Published On: Fri, Sep 14th, 2018

MOT test – New data shows more drivers are failing since the changes were introduced


Earlier this year, a number of and as a result, there has been a significant increase in test failure rates. 

A study of 50 MOT test centres across the UK highlights the impact the new changes have had on motorists, in particular, diesel.

Failure rates for petrol cars over the past three months have increased by 12 per cent, while failures for cars have risen by 24 per cent. 

The research, undertaken by car experts prestigemotorwarehouse.co.uk has stated emissions are the biggest worry now for those driving a diesel.

“The new MOT tests came into effect in England, Scotland, and Wales on Sunday 20 May 2018.

“There are stricter limits for emissions from diesel cars with a diesel particulate filter (DPF). 

“A DPF captures and stores exhaust soot to reduce emissions from diesel cars.

“During an MOT test, your car will get a major fault if the MOT tester can see smoke of any colour coming from the exhaust or finds evidence that the DPF has been tampered with.

“This has seen a big increase to the failure rates over the past 3 months – but it is not surprising to hear and read.”

Changes to the MOT test saw a number of new fault categories introduced and old ones revised to improve safety and clarity for motorists. 

The three main categories are Minor, Major and Dangerous. 

Minor faults refer to an issue that can still see you pass your test but will be noted down on your MOT certificate and need to be addressed at the earliest convenience.

Major and Dangerous faults will result in an instant failure, however, if it has a dangerous fault the vehicle cannot be driven until it has been repaired.

You can drive your vehicle with a major fault if your old MOT is still valid, but a major fault is registered on the database and you will knowingly be driving with this – putting yourself at risk of a fine of £2,500, be banned from driving and get three penalty points.

Testing for diesel cars became much stricter, which has probably contributed to the increase in failures. 

Cars fitted with a diesel particulate filter will instantly fail the test if has been removed or been found to be tampered with. 

A new DPF costs around £1,000 and drivers could face a fine of £1,000 if their car doesn’t have one, as this is enough to see the car fail its MOT. 

In addition to this if the tester can see smoke coming from the exhaust the car will also instantly fail.

Scrapcarcomparison.co.uk has seen a rise across the UK of cars being written off within the past 3 months which coincides with the MOT failure rate.

“There’s more and more of the older cars failing the new mot and that has led to an increase in the calls we are getting for people wanting to scrap their cars.

“More people are now buying eco-friendly cars and on finance and this is leading to less of the older polluting diesels on the roads.”



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MOT test – New data shows more drivers are failing since the changes were introduced