Petrol prices. Every time we drive past a petrol station, we glance up in the hope that maybe, just maybe, they were lower than they were yesterday. If you own a performance car, how much cheaper was it to drive 10 years ago?
In 2015, the Government’s National Travel Survey found that on average, British drivers travelled 7,900 miles each year. This breaks down to 650 miles a month. So, if you own a Porsche 911 Carrera S, it’ll cost you £125.91 a month to do those miles.
The 911 has a combined mpg of 21-34. So we’ll take an average and say 27mpg. It has a 13 gallon petrol tank and 378 miles total range (according to the manual).
To fill a 13 gallon tank to drive the yearly 7,900 miles, you need to refuel from empty to full 21 times a year. With cost per litre of petrol (and that’s just regular!) at 102.3p on average in the UK, it will cost £1510.95 a year, which averages to £125.91 a month.
Cost of petrol over time
Remember when petrol cost less than £1 a litre? It did 10 years ago. As you can see from the graph below, it was only 87.4p a litre. So if you took the same Porsche back to 2007, it would cost £89.47 a month instead. That’s a saving of over £400 a year!
Go back twenty years and it would only cost £59.27 a month to drive a Porsche 911. In 1987, to fill up a 911 tank would cost just £22.11. To do the same today would cost you over £70.
But before we get up in arms about the rise in the cost in fuel and the increase in tax duty, there’s inflation to consider.
Adjusted for inflation, filling up a 911 tank in 2007 would cost £113.92. That’s a saving of just £12.01 a month, so you’d save £143 a year. Not an insignificant amount to be sure, but hardly the £400 a year saving it seems.
Over the past 10 years, petrol prices have fluctuated up and down by a maximum of 20p a litre. This is a big deal for companies and institutions that buy fuel by the millions of gallons, but for the average driver, the real difference is not as big as remembering the good old days would make it seem.