Princely petrol pump prices miff motorists

Princely petrol pump prices miff motorists
Motorists in Germany have never shelled out so much to fill up their cars, as fuel costs reached an all-time high in 2011, according to drivers' association ADAC.

The group said on Thursday that increasing oil prices have caused the average prices of both petrol and diesel climb this year. The average cost of a litre of premium petrol in 2011 was €1.52, which is 12 cents more than 2010 and a 49 percent increase since 2001.

It is, however, owners of diesel cars that have been hit the hardest. An increase of 19 cents per litre has been reported by ADAC, bring diesel prices up to €1.41 per litre. This is an increase of 72 percent over the past ten years.

To put the prices in context, driving an Opel Corsa diesel around 15,000 kilometres a year would cost €371 more than it would have ten years ago, according to daily newspaper Die Welt. A petrol guzzling Audi A8 would cost €714 more.

“Lots of people are now reconsidering buying a diesel car,” said ADAC spokesman Andreas Hölzel to The Local. “Even though originally diesel cars paid less tax, the rising costs of natural resources have rendered it increasingly expensive,” he added.

One of the main reasons behind the surging costs is the price of oil. A decade ago, a barrel of oil -159 litres – cost roughly $20. Now, a single barrel costs over $100. The exchange rate between the euro and the US dollar, and the rocketing demand for oil from China and India have also both affected the price of fuel recently.

“It’s particularly difficult for car owners at the moment,” said Hölzel. “Germans are really giving thought to what they’re spending their money on, many choosing not to make long car journeys to keep costs down.”

Jessica Ware ([email protected])

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