More than 200 luxury supercars seized for road tax avoidance last year

Updated: 

Lamborghini, Ferrari and Rolls-Royce owners were among thousands of drivers who had their vehicles seized for avoiding road tax last year, new figures reveal.

Enforcement teams clamped or impounded 118,070 vehicles across the UK between April 2016 and March 2017, including 227 luxury supercars, the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) said.

Some 137 Porsches were confiscated, with the £56,000 SUV Cayenne proving the most popular high-end model among tax-dodgers.

The list also included a Rolls-Royce Phantom - a car which comes which a starting price of £347,000. Teslas, Bentleys, Maseratis and Aston Martins each appeared on the list at least five times.

The most common brands to be taken were Ford, Vauxhall and Volkswagen, with silver coming in as the most frequently-occurring colour. Almost 6,000 Ford Focus models were clamped or impounded.

Black cab drivers also dodged the legal fare, with 68 London taxis being held. Three Reliant Robins, made famous by hit sitcom Only Fools And Horses, were also seized.

Clamped car
Enforcement teams clamped or impounded 118,070 vehicles across the UK between April 2016 and March 2017 (Dave Thompson/PA)

Offenders are caught through number-plate recognition cameras installed on enforcement vans, and DVLA said there was "no excuse" for not taxing a vehicle, given the process was now easier than ever.

Bethan Beasley, DVLA's national wheelclamping manager, said: "Our enforcement teams are out and about on the roads around the UK all year.

"Their vans are equipped with number plate recognition cameras so any vehicle that isn't taxed is at risk of being clamped or impounded.

Ferrari
There were 227 luxury supercars clamped or impounded for not being taxed (Myung Jung Kim/PA)

"The majority of drivers will never come into contact with our clamping teams as more than 98% of vehicles on the road are correctly taxed.

"However, those who risk using an untaxed vehicle on the road will have to manage the cost and inconvenience of their vehicle being clamped or impounded.

"It's never been easier to tax your vehicle, it takes just a few minutes to do it online and now that vehicle tax can be paid by direct debit, payments can be spread over 12 months so there really is no excuse."

Drivers can release a clamped car within 24 hours after paying a £100 fee and the required car tax. Beyond that, the vehicle is taken to the pound where it may be destroyed after seven days, according to the DVLA.

Road tax exemptions are granted to some vehicles including electric cars, and those used to transport disabled passengers.