Diesel was once the fuel of choice for every frugal motorist due to its superior fuel economy, lesser environmental impact and cheaper car tax. But in 2018, things have changed; diesel is no longer the noticeably easier option when deciding on which car to buy.

New diesel cars no longer benefit from low car tax, residual values are set to decrease and concerns over air pollution from diesel cars is driving new car legislation. With petrol and hybrid cars also becoming much more efficient, it begs the question: is diesel still the best option?

So, what do you need to know about petrol and diesel and hybrid cars to make an informed decision on your next car? Here we will tell you everything you need to know:

Diesel Cars vs Petrol vs Hybrid

On average, diesel cars cost more than the equivalent petrol car. In the past, it was possible to recoup this money through cheaper road tax and fuel costs for diesel cars, but not anymore.

Car tax system changes mean diesel owners pay more in their first year, and all drivers pay a flat rate from the second year on. So now, the only savings are coming from fuel economy.

Hybrid cars are more fuel efficient over shorter trips, but the price of running one increases as the distance increases. They are efficient to run around town, but motorway journeys will see a spike in costs. With evolving technologies, we could see hybrids buck this trend in the near future though.

Although diesel cars have been hitting headlines recently with their toxic emissions, there are some diesel cars out there that produce less NOx than the average petrol car, so be sure to check before you buy.

You can fail your MOT under new rules, if you have a diesel car with a diesel particulate filter (DPF), and there is visible smoke emitting form your exhaust.

Replacing a DPF can be a costly fix.

Diesel is the preferred choice of fuel for those who need to tow as they produce huge amounts of torque (pulling power).

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