United States Department of Transportation - Federal Highway Administration FHWA HomeFeedback
Highway Statistics 2003 OHPI > Highway Statistics > 2003 > Hwy Finance > Table FE-101A

FEDERAL TAX RATES ON MOTOR FUELS AND LUBRICATING OIL 1/

SEPTEMBER 2004(CENTS PER GALLON)Table FE-101A
EFFECTIVE DATE OF NEW TAX OR REVISION OF EXISTING TAXGASOLINE (CENTS PER GALLON) 2/GASOHOL (CENTS PER GALLON)DIESEL FUEL (CENTS PER GALLON) 3/SPECIAL FUEL (CENTS PER GALLON) 4/LUBRICATING OIL (CENTS PER GALLON) 5/
June 21, 19321Cbar(6/)downarrowdownarrow4Cbar
June 17, 19331.5Cbardownarrowdownarrowdownarrowdownarrow
January 1, 19341Cbardownarrowdownarrowdownarrowdownarrow
July 1, 19401.5Cbardownarrowdownarrowdownarrow4.5Cbar
November 1, 1942downarrowdownarrowdownarrowdownarrow6Cbar
November 1, 19512Cbardownarrow2Cbar2Cbardownarrow
September 1, 1955downarrowdownarrowdownarrowdownarrowCutting oil, 3Cbar; other, 6Cbar
July 1, 19563Cbardownarrow3Cbar3Cbardownarrow
October 1, 19594Cbardownarrow4Cbar4Cbardownarrow
January 1, 1966downarrowdownarrowdownarrowdownarrow6Cbar 7/
November 10, 19784Cbar 8/downarrow4Cbar 8/4Cbar 8/6Cbar 8/
January 1, 19794Cbar 8/ 9/(6/)downarrow4Cbar 8/ 9/6Cbar 8/ 9/
January 7, 1983downarrowdownarrowdownarrowdownarrowRepealed
April 1, 19839Cbar 8/ 10/4Cbar9Cbar 8/ 10/4Cbar 8/ 9/downarrow
August 1, 1984downarrowdownarrow15Cbar 8/ 10/ 11/downarrowdownarrow
January 1, 1985downarrow3Cbardownarrowdownarrowdownarrow
January 1, 19879.1Cbar 8/ 10/ 12/3.1Cbar 12/15.1Cbar 8/ 10/ 11/ 12/downarrowdownarrow
December 1, 199014.1Cbar 8/ 10/ 12/ 13/8.7 & 8.1Cbar 12/ 13/ 14/20.1Cbar 8/ 10/ 11/ 12/ 13/14Cbar 4/ 8/ 13/downarrow
January 1, 1993downarrow8.7 & 8.1Cbar 12/ 13/ 14/downarrowdownarrowdownarrow
October 1, 1993 16/18.4Cbar 8/ 10/ 12/ 15/13 & 12.4Cbar 12/ 14/ 15/24.4Cbar 8/ 10/ 11/ 12/ 15/18.3Cbar 4/ 8/ 15/downarrow
January 1, 199618.3Cbar 8/ 10/ 15/12.9Cbar 14/ 15/24.3Cbar 8/ 10/ 15/18.3Cbar 4/ 8/ 15/downarrow
October 1, 199718.4Cbar 12/ 17/13.0Cbar 12/ 13/ 18/24.4Cbar 12/13.6Cbar 4/ 21/downarrow
January 1, 2001downarrow13.1 12/ 13/ 19/downarrowdownarrowdownarrow
January 1, 2003downarrow13.2 12/ 13/ 20/downarrowdownarrowdownarrow
Scheduled Changes Underdownarrowdownarrowdownarrowdownarrowdownarrow
Existing LawsdownarrowJan. 1, 2005: 13.3downarrowdownarrowdownarrow
TerminationOct. 1, 2005Oct. 1, 2007Oct. 1, 2005Oct. 1, 2005downarrow

1/ The focus of this table is on the Federal taxes on motor fuels used on highways. The detail provided for other uses is incomplete. Most of the revenue raised by the taxes described is dedicated to the Federal Highway Trust Fund for the financing of highway and transit programs.

2/ Includes the product commonly or commercially known or sold as gasoline and suitable for use as a motor fuel with an octane level of at least 75. The gasoline tax applies to all fuel volume imported or produced. Gasoline used by State and local governments and nonprofit educational institutions is not taxed or tax is refunded if paid.

3/ Until April 1, 1983, the tax applies to all diesel fuel used in a highway vehicle registered for highway use. Diesel fuel used for farming is not taxed, or if the tax has been paid, it is fully refundable. Diesel fuel used by State and local governments and nonprofit educational institutions is not taxed or tax is refunded if paid.

4/ Special fuels include liquefied petroleum gases (propane, butane), benzol, benzene, and naphtha and other liquid (except gasoline, gasohol, and diesel fuel otherwise taxable, kerosene, gas oil or fuel oil) when used in a taxable way. The rates shown are for propane, the most commonly used special fuel. Through March 31, 1983, the tax applies to all special fuels used in a highway vehicle registered for highway use. Effective April 1, 1983, the tax applies to special fuel used in a motor vehicle or motorboat. Special fuels used for farming is not taxed, or if the tax has been paid, it is fully refundable. Special fuel used by State and local governments and nonprofit educational institutions is not taxed or tax is refunded if paid.

