The Prius, Congestion Zone and London ~ Hybrid Car Review
Hybrid Car Review: The Prius, Congestion Zone and London

Friday, February 16, 2007

The Prius, Congestion Zone and London

Prius sales have jumped 135% from last year in London, and some people are crediting the rise with the extension of the congestion charge zone into Western London.

London commuters must pay £8 every day they travel into the congestion zone. Implemented four years ago, the congestion zone was just extended to include Notting Hill, Kensington, Chelsea, Hyde Park and shopping areas on Brompton Road, Kensington High Street and Westbourne Grove. But hybrid cars, disabled drivers and taxis are exempt from the charge.

Next year, Mayor Ken Livingstone is planning on increasing the charge to £25 a day for big cars and sport-utility vehicles. In the meantime, residents are eligible for a 90 percent discount on the new fee, although owners of those big cars and SUVs will lose that discount next year.

Mayor Livingstone claims the number of car trips have been cut in central London by 70,000 a day, and the average traffic speed has increased from 8.5 mph to 10 mph. They have also reduced carbon dioxide emissions from cars by 15 percent inside the original congestion zone according to the Transport for London.

Other areas in the UK are also raising parking permit charges based on a vehicles' carbon dioxide output (CO2). In Richmond, for example, a Prius owner will pay six times less than those in the top bracket.

Prius sales have increased to 5,017 units in 2006. Up from 3,745 in 2005.

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1 comment:

anthony m, said...
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