Election 2024: How each political party plans to affect drivers

Blog, News

Updated Friday 5th July 2024

We now know that the Labour Party has won the General Election and has been elected to parliament.

With some manifestos as much as 136 pages long, and with weekly live debates on the television, it’s hard to keep up with each of the political parties’ initiatives and promises. So, that’s why we summarised exactly what the manifestos could have meant for specialist & classic car owners, how they pledge to improve British roads and how it could impact car insurance.

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A picture of a red cross overlaid on an image of a Ultra Low Emissions Zone (ULEZ) sign.
The Conservatives plan to scrap the Ultra Low Emissions Zone (ULEZ) in London – as implemented by Labour’s Mayor of London.

The Conservatives’ plans for drivers

The Conservative Party launched its manifesto on Tuesday 11th June 2024. They set out to spend a lot of money improving transportation and driving on public roads.

They plan to:

  • Invest £36 billion into local roads, rail and buses. This includes investing £8.3 billion to fill potholes and resurfacing roads, funded by cancelling the second phase of HS2.
  • Scrap the Ultra Low Emissions Zone (ULEZ) expansion in London – as implemented by Labour’s Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan.
  • Roll out National Parking Platform this year to simplify how people pay for parking.
  • Prevent any new smart motorways from being built and invest in existing motorways to improve safety.
  • Introduce a Backing Drivers Bill that will:
    • Rule out top-down blanket Low Traffic Neighbourhoods (LTNs): Misuse of LTNs undermines public trust and risks congestion and pollution. The Conservatives propose that this be done on a road-by-road basis and with support of people that live there, with new schemes to be put to a referendum.
    • Scrap the London Ultra Low Emissions Zone (ULEZ) expansion: Reverse Labour’s ULEZ expansion in London, as it only has a ‘moderate’ or ‘minor’ effect on pollution.
    • Stop road pricing: Not introduce pay-per-mile road pricing and ban local councils from doing so.


What does this mean for you?

Fixing potholes and resurfacing roads is great news for everyone, even more so for specialist and classic car owners. Smoother roads mean it’s a more enjoyable drive and more importantly there’s less risk of damaging your vehicle. With the average single repair of a pothole estimated to be £71.40 in England, and with around one million potholes currently in the UK, the Conservatives’ budget to fix potholes seems to be more than enough to us. If you want to find out more about the UK’s pothole crisis, read our recent article on the damage potholes are causing to vehicles.

The Conservatives’ focus on improving public roads over major public transport projects like HS2 suggests they want to make everyday driving better – those who drive their classic car(s) regularly will like this one, we’re sure!

The introduction of the National Parking Platform could make parking less of a hassle, making payments easier when you’re out and about in your specialist car.

If you live or drive in London, the scrapping of the London Ultra Low Emissions Zone (ULEZ) might appeal to you if your specialist vehicle is currently not compliant. This abolishment could significantly impact how and where you drive your vehicle.

READ: Are classic cars exempt or compliant with ULEZ?

Preventing Low Traffic Neighbourhoods (LTNs) can mean fewer restrictions for driving around towns and cities. Heritage’s Managing Director, Mark Wilkinson lives within an LTN and comments: “It’s divisive to say the least! It’s great that our neighbourhood is no longer used as a ‘cut through’ for cars and feels safer for the community. However, it has pushed traffic onto outlying throughways; significantly increasing journey times, traffic volumes and pollution along these routes. This has negatively impacted residents and a three mile journey now could take 20 minutes.

“From my experience, it’s short-sighted to think that putting these hard restrictions in place will make people cycle or catch public transport where there has been no investment in this infrastructure.”

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A picture of cones surrounding a large pothole and a damaged road surface.
Labour plan to improve British roads by fixing an additional one million potholes in each year of the next parliament.

Labour’s plans for drivers

The Labour Party launched its manifesto on Thursday 13th June 2024. They have big plans to help drivers and the environment.

They plan to:

  • Fix an additional one million potholes across England in each year of the next parliament.
  • Support the transition to electric vehicles (EVs) by accelerating the roll out of more charging points.
  • Restore the phase-out date of 2030 for new cars with combustion engines (currently 2035).
  • Maintain and renew the UK’s road network ensuring that drivers remain safe and by tackling congestion.
  • Support drivers by tackling the ‘soaring’ cost of car insurance.


