In a significant relief for drivers, the UK government has opted to keep the existing MOT (Ministry of Transport) testing frequency for new cars. The decision means that new cars will continue to undergo their first MOT three years after purchase, followed by annual tests thereafter. The proposed alternative, extending the intervals to once every two years and conducting the first test at four years, has been discarded.
The potential changes were under consideration as part of efforts to alleviate the financial burden on citizens during the cost-of-living crisis. However, concerns were raised about the impact on road safety by both industry experts and drivers. The decision to retain the current testing schedule was made following a year-long review and extensive debates involving motoring groups, including the AA.
Roads Minister Guy Opperman emphasized that the government’s choice to keep MOTs unchanged demonstrates their commitment to supporting motorists. The decision is expected to provide clarity for drivers and ensure that the UK’s roads remain among the safest globally. The Department for Transport stated that it would collaborate with the industry to develop a longer-term reform plan, considering the evolving landscape with modern cars and Electric Vehicles (EVs).
The government also expressed a commitment to monitoring advancements in new car technologies, such as driver assistance systems, to assess the need for any future changes to the MOT test. AA CEO Jakob Pfaudler supported the decision, citing polling data indicating that a large majority of drivers (83%) supported the annual MOT for maintaining the safety of their vehicles.
This resolution strikes a balance between addressing the economic concerns of citizens and upholding safety standards on the roads. The government’s continued focus on road safety and collaboration with the industry suggests a commitment to adapting testing protocols in response to advancements in automotive technologies.