Gas guzzlers in Richmond will have to pay higher parking charges across the whole of the borough – not just in residents’ bays.

Richmond Council announced the most polluting vehicles will be charged 25 per cent more to use its car parks and other parking bays.

Vehicles ranging from Porsche Cayennes to average family cars such as some Ford Mondeos will pay up to £1.90 an hour to park across Richmond-upon-Thames.

This will apply to cars which emit more than 180 grams of CO2 per kilometre.

The council was the first in the country to vary residents’ parking fees according to a car’s emissions. That change, approved in January last year, saw some permits treble in price.

However, an AA spokesmans said: “It is ludicrous to penalise a vehicle on its emissions, when the engine is switched off.”

Smaller cars which emit 120 to 180 grams of CO2 per kilometre, such as a Ford Focus, will be charged about £1.50 an hour.

The cleanest cars, including the hybrid Toyota Prius and Honda Civic, would pay £1.20.

However, all drivers will be forced to pay the top rate unless they register for the scheme, which could come into play as early as spring.

Motorists will have to register their car’s details online. They will then receive a “Richmond Smart Card”, which they will be able to top up to pay parking fees.

They can also pay by mobile phone, entering their vehicle registration number. The car’s emission class will be checked against the DVLA database and the correct fee will be levied.

The council believes about 60 per cent of households would fall into the two lower categories.

More than 20 councils countrywide have followed the Richmond’s example of linking residents’ bay parking fees with emissions.

The latest change is also expected to be copied across Britain.