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Holy crap, fuel costs how much?!?!?

When I last went by the supermarket, diesel cost €1,89 a litre, with normal petrol (SP98) touching two euros.


The cost of diesel
Yup, diesel costs €2,18 a litre.

I didn't really need to fill up, as you can see I only managed to squeeze in four litres. However people at work are saying it's supposed to hit €2,50 soon, and they're worried it might top €3 if things carry on as they are.
By things carrying on, I'm not talking about the situation with Russia, I'm talking about the profiteering oil companies that see this as a great opportunity to coin it. A windfall tax won't be any use (they'd just pass the costs on to us). Better, I think, for governments to put hard limits on the cost per litre of fuel, because you and I both know that they will soon - for yet another year - congratulate themselves over record profits...while people at work who live further away are starting to question whether it's even viable to come to work at all if fuel costs that much.

Me? I put in the extra (and they can stuff their "five litre minimum" where the sun doesn't shine) because I'm going to Big Town tomorrow. ☺

Additionally, it's a dinky little car. A two cylinder diesel engine. I had previously calculated that my first car, the white one, cost about €4,48 per 100km, with the costs to fill from about halfway being in the ballpark of €10-12.
My current car has the same engine, so I'd expect much the same sort of performance. The fuel tank is larger, though, so it was around €14-16 to fill from the halfway point. Which, as before, was sort of two-weekly...ish.

Well, nowadays I guess you can pretty much double those prices.

That being said, people who drive tonne-and-a-half tanks around the place, all those SUVs to keep the kiddies safe, tell me that their bi-weekly fill runs to around seventy euros. Twice that? We're looking at a good chunk of salary there.

So the next time somebody asks me how I'm getting on with my Code (as in "Code de la Route", the theory part of a driving test), I'll mention this to them. My car might be tiny and slow, but while fuel prices are rising to match the cost of printer inks, I think I'll stick with an engine that is frugal, thank you very much.


What I'm not sure about, however, is if I look at this picture next Spring, will I be like "holy crap it was expensive back then" or will it be more like "oh my god that's cheap"...?



