Questions and Answers
What is the PRO-MOTE campaign?
The ProMOTe campaign has been established in response to the Government’s plan to consider reducing the frequency of MOT tests. We are a broad-based coalition representing road safety groups, motoring organisations and industry bodies all opposed to what are dangerous, expensive and unwanted plans.
Who is supporting it?
It is supported by a range of organisations including road safety groups, motoring organisations and industry bodies. Supporters include the RAC, AA, Brake, Aviva, Halfords, Kwik Fit, the Retail Motor Industry Federation and British Cycling. All are united in opposition to proposals to reduce the frequency of MOT testing. You can see a full list of our supporters and details of how to join here.
Why are you against a review of the MOT? Surely, it is sensible to look at this and see if changes need to be made?
We support any review to be make the MOT test more effective. But reducing frequency can only mean an increase in the number of unsafe cars on the road and the Government should say that reducing frequency will not form part of the review.
Modern cars are much safer than older models, yet we have a testing regime that is 50 years old. Isn’t it right for the Government to update the test?
ProMOTe is in favour of reviewing the MOT system to ensure that cars and vans using Britain’s roads are as safe and reliable as possible. But reducing frequency is dangerous, expensive and unwanted by drivers themselves.
The consultation itself has estimated that moving to a 4-1-1 system will increase the number of fatalities and serious injuries on Britain's roads.
Since modern cars are more reliable, doesn’t it follow that there’s no need to test them as often?
Newer cars are as likely to suffer from defects like brakes and tyre wear as older cars. Even under the existing system 20% of vehicles fail the first test at Year 3. Moving that to four years, will double the number of failures and will inevitably mean more unroadworthy and dangerous cars on the road.
What safety implications will changing the frequency of the test have?
All research on this issues shows that less frequent testing means more defective cars on the road which, in turn, increases the number of deaths and injuries. The Department for Transport’s own research in 2008 found that moving from 3-1-1 to 4-2-2 risked increasing the number of deaths and serious injuries on Britain’s roads by almost 3,000 each year.
How many deaths and serious injuries are caused by car defects?
The DfT has estimated that under the existing regime, anything between 3% to 10% of all accidents are caused by car defects. Such a figure will inevitably rise with less frequent tests.
The Government's figures/report suggests that safety won't be a significant factor if frequency is reduced, but you say it will be. What’s your evidence for this claim?
The Transport Research Laboratory report published earlier this year, which the Government uses to justify its position, is quite clear in its conclusions that reducing frequency would increase road accidents and casualties.
The MOT test. They predict that a 4-1-1 system could result in a possible increase in road casualties ranging between 1.89 and 3.53 fatalities, and 20.96 and 39.26 serious injuries per year - this would equate to around a 0.1% increase in both fatalities and serious injuries.
The DfT’s own report from 2008 found that moving to a 4-2-2 testing regime risked causing up to 3,000 more deaths and serious injuries on our roads every year – more than 50 more deaths and serious injuries every week.
What do you think the Government can do to reduce the burden for motorists?
Reducing the frequency of MOT testing can only increase the burden on motorists. Fewer safety tests mean more crashes and greater upward pressure on insurance premiums. In addition, repair bills will probably increase too as smaller defects are left unchecked for longer and so causing more damage to the vehicle over the longer term.
The motorist has been clobbered over recent years; shouldn’t we applaud the Government for trying to reduce the burden on motorists?
Reducing MOT testing will more than likely INCREASE the financial burden on motorists so this is not one that the Government should be using for that purpose. This is the view of both the UK’s largest motoring organisations, the AA and the RAC.
How many defective cars does the MOT test pick up every year?
At present, more than four in ten cars fail their MOT test. About 800,000 are found to have defects that make them dangerous to drive on the road after 3 years, so this figure will only rise under a 4-1-1 system.
What will be the effect of reducing the frequency of the MOT test?
The effect will be to increase the number of defective cars on the road causing more accidents and more deaths and serious injuries. It will also increase carbon emissions into the environment and will result in thousands of jobs lost in the MOT trade.
What evidence is there that reducing the MOT frequency will cost the motorist money?
Extending a vehicle's first MOT may reduce MOT fees motorists have to pay, but these are likely to be far outweighed by the additional costs associated with repairs required and higher insurance premiums.
Won't your customers/motorists welcome the fact that the MOT will become a two yearly job?
There is plenty of evidence that the driving public supports the existing MOT test frequency. Last year, the MOT Trade Forum surveyed 4,200 motorists at their garages and found 92% in favour annual tests.