Demand for a London-style congestion charging scheme has grown but it must be accompanied by cuts in taxes or better public transport.
The RAC, which traditionally opposed road pricing, said a survey it had carried out showed increasing numbers of drivers were now willing to pay fees if it meant shorter journeys.
But there would also need to be cuts in motoring taxes, or a clear improvement in public transport, the motoring organisation said.
Councils in the West Midlands are currently working with the Department for Transport to develop proposals for extending road pricing into major urban areas beyond the capital.
Birmingham, Coventry, Dudley, Sandwell, Solihull, Walsall, and Wolverhampton are working together on one scheme. London charges a set fee of £5 for most vehicles to enter the centre of the city in peak hours.
But the schemes developed for the Midlands could be far more sophisticated.
A spokesman for the seven councils said: "The proposals are progressing well and we hope to publish them in the autumn."
Shropshire County Council is also drawing up ideas for road charging in Shrewsbury.
The RAC survey found four out of five motorists believe road congestion is getting steadily worse.
An increasing number would support road pricing to deal with the jams, but only if motoring taxes are reduced or public transport improved.
Ploughing money raised from road pricing back into highway improvements was also supported by drivers.
But more than half of those polled considered charges for using town centre roads were unfair, as were higher charges for rush-hour journeys. And 57 per cent were opposed to charging for using motorways.
Based on responses from 1,000 people, the survey showed: n 79 per cent of motorists perceive that congestion is getting steadily worse. n Support for the concept of road pricing has risen in two years from 19 per cent to 25 per cent. n Of those keen to see road pricing, 67 per cent require a trade-off on motoring tax, 63 per cent expect investment in existing roads, and 43 per cent say improvements in public transport are crucial.
RAC managing director Debbie Hewitt said: "Government must act now to seize this opportunity to win over road users.
"Motorists are telling us that there is wide scope to gain their support but it is critical that policymakers adopt a fair basis for charging, review the impact on current motoring taxes, and promote the technological benefits of a road-pricing system for the idea to become a reality."
The Conservative Party recently broke with its traditional policy of opposing road pricing and hinted it might back the introduction of fees.
Shadow Transport Secretary Chris Grayling has revealed that the Tories are deciding whether to incorporate the idea into their own transport policy. He said road pricing was being considered in the party's policy review.
A survey this month named Birmingham one of the most congested cities in the country.
Frustrated commuters spend an average of 21 minutes standing still in jams to and from Birmingham, while average vehicle speeds during peak periods are only 14.8 miles per hour.
And bus use in the West Midlands has fallen by almost ten per cent in the past five years, the House of Commons Transport Committee warned.