The average litre of diesel now costs 147.94p, according to the latest data from the RAC Fuel Watch service.
That just exceeds the 147.93p per litre average recorded on 12 April 2012, and represents a 30p per litre rise in the last 12 months. There are fears that it could rise higher if oil prices continue to climb.
Petrol prices have continued to rise since last week’s new record, reaching 144.35p per litre on Sunday 31 October.
The RAC’s Simon Williams said that the rise in wholesale oil prices was partly to blame for the latest increases but the soaring cost of biodiesel had also contributed to the rise at the pumps. Oil has doubled in price to $80 a barrel in the last 12 months, while biodiesel has risen two and a half times and now accounts for 16p per litre of fuel.
Mr Williams said: “While this isn’t unexpected as petrol has already hit a new record price, it’s still another body blow to drivers and businesses across the country who were already struggling to cope with rising prices.”
There are around 12.5 million diesel cars on the UK’s roads and the RAC estimates that up to five million vans and HGVs also run on diesel. Mr Williams warned that the increased running costs for businesses were likely to be passed on to households in the form of higher bills.
“As well as hitting household budgets this will have a knock-on effect on the price we pay for goods and services as diesel is very much the fuel of business and, as such, will contribute further to inflation.”
Chancellor Rishi Sunak froze fuel duty for a 12th consecutive year in his Budget last week but the RAC has urged the Government to temporarily cut VAT on fuel to help households struggling with rising costs.