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September 23

Do I need to pay road tax on an electric vehicle?

Octopus Electroverse mascot, Zapman, looking confused over EV car tax

When you get a new car there are lots of things to think about before getting it on the road (e.g. insurance, MOT, tax) - but are there any differences for electric vehicles?

Do you need to pay road tax - also known as vehicle excise duty - on zero-emission vehicles?

Let’s get plugged in…


Do I need to pay tax or duty on my electric vehicle?

The simple answer is: no, you don't need to pay road tax on electric vehicles as they are currently exempt!

The slightly more complex answer? While exempt from paying road tax, they are not exempt from registering for road tax.

graphic with text overlay: all UK vehicles must be registered for road tax

We know; it seems wrong to register for road tax/VED (Vehicle Excise Duty) and not pay anything - but without registering, you can be fined up to £1000, so it's well worth it.

Not sure if your vehicle is taxed? Head to Gov.UK and check now! All you need to check your vehicle's status is the registration plate number.

Do hybrid vehicles need to pay road tax/vehicle excise duty?

Road tax for hybrid vehicles is marginally more complicated.

Hybrid vehicles rely partly on electricity and partly on petrol/diesel, but the distribution between the two varies from vehicle to vehicle.

Each vehicle’s tax is therefore dependent on the percentage of C02 emissions they produce - the lower the emissions, the lower the road tax.

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The road tax (VED) amount may also be affected by the date of registration and the fuel type of the vehicle.

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What's happening with electric vehicle tax?

In 2025, the electric vehicle exemption is due to be removed:

Zero emission cars first registered on or after 1 April 2017 will be liable to pay the lowest first year rate of VED which currently applies to vehicles with CO2 emissions 1 to 50g/km. From the second year of registration onwards, zero emission cars will move to the standard annual rate.


Hybrid road tax will also see some changes; their part-electric discount will be removed in 2025 and will join EVs on the standard road tax charging rate.

However, don’t let this discourage you from an electric future!  EVs still have plenty of other benefits:

  • Huge environmental impact - the lifespan of an EV produces 70% less CO2 emissions than a petrol/diesel car!

  • No congestion charge - a big deal if you’re a Londoner or live in a low-emission zone city!

  • The average cost of running an EV is lower than a fuel-powered car - so, some could argue, that you're helping the planet and your wallet!

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To learn more, check out our EV toolkit (guide before you buy) and see how EVs save you money (and the planet too)!


Feeling enlightened or do you think something was missing? Let us know by sharing your feedback.

Interested in learning more? Head over to our Electroverse Community area for more electrifying content.