London's Ultra Low Emission Zone Aims To Improve Air Quality

London traffic 1 photo
Photo: 3dman_eu on Pixabay
Back in February 2013, Conservative mayor Boris Johnson, the Great London Assembly, and Transport for London laid the groundwork to ULEZ. Another step was made in 2014, and under Labour mayor Sadiq Khan, the Ultra Low Emission Zone will come into effect on April 8th, 2019.
In other words, Londoners will see the replacement of T-Charge with ULEZ, and cities such as Manchester, Oxford, and Birmingham are set to follow. The Ultra Low Emission Zone comprises the area of the Congestion Charge, which will be expanded in October 2021 to include Inner London up to the North Circular and South Circular roads.

How much will motorists be charged to enter the ULEZ? Be it a motorcycle, car, crossover, SUV, or commercial vehicle weighing up to 3.5 tonnes, these people will be charged £12.50 per day. Trucks and buses that weigh more than 3.5 tonnes will be charged £100 per day, and if you were wondering, ULEZ doesn’t replace the Congestion Charge.

More to the point, motorists will be charged £12.50 plus £11.50 to drive in the designated area. On a yearly basis, make that £5,760 if you drive inside the Ultra Low Emission Zone twice a week. Motorists are recommended to pay the charge by the following evening. Otherwise, a £160 penalty will be sent to the vehicle’s owner. On the upside, the penalty drops to £80 if you pay within two weeks.

ULEZ standards exempt from charge Euro 3 motorcycles, Euro 4 gasoline-fueled vehicles, and Euro 6 diesel-engined vehicles. Without further beating around the bush, non-Euro to Euro 6 diesels and non-Euro to Euro 3 petrols will need to pay the charge.

Owners of EVs and Euro 6-compliant hybrids capable of more than 20 miles of zero-emissions driving are treated to the Ultra Low Emission Discount. This ULED thingy includes a 100-percent reduction of the Congestion Charge, which makes it even more tempting to go eco-friendly.

“But what about historic vehicles?” If your ride is 40 years or older, London exempts you from the ULEZ charge but the Congestion Charge still applies.
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About the author: Mircea Panait
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After a 1:43 scale model of a Ferrari 250 GTO sparked Mircea's interest for cars when he was a kid, an early internship at Top Gear sealed his career path. He's most interested in muscle cars and American trucks, but he takes a passing interest in quirky kei cars as well.
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