Venson applauds garages for keeping motorists safe during the pandemic with ‘business as usual’ for MOT and servicing for the majority

And reminds the 1 in 4 who took advantage of the six-month exemption to book an MOT or face a £1000 fine

As the motor industry braces itself for a speculated ‘Super September’ as a result of last year’s six-month exemption on MOT testing, a new survey by Venson Automotive Solutions reveals that the majority of motorists (57%) were in fact, able to have their vehicles MOT’d and maintained by their local garage without disruption or delay.

Whilst the survey of 200 motorists also revealed 27% of vehicle owners chose to delay getting their MOT and/or service done last year, just 7% of respondents said their garage was closed due to the pandemic and they had to take their vehicle to a dealership/garage they hadn’t used before.  Only 6% of those surveyed said they’d experienced delays in getting their vehicle serviced, repaired or MOT’d because of shortages in spare parts and less than 7% reported delays because of increased demand from other motorists.

Gil Kelly, Operations Director at Venson Automotive Solutions commented: “It’s to the credit of independent and franchised garages and dealerships across the UK that so many people were able to have their vehicle MOT’d or serviced as scheduled, despite the restrictions lockdown caused over the past 18 months.  However, nearly 1 in 5 (18%) of those we surveyed said they’d be getting their vehicle serviced, repaired or MOT’d in the next 3 months, suggesting there maybe pressure on garages in the coming months, leaving some owners unable to book in with a garage before their MOT is due.”

Adding to this pressure, new cars bought in September 2018 will now need to take an MOT test for the first time this September; according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) record of new vehicle figures registered for that period[i], this could be more than 338,000 vehicles.

Kelly continued: “Although our survey results suggest that the pandemic induced MOT and servicing backlog may not be as big as first feared, if you factor the September 2018 registered vehicles into the equation, there is a real danger vehicle owners may not be able to get their vehicle MOT’d before the due date. Not only will the car potentially be unsafe to drive, but owners will risk a £1000 fine.

“Many vehicle owners leave booking their MOT to the last minute, however, this year it’s vital car owners think in advance and book in with a garage as soon as possible. If vehicle owners are unsure of the date, they can check their MOT date on the government website[ii]. It might also be worth doing a quick look over the car, and checking for common MOT fails, such as lighting and signalling, and checking the tyre pressure and tread.”

According to the RAC[iii], most common MOT fails for 2020 were:

  1. Lighting and signalling (18.9%)
  2. Suspension (13%)
  3. Breaks (10%)
  4. Tyres (7.7%)
  5. Issues affecting the driver’s view of the road (7.2%)