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Costs 'forcing drivers out of cars'

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Soaring fuel costs have forced 1.3 million people in the UK to give up driving over the past year, according to a new study by Sainsbury's Car Insurance.

The study showed a 22.9% year-on-year rise in the amount spent by the average motorist at the pump to nearly £1,720 a year.

Over three-quarters of car owners said they have changed their motoring habits in the past year, in an effort to save money.

In a bid to reduce costs, more than a quarter of motorists have stopped filling up tanks fully, and they instead purchase specific values of petrol and diesel.

Other changes to motoring habits include driving less (45% of motorists or 16.5 million) and sharing a car (7%).

The survey also found that one out of 10 car owners - 3.53 million - are now using a vehicle that has a lower running cost.

© Press Association 2011