5/ The tax originally applied to all lubricating oil regardless of use.

6/ Gasohol was not defined in Federal tax law until January 1, 1979. The products later defined as gasohol were taxable, to the extent they existed, under the provisions of the gasoline tax. Effective January 1, 1979, gasohol was defined to be a blend of gasoline and at least 10 percent (by volume) alcohol, excluding alcohol made from petroleum, natural gas or coal. As so defined, gasohol is exempt from taxation from January 1, 1979 through March 31, 1983.

7/ Cutting oil is exempt from stated taxes. The entire tax on other lubricating oil became refundable for nonhighway use.

8/ Effective December 1, 1978, school buses along with intercity and local buses used to transport the general public for compensation on scheduled routes (or 20 or more passenger buses on nonscheduled routes) are exempt from the stated taxes for motor fuel and lubricating oil. Effective August 1, 1984, the exemption for diesel and special fuel used by these buses is 3 cents per gallon less than the prevailing rate unless used by qualified local buses which are fully exempt.

9/ Effective January 1, 1979 through March 31, 1983, the 2-cent refund or credit for nonhighway gasoline use is permitted only for off-highway business use; special fuel is taxed at the full rate except tax is 2 cents for off-highway business use, and the tax on lubricating oil is refundable only for off-highway use. Effective January 1, 1979 through December 31, 1982 the tax paid on motor fuel used in certain taxicabs is fully refundable.

10/ The diesel fuel tax is imposed on any liquid suitable for use as a fuel in a diesel-powered vehicle or train. Off-highway business use is exempt from stated taxes. Effective January 1, 1983 through September 30, 1988, a 4- cent refund can be claimed for certain taxicab use.

11/ After January 1, 1985 and before August 21, 1996, a one-time diesel differential payment is made to the original purchaser of a diesel automobile of $102, and of a diesel truck or van, 10,000 pounds gross weight or less, $198. The payment decreases by one-sixth for each prior model year vehicle and is not made for 1978 or earlier model year vehicles.

12/ Includes 0.1 cent per gallon tax for the Leaking Underground Storage Tank Trust Fund effective January 1, 1987. Collection of the tax was suspended for the period September 1 through December 1, 1990, and expired January 1, 1996. The fund is reinstated on October 1, 1997, and will expire on March 31, 2005.

13/ Includes 2.5 cents per gallon tax for deficit reduction.

14/ Where two rates are shown, the first is for ethanol blends and second is for methanol blends. Effective January 1, 1993, the definition of gasohol is expanded. The original definition is retained and called 10 percent gasohol and continues to be taxed at the rates shown. Blends with at least 7.7 percent alcohol but less than 10 percent are taxed at 9.942 cents and 9.48 cents. Blends with at least 5.7 percent alcohol but less than 7.7 percent are taxed at 11.022 cents and 10.68 cents. Effective October 1, 1993, the rates for 7.7 percent gasohol are 14.242 cents and 13.78 cents respectively for ethanol blends and methanol blends; the rates for 5.7 percent gasohol are 15.322 cents and 14.98 cents. Effective January 1, 1996, the rates for 7.7 percent gasohol are 14.142 and 13.68 cents respectively for ethanol and methanol blends; the rates for 5.7 percent gasohol are 15.222 and 14.88 cents.

15/ Includes 6.8 cents per gallon for deficit reduction. Effective October 1, 1995, 2.5 cents of the 6.8 cents is dedicated to the Federal Highway Trust Fund.

16/ Until October 1, 1993, compressed natural gas was not taxed. Thereafter it is taxed at 48.54 cents per thousand cubic feet for deficit reduction.

17/ Proceeds of the 4.3 cents-per-gallon tax on highway motor fuel formerly deposited in the General Fund for deficit reduction are now deposited in the Highway Trust fund effective October 1, 1997.

18/ Effective October 1, 1997, the rates for 7.7 percent gasohol are 14.242 cents and 13.78 cents respectively for ethanol blends and methanol blends; the rates for 5.7 percent gasohol are 15.322 cents and 14.98 cents.

19/ Effective October 1, 2001, the rates for 7.7 percent gasohol are 14.319 cents and 13.78 cents respectively for ethanol blends and methanol blends; the rates for 5.7 percent gasohol are 15.379 cents and 14.98 cents.

20/ Effective October 1, 2003, the rates for 7.7 percent gasohol are 14.396 cents and 13.78 cents respectively for ethanol blends and methanol blends; the rates for 5.7 percent gasohol are 15.436 cents and 14.98 cents.

21/ Several alternative fuels are taxed at reduced rates effective October 1, 1997. Liquefied petroleum gases are taxed at 13.6 cents-per-gallon, liquefied natural gas is taxed a 11.9 cents-per-gallon, and M85 (85 percent methanol and 15 percent gasoline) is taxed at 9.25 cents-per-gallon.


This table is also available for download in the following formats:

To view PDF files, you need the Acrobat® Reader®.

OHPI Home | Highway Statistics 2003 | Data Feedback


FHWA Home | Feedback
FHWA