CAP ‘Total Cost of Motoring’ signals an end to car running cost shocks for Britain’s hard-pressed motorists

A THIRD of motorists admit to regretting a car purchase on the grounds of punishing depreciation and long-term ownership costs, according to newly published independent research.

But the launch of a unique web tool that shines a spotlight on all the critical costs of car ownership, including depreciation – the biggest cost of all – takes the guesswork out of future daily running costs.

CAP Total Cost of Motoring ( is a simple, free-to-use, tool that uses the benchmark used car value forecasts of CAP Automotive - Britain’s leading publisher of vehicle valuation and technical information - to provide a uniquely detailed view of anticipated depreciation, fuel, service, maintenance and other costs.

The shock finding that 1 in 3 motorists admit to regretting a car purchase on the grounds of overall ownership costs comes from independent research conducted for car information experts CAP Automotive, by leading independent consumer research agency HPI Research.

Until now, motorists have had little more on which to base their car purchase decisions than marketing information, car reviews and the opinions of family and friends. And they have never been able to find all of the future ownership cost information they need in one place.

But the launch of CAP Total Cost of Motoring puts all the critical information they need into one easy-to-use free tool, enabling the motorist to compare the forecast ownership costs of almost any new or used vehicle on the road in Britain.

CAP Automotive is uniquely capable of providing reliable Total Cost of Motoring information thanks to a 34-year heritage as the ‘go to’ trusted source of independent insight for automotive professionals.

But this is the first time CAP has opened a window for consumers onto its motor trade and industry insider intelligence since the company was founded in 1979, when it launched the ‘trade-confidential’ Black Book guide to used car values.

CAP Total Cost of Motoring provides anticipated costs of depreciation, fuel, service and maintenance over user-defined ownership periods. The tool also allows for bespoke insurance and finance terms, to offer overall running cost figures for individual vehicles as well as handy comparisons between up to 3 cars at the same time. The figures are broken down to a pence per mile sum so that motorists can see at a glance which cars best suit their long range budget.

Consumer Product Manager, Nick Flood, of CAP Automotive said: “From our research among motorists it’s clear that people in austerity Britain are acutely aware of the risk that choosing the wrong car can lead to nasty financial shocks in the future.

“Research among motorists reveals that 1 in 3 people have regretted a car purchase on the grounds of overall running costs. It is clear that in spite of all the motoring-related information available online and elsewhere, motorists are still largely in the dark about how much a car will really cost them to own over the long term.

“This means that the real key to making a smarter car buying decision is having all the crucial cost-related information in one place, from one trusted, independent source.

“Motorists can often find themselves unexpectedly out of pocket, despite an apparently great deal when they chose their car, because they were originally unclear about factors like the level of depreciation or the long-term service and maintenance costs of their vehicle. This tool removes that uncertainty.

“Free to use and simple to understand, CAP Total Cost of Motoring puts an end to the problem by telling you, up front, what your anticipated ownership costs will add up to.

“We believe the tool will help smooth the car-buying process overall too, because good dealers are happiest serving well-informed customers who know exactly what they want. Dealers want repeat business and there is no better way to earn that than by having happy customers who can be confident from day 1 that they made the right car choice to suit their long-term budget.”