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One in five vehicles yet to be retested after MOT extension

Mechanic examining underneath vehicle

One in five (19.5%) vehicles, which were granted an extension to their MOT following the lockdown last March, have yet to be retested, data from the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) suggests.

Even the very last cars to receive an extension have now passed their extended expiry date, yet some 1.86 million of these vehicles still have not had a new MOT, says Kwik Fit.

Analysis of the latest data reveals that these 1.86 million vehicles have not had a valid MOT for an average of 3.4 months.

The statistics are particularly troubling when assessing the MOT failure rate of those cars that have been brought in for MOTs during this period.

Kwik Fit has seen a significantly lower failure rate than in normal years (up to 10% difference), which suggests that it is the cars which are more likely to fail their MOT which are not being tested. 

Even taking the average overall failure rate of around one third of cars, this would indicate that at least 600,000 of these cars are not currently roadworthy, it says.

Garages risk losing MOT certificate

The analysis by Kwik Fit comes as Steve Nash, CEO of the Institute of the Motor Industry (IMI) believes a number of garages risk losing their certificate to offer MOTs with one week to the DVSA training and assessment deadline.

Nash said: “The increased volumes they faced as a consequence of the 2020 MOT extension have made it difficult for them to find the time to complete their training and assessment. 

“If they miss the 30th April deadline they will lose an important revenue stream, not just for MOTs but for the other work that being able to offer MOTs enables.”

Nash suggests that those industry professionals who have not yet taken their assessment may find that, with the higher pass rate now required by the DVSA, they will have little time for retakes.

“This means they could lose this important income stream for their business,” he added. “But that’s not our only concern – there is a very real threat to road safety if the MOT test market shrinks.”

Vehicles were granted the six-month exemption from MOT testing in March 2020, to help slow the spread of coronavirus. 

Mandatory MOT tests for cars, motorcycles and vans in England, Scotland and Wales were restarted from August 1, 2020. 

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