The price of diesel at UK filling stations over Christmas 2022 is set to be a new record high for the festive period, according to the RAC.

It said diesel was currently being sold for 175.75p per litre on average, 27p higher than 12 months ago.

According to the RAC, the increase comes despite the wholesale price of the fuel being only 14p per litre more expensive, and with this year’s price also including the UK Government’s 5p fuel duty cut implemented earlier this year.

The RAC said that based on wholesale prices, diesel should be 13p per litre cheaper than it was now.

The price of the fuel has at least come down since the start of the month, by around 8p per litre.

Petrol is also set for a festive record high, at 152.96p per litre, which the RAC said was 15p higher than the wholesale price justified.

RAC spokesman Simon Williams said: “With the cost-of-living crisis making this one of the toughest Christmases on record, it is even more galling to know drivers are being heartlessly overcharged for fuel making this the most expensive ever festive getaway on the roads.

“The big four supermarkets, which dominate UK fuel retailing, have robustly refused to significantly lower their forecourt prices to reflect what’s happened with the substantial reduction in the price of wholesale fuel that they are enjoying.

“We now have a bizarre situation where many smaller independent retailers are charging far less for their fuel than the supermarkets. The trouble is after years of the supermarkets being the cheapest place to fill up many drivers automatically assume this is still the case and may be losing out as a result.

“We urge the supermarkets to properly cut their petrol and diesel prices to give drivers the Christmas present they deserve. Sadly though, having seen a similar situation last year where the biggest retailers failed to pass on much lower wholesale costs, we’re not holding out much hope they will do the right thing this year. We suspect they’re just going to try to tough out all our calls for price cuts in the hope the price of oil will go back up in the new year.

“The only consolation for drivers is that both petrol and diesel have fallen a long way from their summer highs of 191.5p for unleaded and 199.09p for diesel.”