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Postcode lottery: the cheapest and most expensive places to own a car in the UK

London drivers get the least out of their cars based on cost per mile. Photo: Marc Kleen/Unsplash

When it comes to getting value for money from your motor, it’s not always about how much you drive, but where you drive, research shows.

And analysis of 2.7 million car insurance quotes by pay-by-mile provider By Miles has found the capital is the most expensive place to own and drive a car in the UK, closely followed by Manchester.

Drivers in Greater London are forking out about 58p for every mile they drive, while those in Manchester pay 57p – a third (32%) more than the cheapest area, Galashiels in Scotland, at just 44p.

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Dudley (56p), Stockport (56p) and Oldham (55p) round out the list of the five most expensive places, while Inverness (46p), Perth (45p), Dumfries (45p), and Falkirk (45p) round out the cheapest.

The price of insurance, mileage of the car per year and regional fuel prices are the two main factors contributing to these regional differences, according to By Miles.

In fact, residents of five areas with the highest cost per mile were all found to drive under 7,000 miles a year, while bottom three drove in excess of 8,000 miles per year, the company found.

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And London drivers pay about 0.8p more per litre of petrol than drivers in Scotland.

This trend continues for car insurance costs – those paying the lowest per mile cost saw car insurance costs as low as £351, while those at the top stretched to £979 in east London.

James Blackham, co-founder of By Miles said: “Our analysis shows when you take all your motoring costs into account, your postcode can play a big part in how much you pay for every mile you drive. And those who drive the least are suffering most.

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“While drivers in London, Manchester, Dudley and Stockport may feel cheated when they see how much they’re paying compared to other parts of the country, there are things motorists can do to reduce how much they pay.

“Shop around to make sure you’re getting the best deal for your car insurance.”