Figures from the Royal Automobile Association of South Australia (RAA) indicate that, contrary to popular belief, the overall cost of running a vehicle has fallen over the past year, despite the price of fuel having increased substantially over the same period.

The RAA report doesn’t show a huge decrease – in fact it’s only 0.4% – but it is a decrease nonetheless. Senior Manager of Mobility and Automotive Policy at the RAA, Mark Borlace, puts the decrease down to the fact that most new models are much more fuel efficient than older models, so cost of fuel per kilometre is much less.

In Queensland the State Government is also helping motorists keep the cost of ownership down by freezing the vehicle registration fee for three years from July 2012. The government estimates that the frozen fee will help the owners of 2.5 million family vehicles keep their costs down.

Ten Tips For Lowering Your Fuel Consumption

Since fuel is such a large component of car running costs, the Federal Government has helpfully listed 10 things you can do to maximise fuel efficiency (including point one – just keeping your car in the garage!):

  • Minimise your vehicle use
  • Drive in the right gear
  • Drive smoothly
  • Minimise fuel wasted in idling
  • Don’t Speed
  • Minimise aerodynamic drag
  • Look after your vehicle’s tyres
  • Use air-conditioning sparingly
  • Travel light
  • Keep your vehicle in good condition

For more information on these tips, go to