Fuel prices ‘will hit £2 per litre this summer’ as petrol costs hit new record

ITV News Reporter Hannah Miller takes a look at the impact the rising cost of living crisis is having on families like the McGinleys, one of many who have already made difficult cut backs

Average petrol prices at UK forecourts hit a record high of 175.6p a litre on Monday, as motorists were warned that the “worst is still to come” as average fuel prices will likely hit £2 per litre this summer.

Monday's figure was up 6.6p from 169.0p seven days earlier, according to newly released government data.

Average diesel prices increased by 3.7p per litre over the same period, reaching 185.3p, the largest weekly increase for both fuels since March.

Pump price of unleaded petrol. Credit: PA

On Tuesday, ITV News journalist Charlotte Cross shared an image of a forecourt sign at the Rugby services on the M6, showing regular unleaded costing 202.9p a litre for petrol and 204.9p a litre for diesel. This is 5p higher than it was just two days ago.

"I've certainly not seen any higher than this," she tweeted.

The price rises have been attributed to a surge in the cost of oil, fuel shortages and increased demand following the global relaxation of Covid restrictions.

RAC fuel spokesman Simon Williams said: “With analysts predicting that oil will average 135 US dollars a barrel for the rest of this year, drivers need to brace themselves for average fuel prices rocketing to £2 a litre, which would mean a fill-up would rise to an unbelievable £110. “All this combined with a weaker pound at 1.2 US dollars means wholesale fuel costs more for retailers to buy. “The wholesale price of diesel is fast approaching 160p a litre which, when you add 7p retailer margin and 20% VAT, would take the pump price over the £2 mark."

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Petrol prices rose by almost 6p a litre over the bank holiday week, to a previous high of 177.9p, prompting the RAC to call for urgent government intervention.

This meant filling a typical 55-litre family car with petrol became around £3 more expensive.

The RAC, which has said it would welcome a further reduction in fuel duty or a VAT cut to ease the pressure on motorists, has warned there would be a "national crisis" if the average price for a litre of petrol exceeded 180p.

"With oil now above $120 a barrel and sterling still at $1.20, worse is still to come," Mr Williams said in previous comments.

In March, the government cut fuel duty by 5p a litre, saying this would save a car driver on average £100 a year, a van driver £200 and hauliers £1,500.