Petrol prices shot up in May, with the 11p increase being the second largest monthly rise ever on record.
Figures from the RAC Fuel Watch show that the price of a litre of unleaded rose from 162.87p at the start of the month to 174.02p by the end. This was less than a penny short of the overall monthly increase recorded in March.
The difference between May and March, though, is that last month the Chancellor introduced a 5p-per-litre duty cut – yet petrol prices are still hitting record highs.
May also saw the price of diesel hit a record 183p, which saw the price of an average car’s fuel tank top £100 for the first time. The average tank of petrol currently sits at about £96.
Price rises are said to be driven by the increasing price of oil and a weaker pound driving up costs for retailers.
RAC fuel spokesman Simon Williams said “May has proved to be another horrible month for drivers. Since Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24, the price of petrol has gone up 24p a litre. For diesel the figure is 30p.
“This means the cost of filling a 55-litre petrol car has gone up by £13, and a diesel one by £16.50. Both of these figures would have been even higher had the Government not cut fuel duty.
“While it’s hard to imagine prices getting much worse, the wholesale price of petrol has now gone above diesel which spells yet more bad news at the pumps in the coming weeks.”
UK fuel retailing is dominated by supermarkets, which tend to have the lowest prices. Across the big four brands, petrol went up almost 9 per litre to 169.05p, while diesel increased over 6p to 180.38.
The RAC has warned that petrol prices could hit 185p per litre with diesel heading towards 190p.