T-Charge

As well as a proposed ban on the sale of new diesel and petrol vehicles by 2040, the government’s air quality plan consultation last year included a list of potential local authorities that will are eventually set to become Clean Air Zones.

As well as London’s Ultra Low Emission Zone (expected 2019), Nottingham, Leeds, Derby, Southampton and Birmingham must all introduce clean air zones by 2019. The remaining 23 will have to reveal any plans for toxin taxes and restrictions by the end of the year, too.

Although the government has repeatedly said that ‘toxin taxes’ should only be used as a last resort, the zones will mean that some of the most polluting vehicles could be subject to restrictions from 2019.

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