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Steve Drain, 11th March 2022, 11:14
Do not forget that there is huge tax take on fuel - duty and VAT. It is similar in France and UK. The governments are raking it in as well. 
If you were to drive a moderm small car at the speeds you are compelled to, you might achieve the same consumption. The latest engines are much more fuel efficient than the ancient one you have. 
VinceH, 11th March 2022, 12:24
I paid £1.497/litre at my last visit to the filling station, and my MPG since the previous visit was 40.19. My overall average stands at 38.18. 
The 38.18 is since I got the car, and has more city driving than anything - as does the 40.19. Since then, according to the onboard computer, I've been getting 50+ - but I haven't done much driving; that's mainly three trips down the M5 to Clevedon and back, so more motorway than anything else. 
So on the basis of that price, and splitting the difference between the 40 and the 50 (i.e. 45mpg) the simple rule of thumb I'm using when looking at potential new jobs that are a bit of a distance and deciding whether to apply is: Whatever the weekly mileage will be for the job, two thirds of that expressed in pounds will be my monthly fuel cost. 
i.e. if the job is 30 miles away, and I'd be there every weekday, that'd be 300 miles/week, costing £200/month. 
The calculation that gets there: £1.50/litre x 4.5 = £6.75/gallon. £6.75/45per = 15p/mile. Using the 300miles/week example, that would cost £45/week. Multiplying that by 52 and dividing by 12 for the monthly figure gives £195. Round it up = £200. £200 is 2/3 of 300. 
That slight round up gives me a *little* leeway for the cost rising still further - but not much. It probably won't be long until I have to make it three quarters rather than two thirds. 
Going back to your previous post on the subject, you didn't 'finish' my calculation for me - you took it further than I consider to be meaningful. YMMV, but for me the mpg is the figure that's worth knowing - because to say it costs £x for 100km (or miles) becomes invalidated the moment the price of fuel changes. And it's always doing that. A car that does 45mpg is always going to be cheaper on fuel than one doing 35mpg, regardless of the cost of the fuel. (And obviously, the same holds whichever units you use; miles versus kilometres, gallons versus litres). 
It's only at the moment that I've looked beyond the mpg and considered the price, and come up with that quick rule of thumb, for the purpose of evaluating possible jobs.
Rick, 11th March 2022, 13:11
Yup, I'm quite aware that the cost given was for the prices as they were at that moment, which as you say, has been thoroughly invalidated. 
Having said that, it is worth knowing the distance per litre. 
I'll need to sit down and work this out. 
Suffice to say, I can get 8-9 days out of a half tank. 
I think the tank is 16l, so that's 8l of fuel... But I managed to put 4l into it just now and it was still on six bars (but liable to go down to five at any time)? It doesn't help at all that the gauge is not linear. 
I'll need to, at some point, track the distance and the amounts of fuel put in.
Rick, 11th March 2022, 13:18
The benefit my car has is that it's tiny. 
Sadly it isn't a simple calculation like "two cylinders will use half as much as a four cylinder engine" because one needs to factor in engine capacity, efficiency, and what the usual rpm of the engine is. Kind of like trying to compare RISC and CISC by clock speed alone. ;) 
My engine isn't going to be terribly efficient, not compared to modern ones. Plus because it uses a variable transmission and 45kph is it's nominal top speed, the engine will be running at full power to achieve that (I think that's around 2,800rpm). 
On the other hand, and where my car wins, is that it weighs around 350kg (plus fuel and the fat-arse driver). So it can get away with a dinky mower engine as it doesn't need anything stronger. Modern engines, in modern cars? You'll be heaving around 1,400kg or so (varies wildly depending on the car), which will certainly offset benefits of a more efficient engine. 
VinceH, 11th March 2022, 16:11
You gave enough info for the old car - looks like around 85mpg for those two fill ups you described, unless I mis-keyed something on the calculator. (Shall I double check? Nah!) 
For the new one, tracking the distance is obviously easy - your odometer gives that (or you can use your phone). The fuel can be a bit more hit and miss. I don't know how the pumps work in France, but here when you fill up you squeeze the trigger to pump in fuel, and it'll click/open in your hand when the tank is 'full'. (People who like their tanks to be as full as possible then like to dribble a little more in.) 
So the trick here is to put no more in when it clicks. Note the current mileage. Go on whatever journeys... then fill up again, in the same way. The amount of fuel will then be as close as possible to the amount you've used (still not necessarily exact, but tbh unless the pump is way out, the difference will be negligible - if any doubt, try to make a point of using the same pump). 
If you want to experiment with different speeds/types of journey (and can afford to waste fuel doing that), fill up beforehand, do enough of those journeys to need a worthwhile amount of fuel, then fill up again. You then have a handy indicator for different circumstances. 
FWIW, there's an Android app called Mileage which allows you to record the key figures whenever you fill up - the price per litre, the quantity, and the odometer reading. You can then look at each fill up and it'll show you your mpg (can also be configured for litres and kilometres) and there's a stats screen that tells you your overall, best, and worst figures - the fuel economy, the distances between fill ups, etc. 
I've been using it so long it's become second nature for me to record the info every time.
Rob, 11th March 2022, 22:48
I passed a Shell petrol station this morning. I use Diesel, so notice those prices. 179.9p/l (Google tells me that's €2.148/l). I saw it coming, and filled the tank up a few days ago at the cheapest place I know, but that still cost me 152.9p/l. It wasn't THAT long ago it was 130-something.. (This makes it about £100 for a full tank now - that was very painful, but I figured that even carting the weight about, I'll have saved a packet by the time I need to fill it up again. I usually only put in £20/£30 at a time.) Sorry, it's an MPV, gets me about 28 mpg according to the on-board computer, but we needed something big to get the wife's powerchair in the back, without which she goes nowhere. 
Rick, 11th March 2022, 23:28
Don't apologise. With a wheelchair to contend with, you'll actually need that sort of vehicle. 
I wonder how long it'll be until we start seeing a return to people swiping fuel from car's tanks? Because >£100 for a fill (Google says ~€120), that's going to represent a huge chunk of a wage assuming standard minimum wage (the ones least likely to see any sort of rise). 
Couple that with the knock-on effects (transportation rises making everything more expensive) and inflation already a mess thanks to Covid (and, for you, Brexit)... It's not a good situation. 
Rick, 11th March 2022, 23:36
I may try what you suggested soon, Vince. 
As long as prices are volatile, I'll top up when a bar on the meter goes out rather than at halfway. But once it settles down, I can do a longer distance and measure that. 
There's no need to worry about different types of journey. Aside from once or twice going to a different town, and once chasing a parcel halfway to Rennes... I only ever go to Châteaubriant occasionally, or otherwise to work. 
The work journey is mostly at ~48kph, with two towns (and the access lane!) having 30kph restrictions. But it's familiar territory. ;) 
I'm not mom, I'm not adventurous enough to get in the car and drive somewhere "just because". 
That's why I've not really been putting that much effort into learning to drive properly. As I see it, the only difference a real car will make (besides shaving a few minutes off the commute) is that if I f*** up, I'll f*** up faster... 
J.G.Harston, 15th March 2022, 22:41
With there being close enough 4.5 litres to the gallon, and my last car doing 45 miles to the gallon, I got used to thinking of petrol in quantities of miles. Fill up with 10 litres will get me 100 miles. 
That was until the car very expensively failed its MOT. I scrapped it and started looking for a replacement, but yeah gods, secondhand car prices have rocketed beyond my reach. I quite literally cannot afford to travel to work any more, any jobs I apply for must be within non-car-travel distance.
Rick, 15th March 2022, 23:04
The government has said they'll be reducing the price of fuel by something like €0,15 a litre. So the prices should come down a little bit. 
Well, the other supermarket (Intermarché, I think) is selling diesel for €2,18/litre while my normal supermarket is selling it for €1,98/litre. 
That's a rather startling difference, like 10%ish. 
I wonder if somebody is trying to surreptitiously coin it by having a little delay in between the measures being put into place, and the measures actually taking effect? 
The Intermarché in Châteaubriant has €1,92/litre, with the Leclerc next door at €1,87/litre. So that 2,18 isn't a normal supermarket price, it's a "family-owned petrol station down in the shady end of town" price. 
Rick, 15th March 2022, 23:09
Sorry, I don't really remember the price of cars in the UK. I do recall that one could pick up "a motor" for a few hundred quid, but whether or not said motor was a death trap is a different question! 
Over here, used cars are only marginally less expensive than new ones. Hell, my first little car cost €3000 and it was from 1997 and likely complete bollocks as to its milage. Heh, I bet they fixed her up and sold it...for another three grand. 
Rob, 18th March 2022, 16:32
Local Sainsburys that I normally use is now on 179.9p. That's a 20% rise in two weeks. A Texaco I pass on the school run, which is always expensive, is 185.9p. Not going to be long before we're over £2 a litre in places, I reckon. I've still got half a tank of the 152.9p I filled it with last week, and I'm trying to be very economical in my driving...

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