Tax Advantages of a Classic Car

A classic car is one where:

  • the age of the car at the end of the year of assessment is 15 years or more and
  • the market value of the car for the year is £15,000

I found a 1968 Jaguar MkII for sale for £15,000 on

The Mark 2 gained a reputation as a capable car among criminals and law enforcement alike; the 3.8 Litre model being particularly fast with its 220 bhp (164 kW) engine driving the car from 0-60 mph (97 km/h) in 8.5 seconds and to a top speed of 125 mph (201 km/h) with enough room for five adults. Popular as getaway cars, they were also employed by the Police to patrol British motorways.

The Mark 2 is also well known as the car driven by fictional TV detective Inspector Morse played by John Thaw

Assuming the list price was £2,000 (I can’t find the actual list price), the taxable benefit in kind would be £2,000 x 35% (maximum)x 40% (higher rate tax) = £280

As long as the Market Value is below £15,000 these rules apply above £15,000 the market value is used for the calculation, you can pay for your private fuel to avoid the tax on that.

7 thoughts on “Tax Advantages of a Classic Car

  1. Good post! I like classic cars too Steve and in fact have an article which is work in progress on this very topic. I will publish it soon on my blog and also feature other cars that are, and are not, good company car purchases.

  2. As a classic car owning FD I have an interest in this post.

    1) if you want to save tax but haven’t run a classic before, stop and research the subject before proceeding. The cost of restoring and running classics these days is very high and there are technical matters such as ethanol in fuel to think about. What sort of mileage are you planning to do in this classic?

    2) if you’re aware of the downsides of running classics, then doesn’t the tax saving get more than overcome by the wider cost of ownership? i.e. poor fuel consumption, restoration costs, higher general maintenance bills.

    I’m not trying to put you off but in my experience true classic car buffs accept that these cars are not a cheap alternative to modern cars. They also accept that the joys of ownership more than makes up for the high cost outlay. ( a bit like having children really !)

  3. I appreciate this information about the tax advantages of a classic car. It is good to know that a classic car is one where the age of the car at the end of the year of assessment is 15 years or more and the market value of the car for the year is 15,000 dollars. I did not know that as long as the market value is less than this amount, then one can pay for their own private fuel to avoid paying taxes on that. Something to consider would be to look into restoring the car to keep it in functioning condition.

  4. With regards to the comment about the costs of running a classic car, what the retiree has failed to appreciate is the crushing depreciation in new cars. The costs of that in a year would pay for many years of classic car repairs, which need not be high if you buy wisely. Likewise, if you buy wisely then in the current market the value of a classic may even go up rather than down.

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