A car’s first MOT after three years should not be pushed back to four years, according to SMMT (Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders) research, with 76% of drivers wanting to keep MOTs at their current timeframe.
The public’s trust in the MOT test procedure was affirmed by the polls which found 83% agreeing that the £45 test fee is worth their peace of mind, and three-quarters opposing the Government’s plan to move the test to four-year-old cars, rather than three. According to the polls, 68% agreed that having a car’s first MOT in its fourth year, rather than third, put road users at risk. In addition, 25.6% thought the proposed changes would not risk road users' safety.
The biggest majority was found in how little the public would trust a used car more than three years old without an MOT; 89% said they would be unlikely to buy one. The SMMT also revealed that 17% of all first MOTs on cars are failed; the cars do not meet minimum safety requirements.
It estimates that around half a million more cars which would otherwise be deemed unroadworthy would be on Britain’s roads, should the plan to postpone a car’s first MOT by 12 months be passed; and after a previous, similar proposition, the Department for Transport estimated that 71 more people would die as a result of these unroadworthy cars each year.
The Government alleges that the MOT test could be safely moved to four years, due to advances in technology such as tyre pressure monitor systems and greater wet weather tyre performance. The SMMT responded, pointing out that these systems do not increase the longevity of parts subject to wear and tear.