CAZ expansion to hit modern classics

CAZ expansion to hit modern classics

As two more cities implement Clean Air Zones in a bid to improve air quality, the effect on older vehicles looks set to vary by region The expansion of Clean Air Zones around UK cities shows no sign of abating, with Bradford introducing a Class C+ scheme from September 26, while Bristol goes a step further by announcing that its own wide-reaching Class D CAZ – which affects older privately-owned cars – will come into force on November 28.


The Bristol scheme will see drivers of non-compliant cars charged £9 to enter parts of the city. Exemptions apply for petrol vehicles that meet Euro 4 standard (from 2005) and diesels that meet Euro 6 (from 2014), which means there are plenty of modern Jaguars in daily use which will attract the charge.

Bristol City Council states that twothirds of vehicles currently on the road won’t have to pay to enter the city’s CAZ. The move, however, is likely to have major implications for owners and enthusiasts of modern classics. Owners of vehicles that are over 40 years old and classed as ‘Historic’ by the DVLA can apply for exemption when it comes to CAZ charges around the UK, but anyone with a modern classic that isn’t compliant will be faced with a charge for entering various zones.

CAZ rules differ around the UK depending on the class of scheme being introduced by each council. Each scheme falls under one of four categories – A, B, C and D – with the most lenient Class A applying only to buses, coaches and taxis. Class B adds private hire vehicles and heavy goods vehicles to the mix, while Class C goes a step further by including vans and minibuses. Class D is inevitably the toughest of the four classes, as it also includes private cars – a system that’s already up and running in Birmingham and will become active in Bristol from November.

Despite most CAZ areas adopting one of the four standard classes, Oxford chose to go even further early this year when it launched a pilot Zero Emission Zone (ZEV), covering a number of streets in the city centre but set to be expanded to most of it in 2023, subject to a public consultation. Drivers of petrol and diesel vehicles – including hybrids – have to pay a daily charge of up to £10 to enter the pilot zone, which operates from 7am to 7pm each day.

For more information on the CAZ system and the areas it affects, visit gov.uk/ guidance/driving-in-a-clean-air-zone.

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