What does this mean for you?

We know that the Labour Party has now been elected. We’ll revisit this article later down the line to review whether they deliver on their promises for drivers.

Likewise with the Conservatives’ initiative, Labour seems committed to improving British roads too. It’s thought that there are more than one million potholes in the UK, so Labour’s plan to fix one million every year is very promising to hear for specialist car owners. If executed as they say they will, we’d assume there will be less people affected by pothole damage and the claims that come with them.

Restoring the 2030 phase-out date for new petrol and diesel vehicles signals a stronger push towards electric vehicles. With this stronger stance, it could mean that petrol and diesel cars will eventually face higher costs or more restrictions. The potential switch from a specialist petrol/diesel vehicle to an electric vehicle is made easier with an increased number of charging points.

READ: What will happen to classic cars when petrol is banned?

Maintaining and renewing the road network helps all drivers. Better roads mean a safer and a more enjoyable driving experience, particularly important for those with specialist vehicles.

Lastly, Labour’s manifesto states they will be “supporting drivers to tackle the soaring cost of car insurance.” This statement comes with no other detail and was loosely mentioned amidst other initiatives. We believe their intention will be to refer the industry to the Financial Conduct Authority and the Competition and Markets Authority to “crack down on any unfair practices” rather than reducing premium prices instantaneously.


An image of two electric cars near an electric charging point.
Liberal Democrats plan to roll out more electric vehicle charging points.

Liberal Democrats’ plans for drivers

The Liberal Democrats launched its manifesto on Monday 10th June 2024. They set their focus on making transport greener and easier to use.

They plan to:

  • Restore the phase-out date of 2030 for all new cars and small vans sold to be zero-emission.
  • Roll out more electric car charging points and cut VAT on public charging to 5%.
  • Give more of the roads budget to local councils to maintain existing roads, pavements and cycleways, including repairing potholes.
  • Investigate ‘unfair’ price of car insurance and petrol prices.
  • Focus their attention on improving public transport by freezing rail fares, maintaining a £2 bus fare cap and simplifying ticketing.


What does this mean for you?

Similar to Labour, the Liberal Democrats want to speed up the transition to zero-emission vehicles. If you’re one for buying new specialist vehicles, this might push you towards considering an electric alternative sooner – especially if there are more EV charging points.

Although their focus on improving public transport might not directly affect driving your car, it could reduce overall traffic. Less congestion on the road means you get from A to B quicker and there is less risk of an incident with another driver.

Liberal Democrats’ manifesto does state that our “roads are in a terrible state, with potholes everywhere” and they vouch to give more of the roads budget to councils to repair them.

Everybody knows that car insurance inflation has influenced premiums over the past year due to increased claims and repair costs. The party mentioned that it would ‘protect motorists from rip-offs, including unfair car insurance and petrol prices’, but gave no additional details.

Their manifesto indicates that they’re focussing on other transportation which may not be as encouraging to hear to drivers, with less of a focus on improving UK roads or giving drivers more autonomy of what vehicles they choose to drive.


An image of cars driving on a polluted, smoky road next to a new electric car.
The Green Party plan to bring forward the date of banning the sales of new petrol and diesel vehicles to 2027, and use of all non-electric vehicles by 2035.

The Green Party’s plans for drivers

The Green Party launched its manifesto on Wednesday 12th June 2024. They have the most drastic changes planned for transport which seemingly would impact specialist and classic car owners most.

They plan to:

  • Shift the transport system away from cars and roads including opposing all new road building plans.
  • Within a decade, replacing all petrol and diesel vehicles with electric vehicles (EVs). There would be an extensive scrappage scheme.
  • Bring forward the date of banning the sales of new petrol and diesel vehicles to 2027, in addition to stopping the use of all vehicles on the road by 2035.
  • Make 20mph the default speed limit on roads in all built-up areas.
  • Make road tax proportional to vehicle weight.
  • Invest largely in improving public transport and creating new cycleways & footpaths.


What does this mean for you?

