21 Jun 2024
The voice of the independent garage sector

MOT consultation 3-1-1 win: Sector continues to react

The automotive sector has continued to express its views on the outcome of  the MOT consolation following publication of the Government’s response earlier today (Thursday 25 January), which saw the continuation of the 3-1-1 frequency pattern confirmed.

IGA Chief Executive Stuart James said: “We are pleased that the government has listened to our concerns and opted to retain the 3-year time period to first MOT. Public safety is paramount, and the decision aligns with our commitment to protecting motorists by ensuring the continued effectiveness of MOT testing in identifying potential safety issues as early as possible.”

As part of its campaign to help maintain the status of the test, the IGA ran a government petition, collecting more than 11,000 signatures from those opposed to changing the frequency of the test.

The consultation also looked at where the test could be improved and modernised, with the inclusion of ADAS and more effective emissions testing discussed.

Stuart added: “The IGA looks forward to contributing to discussions on the future of MOT testing and other reforms. Our commitment to promoting road safety and protecting consumers remains unwavering, and we will actively participate in shaping policies that benefit both motorists and the industry.”

IAAF Chief Executive Mark Field commented: “Plans to extend the first test from three to four years have been met with the full power of the entire automotive industry including motorists, who have been united in their view that extending the test frequency risks driver safety.

 “Every argument put forward to change the date of the first test has been overcome. An extended test won’t save motorists money and will in fact generate higher bills from worsening, unchecked problems. While it is right to consult on modernising the test process, the debate over the test frequency, the third in over a decade, should never be on the table.”

As well as the argument that the regular mandated MOT inspection saved money for motorists by enabling them to have issues found sooner rather than later IAAF’s lobbying also looked to point out that alternative fuelled vehicles, including EVs more likely to fail the first MOT test.

 Mark added: “Data from DVSA and from the IAAF Garage Network suggests a levelling out of the current MOT trend brought about by the coronavirus pandemic. There is a clear need – and opportunity – to support motorists on the safety benefits of carrying out regular MOT tests. MOT testing stations and testers need to be better supported in communicating to motorists why the MOT test is in place. Much is done on the importance of roadworthiness but more needs to be done to promote the relationship between the motorist and the workshop carrying out the test.” 


Hayley Pells, Policy Lead at the IMI said: “We welcome the Government’s commitment to maintaining the first MOT at three years and annual testing thereafter. This aligns with our findings on the importance of regular checks for road safety and vehicle maintenance.

“The decision to further explore modernising tests for electric and automated vehicles is a positive step towards addressing the unique challenges and advancements in vehicle technology. We also appreciate the focus on diesel emissions, which is crucial for environmental concerns. The conclusion of the consultation also underscores the need for ongoing adaptations in MOT testing to keep pace with rapidly evolving vehicle technologies and environmental considerations.”

“The IMI’s response to the original consultation provided clear evidence that extending the date for the first MOT would significantly increase road user risk.  In particular, the IMI identified that the risks surrounding electric vehicles – which are heavier than ICE vehicles and cause heavier wear to their tyres – would be heightened if the first MOT date was extended. Evidence drawn from MOT testing records supplied to the IMI by the Department for Transport showed that comparative to petrol engine vehicles, electric vehicles are much more likely to fail their first MOT test.”

NFDA Chief Executive Sue Robinson said: “We are pleased that the Government has heeded the points outlined in NFDA’s consultation response and has made the decision today to maintain the first MOT test at three years rather than increase it to four, as was proposed.

“This announcement is extremely positive for our members and consumers. In the consultation, NFDA largely expressed our concerns for motorists’ safety and stressed the importance of vehicle safety and maintaining the UK’s leading safety record in roads. 

“NFDA will continue to work closely with the Government as it seeks to establish a programme of longer-term reform for MOTs and looks to explore modernising the test for electric vehicles.”

Halfords Chief Executive Graham Stapleton said: “The decision announced today to not make changes to the frequency of MOTs is a victory for road safety. The proposed changes would have cost lives. As it is, we are seeing more and more vehicles come into our garages at MOT with tyres that are below the legal minimum tread. Far from rowing back on road safety we should be doing all we can to encourage and enable motorists to keep their vehicles in a roadworthy condition. I look forward to engaging with the Government on the next stage of this process, which is to reform the MOT test so that it better reflects advances in automotive technology.”

To view the consultation response, visit: www.gov.uk/government/consultations/changes-to-the-date-of-the-first-mot-test-and-research-into-other-mot-enhancements