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The cost of driving over a lifetime

Author: Stephen Hurrell

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The cost of driving over a lifetime

British drivers spend nearly £250,000 on running a car over their lifetime, according to a new report by

The price, which does not include the cost of actually buying or leasing a car, is enough to buy a Ferrari 458 Italia or McLaren MP4-12C.

However, the average UK driver will spend a quarter of a million pounds on car ownership without ever getting near a supercar.

Once driving costs such as fuel, insurance, road tax and breakdown cover are taken into account the average male driver will spend around £200,000 on driving costs. Female drivers will pay even more - nearly £220,000 - because females have a higher life expectancy in the UK.

The single biggest cost when it comes to a lifetime of driving is fuel which will cost drivers over £100,000 at current prices.

Car insurance is the second-highest cost for UK drivers with average policies costing drivers more than £30,000. Car insurance costs are closely followed by servicing costs of £20,000 and replacement parts costing £12,000.

UK drivers will be staggered to learn they will pay around £10,000 in road tax and a similar amount for parking costs. Other factors drivers will need to consider when it comes to car ownership include breakdown cover (£3,500) and £5,000 on tyres.

The figures are based on the average UK driver who passes their test at the age of 18 and drives until they die based on life expectancy rates.

However, learner drivers passing their test today are more likely to pay significantly more than the figures quoted because of inflation and rising fuel prices.

Paying high costs to get behind the wheel hits many young drivers early. According to MoneySupermarket it costs up to £2,000 on average to pass the driving test in the first place.

This includes a provisional licence, theory and practical tests and driving lessons. The Driving Standards Agency (DSA) recommends drivers take 47 hours of lessons and the average cost of a driving lesson in the UK is now £24 per hour.

According to MoneySupermarket: "Passing your driving test is a big day in anyone's life. It gives you a new sense of freedom but it also opens up a whole new world of hefty and often unexpected running costs."

Major costs for younger drivers include car insurance costs. Young driver insurance is more expensive than insurance for older drivers because they are statistically more likely to be at risk of being involved in an accident.

However, drivers should not be put off by the high driving costs associated with owning a car. Fuel costs make up half of all costs and a new range of frugal electric and hybrid cars could soften the blow for drivers in future.

Cars such as the extended-range Vauxhall Ampera, all-electric Nissan Leaf and hybrid Toyota Prius offer lower running costs and could soften the £250,000 blow drivers are likely to face over their lifetime.

Hopefully you've had as much fun reading this article as we had writing it, make sure to get in touch with us if you have any questions about new cars for sale or PCP deals. We can be reached through our Facebook page - give us a 'Like' and leave us a comment - or by messaging us at @Oneswoop on Twitter.