Drivers can get a year of free car tax as Martin Lewis urges electric vehicle owners to act before April

Drivers can get a year of free car tax as Martin Lewis urges electric vehicle owners to act before April

WATCH: MAJOR car tax changes scrapped in huge U-turn amid driver fears

Felix Reeves

By Felix Reeves

Published: 27/03/2024

- 12:49

Electric vehicle owners could avoid having to pay car tax before 2026

Martin Lewis has called on electric vehicle owners to check if they can get free car tax for an extra year ahead of major changes in 2025.

Next year, all owners of electric cars, vans and motorcycles will be required to pay Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) from April 1, in a bid to make the system of tax more equal.

This was first announced in November 2022, when Chancellor Jeremy Hunt said the changes would “ensure that all motorists begin to pay a fairer tax contribution”.

While electric vehicle owners will have to pay tax from 2025, money saving expert Martin Lewis is urging motorists to check if they can get an extra free year.

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Car tax reminder and Martin Lewis

Martin Lewis urged drivers to act before Easter Monday to save on their car tax


New zero emission vehicles registered on or after April 1, 2025, will be will be liable to pay the lowest first year rate of VED which applies to vehicles with CO2 emissions from one to 50g/km.

From the second year of registration onwards, they will move to the standard rate, with any EVs first registered between April 1, 2017, and March 31, 2025, also paying the standard rate.

However, drivers can only get an extra year without tax if their vehicle was first registered on or after April 1, 2017, and your tax is due to start on April 1, 2024 - or May 1, 2024, in some cases.

The earliest the DVLA allow someone to tax their vehicle is the fifth day of the month their current tax expires. This means if the tax expires on March 31, the earliest they can tax it again is March 5.

According to Martin Lewis and the Money Saving Expert newsletter, drivers can delay paying tax on their electric vehicle for an extra year if they meet certain criteria.

It advises drivers to renew their tax for free on their electric vehicle before Monday, April 1, 2024.

They should then do this again before Tuesday, April 1, 2025, at which point it will still be free.

When the new rules are introduced, motorists will need to start paying tax on their EVs from April 1, so if it is done early, they can benefit from an extra year of free tax.

The MSE website states: “Doing this means you'll have pushed the deadline for paying tax on your EV back to when it's next due for renewal in the final week of March 2026.”

Even though electric car owners do not need to pay Vehicle Excise Duty on their EVs until 2025, they do still need to tax them, or they could be fined.

To be exempt, the electricity used to recharge the vehicle must be from an external source, have an electric storage battery or be powered by hydrogen fuel cells.

All vehicle owners are expecting to see their car tax prices rise next week with the new financial year seeing VED rates rise in line with the retail price index.


Electric car charging

From 2025, electric cars will need to pay Vehicle Excise Duty (VED)


While experts have predicted that price increases will not be as much as six per cent, owners of the most polluting petrol and diesel vehicles could see their bills increase by £140 annually.

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