The government is considering extending the requirement for an MOT test to two years as they consider ways of easing the financial burden many are facing.
Currently, once a vehicle reaches three years old it requires an annual MOT test to check its roadworthiness. This assesses a range of components, while highlighting any faults or defects with the vehicle. These are either classed as ‘advisories’ or ‘major defects’, which have to be addressed by law before a vehicle can be used on the road.
However, according to the BBC, secretary of state for transport Grant Shapps put forward a case to the cabinet that the need for an annual MOT test be scrapped, as ministers worked to come up with ideas to ease the cost of living crisis, but were affordable for the government to implement.
If vehicles no longer required an annual MOT test, drivers could save a maximum of £54.85 per year if they have a standard car, or £29.65 for a motorbike.
However, the proposals have proven controversial, with motoring organisations and garages saying the move would compromise safety on the road.
RAC head of policy Nicholas Lyes said: “The purpose of an MOT is to ensure vehicles meet a basic level of safety for driving on our roads. Shifting it from annually to every two years would see a dramatic increase in the number of unroadworthy vehicles and could make our roads far less safe.
That has been echoed by the automotive industry, with Stuart James, chief executive of the Independent Garage Association (IGA) saying that the plan was “dangerous, unwanted and unreasonable”.
He added: “It is a fact that in times of economic hardship, motorists cut back on servicing their cars and it is the annual MOT that has kept the UK’s road safety at high levels thanks to the vital safety checks it carries out. Saving the cost of an MOT biannually is not worth the price of national road safety.
“This proposal will also fail to save motorists any money long-term as defects will go unnoticed for longer, which at best will cause more damage to vehicles and increase repair costs, and at worst cause unnecessary breakdowns and accidents.”