The Green Party’s bold plan to move away from car use and stop new road building will undoubtedly make it harder to own and drive a specialist car. The lack of new infrastructure can lead to increased congestion on existing roads and deteriorating road conditions with more potholes. This can diminish the enjoyment of driving a specialist vehicle which require well-maintained and less crowded routes for them to truly be appreciated.

Their ambitious goal to replace all petrol and diesel cars with EVs within a decade would drastically change the landscape for specialist and classic car enthusiasts.

Bringing forward the ban on new petrol and diesel vehicle sales to 2027 and stopping their use by 2035 is likely to be seen as reproachful by owners of classic cars. This is a very drastic change that would revolutionise classic car ownership. Enthusiasts would be left to either convert their classic to electric, or make use of a probable scrappage scheme to keep a car on the road.

The proposed default 20mph speed limit in built-up areas would sure be an adjustment for drivers used to higher speeds, which was the case when Wales implemented it in September 2023. It might also mean more congestion and longer travel times within cities.

Making road tax proportional to vehicle weight would not impact drivers with classic cars manufactured pre-1984 – at the time of writing – which are exempt from road tax. But for modern classic or specialist car owners, you may be affected by this.

For example, you could face increased costs for owning a heavier car such as a 1992 Bentley Mulsanne (2,410 kg) or your road tax could be minimised for driving a lighter 1996 Lotus Elise (970kg).


A Low Traffic Neighbourhood and a close up of a petrol and diesel pump.
Reform UK plan to ban all ULEZ and Low Traffic Neighbourhoods (LTNs), and scrap the ban on selling new petrol and diesel cars.

Reform UK’s plans for drivers

Reform UK is due to launch its manifesto today (Monday 17th June), we will update this section once their full manifesto is released. They set out to do the complete opposite to the Green Party, and instead favour specialist car owners with minimal compliance restrictions.

From what we know and expect, they plan to:

  • Legislate to ban all Ultra Low Emissions Zones (ULEZ) and Low Traffic Neighbourhoods (LTNs).
  • Completely scrap the bans on selling new petrol and diesel cars. As well as scrapping legal requirements for manufacturers to sell electric cars.
  • Launch a national database for councils, governments and other authorities to coordinate projects – meaning less roads works and delays.


What does this mean for you?

Reform UK’s plans to ban ULEZ and LTNs mean fewer driving restrictions for car owners. If you own a specialist car that isn’t compliant with the emissions or you live within an LTN, this may appeal to you as you’ll have more freedom to drive where you want without extra costs or restrictions.

READ: How ULEZ is impacting specialist car owners

For the passionate classic car enthusiasts, the continued sale of new petrol and diesel cars means there is less pressure to consider converting to electric with no proposed bans.

The launch of a national database to coordinate roadworks means fewer delays and smoother drives. Less disruption on the roads is always a plus, especially when you’re driving a classic car – the less you’re static on a congested road for prolonged periods, the better!



As the General Election 2024 approaches, it’s clear that each party has different plans that will affect specialist car owners in unique ways. Here’s a quick summary of the key initiatives from each party and what they mean for you.

  • Conservatives: Investing £8.3 billion to fix potholes and scrapping the ULEZ expansion in London will improve road conditions and reduce city driving restrictions for specialist car owners in the area.
  • Labour: Fixing an additional one million potholes each year and accelerating the transition to electric vehicles ensures safer roads and supports a move towards greener driving.
  • Liberal Democrats: Restoring the 2030 phase-out date for new zero-emission cars and increasing electric car charging points make it easier for specialist car owners to switch to electric vehicles.
  • Green Party: Planning to replace all petrol and diesel vehicles with electric vehicles within a decade and opposing new road building plans will significantly push specialist car owners towards electrification and reduced road use.
  • Reform UK: Banning ULEZ and Low Traffic Neighbourhoods, and allowing the continued sale of petrol and diesel cars, offers more freedom and fewer restrictions for specialist car owners.

Each party’s manifesto presents a different vision for the future of specialist car ownership, so stay informed and consider how these changes might affect you and your vehicle(s).

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*Please note that we do not endorse or oppose any political party. The analyses and summaries provided in our content are intended to inform and assist our clients in understanding how various political party policies might impact their insurance needs and decisions. Our goal is to help you make the most informed decisions about your insurance coverage, regardless of political context.