Transparency and Value for Money Measures Welcomed

Following a recent evaluation of the MOT test standards and practices in the UK, the government has decided to implement a number of enhancements for 2012 in addition to the existing regulations:

  • Retain the existing rules on MOT test frequency since the evidence shows that vehicle defects are being missed and roadworthiness mis-assessed.
  • Shine a light on the performance of MOT testing stations by releasing hitherto unpublished VOSA survey data on whether the sector is complying with test standards.
  • Work with motoring organisations to find out what problems motorists experience and enable them to share examples of good customer service – in particular to find ways to make it easier for customers to give feedback on their experiences of garages in a way that others can see – potentially in the manner of existing online hotel and restaurant review websites.
  • Encourage the take up of industry codes of practice – and expand them to include MOT testing – so that customers can find garages signed up to schemes delivering the highest standards and take action if they have not received the service they expect.
  • Help motorists to spot ‘clocked’ second hand vehicles, by changing MOT certificates so that they carry the last three years’ mileage information as well as the mileage on the day of the test, and encourage car buyers to check full MOT histories using the online MOT database.
  • Arrange ‘mystery shopper’ tests to help improve performance in addition to those already carried out by VOSA.

There are 35 million MOT tests conducted at 21,000 authorised premises across Great Britain every year. The cost to motorists of the test alone is around £1.5bn.  The recent evaluation of existing MOT test standards took account of evidence offered by a wide range of organisations, including VOSA (Vehicle and Operator Services Agency).  VOSA showed that more than a quarter of the vehicles tested in 2010 – 2011 had one or more defects that were either missed by MOT test centres or incorrectly assessed.

The VOSA data also showed that the roadworthiness of one-in-eight cars was being incorrectly assessed by MOT test centres.  As a result, the Government will work with industry, motoring organisations and consumer groups to focus on the reliability and standards of garages.

Jeremy Chapman, Aftersales Director for Roy Chapman Ltd said, “We welcome the changes and scrutiny by the DFT and VOSA.  Drivers are often enticed by ‘cheap’ offers without perhaps understanding the repercussions or reading the small print.  Garages prepared to sign up to the Industry Codes of Practice, as we are already, will hopefully put an end to these illegal practices”.

Source: Department for Transport 1 February 2012

For further information please contact: Jeremy Chapman, Aftersales Director, on tel: 01442 871234 or send an email to: