The Independent Automotive Aftermarket Federation (IAAF) is calling on the government to make its decision on the MOT test frequency, with the Federation calling the lack of clarity on the matter “completely unacceptable”, and harmful for the entire supply chain.

The Department for Transport (DfT) launched a public consultation on the future of MOTs in Great Britain in February 2023, which looked at both modernising the test and the test frequency, with the Government’s preference for the first passenger car test to be taken at four years old.

Mark Field, IAAF chief executive, said: “We’re speaking to independent garages every day and they are really concerned for vehicle and driver safety, given the vehicle defects they see of all ages within their workshops. It is completely unacceptable that the automotive industry, which remained open to provide essential support throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, is being made to wait more than six months for an answer on its future and that of motorists’ safety.”

IAAF, along with UK AFCAR and multiple trade associations, have opposed such plans to extend the first test frequency, providing a substantial response to any Government plans. 

According to figures from the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA), 300,000 vehicles approximately fail their first MOT test at three years. Moving the first test to four years under Government proposals poses higher safety risks to motorists and other road users. Delaying vehicle inspections may lead to higher repair costs for motorists who may not know that dangerous faults are developing with their vehicles.

Furthermore, as the number of new electric vehicles on UK roads is increasing, these are just as likely to fail the first MOT test, underlining the importance of safeguarding the current test regime. DVSA data shows that the failure rate on tyres at first MOT of three years is higher on Battery Electric Vehicles (BEVs) than on diesel vehicles. Fifty-seven percent of all electric vehicles that fail their first MOT test, fail on tyres, compared with 35 percent of diesel vehicles and 37 percent of petrol vehicles tested.

IAAF is writing to the Government, calling on them to at least give an indication of their proposals following the MOT consultation.