Fleet News

French to cut diesel/petrol differential

FRENCH officials are proposing to follow in the footsteps of the British Government by moving towards cutting the price advantages diesel enjoys over unleaded petrol. A French driver pays 14p a litre less for diesel than for unleaded petrol.

But in its budget proposals for 1999, the French Government says it intends to cut the difference to less than 10p over the next seven years. It justifies this on environmental grounds, saying the two fuels are too evenly matched for one to enjoy tax benefits over the other. Currently 31% of French vehicle owners use diesel, involving some 7.5 million cars.

Renault and Peugeot-Citroen have both said the changes will not unduly affect their sales of diesels because the benefits of lower fuel consumption still remain for buyers and that a tax advantage would still remain.

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