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Press reports on EC proposals on MOT tests are incorrect

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Rating: 3.5/5 (20 votes cast)

Reports in the press that the European Commission has proposed to make modifications to cars illegal, or to ban classic cars unless they are unchanged since manufacture are entirely wrong.

The Commission’s proposals would not, if agreed by the Member States and the European Parliament, make any difference to the current situation regarding MOT testing in the UK except to make most classic cars more than 30 years old exempt from testing if they are not used day-to-day on the roads.

All other cars would remain subject to roadworthiness testing, just as they are now. Whether or not they have been modified is not of itself relevant: what counts is whether they are safe and that is what is assessed by MOT tests in the UK and by the equivalent tests elsewhere.

What the proposals will do is require all Member States to bring their road worthiness tests up to a certain level of rigour, already applied in the UK : for example, motorbikes will need to be tested regularly everywhere, as they are already in the UK. This will make driving safer for UK drivers at home and abroad.

The Commission is writing separately to all the newspapers concerned, none of which checked the facts with us before publication.

Press reports on EC proposals on MOT tests are incorrect, 3.5 out of 5 based on 20 ratings

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9 Responses to “Press reports on EC proposals on MOT tests are incorrect”

  1. Roger Mellie says:

    Thank you very much for the posting.
    Could you please answer the following so that we have proper clarification?

    What is meant by ‘day to day’ use? Does this mean commercial use, or simply a historic vehicle used as daily transport? And how will it be enforced?
    Can you please respond to the other press/internet hype concerning:

    Harmonisation of EU transport rules
    http://www.the-ace.org.uk/armageddon/
    Rules on vehicle modifications to Historic Vehicles
    Trailer registration and testing

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    • uk.admin says:

      several questions here…we’ll look into it and respond

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    • annteak says:

      A lot of us are still awaiting some feedback from uk.admin on this day to day “add on”.  

      The Commission’s proposals would not, if agreed by the Member States and the European Parliament, make any difference to the current situation regarding MOT testing in the UK except to make most classic cars more than 30 years old exempt from testing if they are not used day-to-day on the roads

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  2. propeco says:

    Your post appears to expand upon the EU document:
    COM(2012) 380 final
    2012/0184 (COD)
    This is the final version of  the document upon which the EU parliament bases its decision, so might I enquire as to the origin of the new information that you would have provided the press had they checked the facts with you?
    The above document proposes a  definition of historic vehicles that the ovewhelming majority of 30+year old cars will not conform – section 2 page 14 of the pdf ( http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=COM:2012:0380%2801%29:FIN:EN:PDF ). This means the vast majority of classic cars will NOT be exempt from the proposed testing regime. BUT that regime requires that ( section 11 page 10 of pf) ,quote: “”…… it is crucial to have access to the technical specifications of each single vehicle. Therefore vehicle manufacturers should not only provide the complete set of data as covered by the certificate of conformity (CoC) but also the access to data necessary for verification of the functionality of safety and environmental related component” ( end quote)  Can you please tell us where those techincal specifications are to be found given that manufacurers are long defunct. Please let us know where EU intends to find that technical information from Triumph, MG, Riley, Alvis, Calthorpe, and dozens more.
     

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  3. propeco says:

    In the diagram on page29 of this pdf:
    http://eur-lex.europ…(51):FIN:EN:PDF
    we see that two databases are central to the legislation: ‘vehicle approval’ and ‘vehicle technical’ , both of which are to be supplied by the vehicle manufacurers. For classic cars that is of course impossible. Nor do the vast majority of our cars get excluded from testing as they fail the ‘historic’ criteria. On that diagram we see ‘Single Vehicle Approval‘ feeding into the overarching ‘Vehicle Admin Platform’.
    Questions:
    Is it the intention of the Regulation to obtain  SVA test data on every classic car that is not defined as ‘historic’?
    What would be the cost to UK of extending the SVA scheme- how many cars are SVA-tested annually at present compared with the anticipated classic car demand?
    If SVA testing of classics is not envisaged, how will the EU obtain the data, including data on the modifications that almost every classic car has undergone?
    Are UK MEPs  aware of the detailed implications for classic cars that do not meet the narrow ‘historic’ criteria?

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    • uk.admin says:

      Please be reassured. The final text of this Regulation will be decided by the national Ministers and MEPs. The Commission will as always work with them as they debate the text and propose amendments, to ensure the final Regulation is effective and efficient and fulfils its aims – which include widening possible exemptions from MOTs.
      Despite inaccurate and alarmist media reports which were not checked with us, those aims certainly do not include banning classic cars from the road or making life more difficult for their owners. Of course, individual vehicles of any age might – exactly as now – be deemed unsafe or unroadworthy by national authorities either in the context of MOT tests or otherwise.
      The Regulation as currently drafted gives Member States freedom to exempt any car fitting the four criteria below from the MOT, as Vehicles of Historic Interest. These exemptions are not linked to how often the car is driven, though the fact that such cars are in many cases driven infrequently adds weight to the case for their exemption. Of course, the criteria for exemption might be amended in the final Regulation.
      – It was manufactured at least 30 years ago,
      – It is maintained by use of replacement parts which reproduce the historic
      components of the vehicle;
      – It has not sustained any change in the technical characteristics of its main
      components such as engine, brakes, steering or suspension and
      – It has not been changed in its appearance;
      Cars not fitting the criteria finally set out would not be removed from the road, they would – just as they are now – simply remain subject to MOT testing.
      Detailed technical data from defunct manufacturers would not – could not – be required. The draft does not state that, where these data are absent, cars would be refused testing or fail tests. It merely says in the preamble that manufacturers “should” supply this data. In practice this would most often be when they produce a new model or variation.
      The diagram referred to in the comments is not from the draft Regulation. It is from an impact assessment comparing the effects of various approaches to the issue – it is not part of the legal text and has no legal force.

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    • annteak says:

      Can uk.admin please tell us why we need to undertake an MOT on pre 1960 classic vehicles if they don’t fit the “Criteria”? It is MOT exempt under current UK legislation.
      Cars not fitting the criteria finally set out would not be removed from the road, they would – just as they are now – simply remain subject to MOT testing.

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  4. pureteenlard says:

    So, let me get this straight . . .
    A modified car would be subject to a regular, UK standard MOT as it always has been.  Just like every other 3+ year old car.

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  5. uk.admin says:

    There is no more to say on this for now beyond the statements above. This proposed EU legislation will now be discussed by national ministers and by MEPs, who – as with all EU law – will decide on its final form, including the final criteria to be applied. Under the Commission’s proposal, and as the Commission has made clear from the beginning, the main change to the current situation in the UK is that many classic cars more than 30 years old and not exempt from MOT under either current or scheduled UK legislation could become exempt.

    Any further questions on this issue should please be directed to the experts in our transport team in Brussels at the following mail address: move-infos@ec.europa.eu.

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