MOT demand set to exceed capacity

Motorists are being warned that a surge in demand for MOT tests this March could see them struggle to get their MOT renewed or obtain a first MOT.

However, the Institute of Motor Industry (IMI) is warning there could be another challenge on the horizon for drivers – finding a legally compliant MOT tester after the 31 March deadline for testers to complete their annual assessment. 

Significant numbers of MOT testers are working full throttle to ensure unusually high demand for MOT renewals is met this March – a direct consequence of the MOT extension issued in 2020 at the height of the pandemic. But this additional workload could have considerable longer-term ramifications on garage income, as well as road safety, if testers fail to meet the MOT Annual Assessment deadline.  

Despite reminders to testers from the IMI that they need to complete this assessment by the end of the month, DVSA data reveals that over 40% the UK’s MOT testers are currently not compliant. 

Steve Nash, CEO of the IMI, said: “The pressure really is on MOT testers, with many working over and above to ensure they keep their customers legally on the road. However, by failing to prioritise their MOT Annual Assessment they could undo their fantastic efforts. If the Thursday 31 March deadline is not met, they will need to be able to competently demonstrate to a DVSA representative their ability to carry out an MOT assessment on a vehicle.

“This will be conducted face-to-face at the tester’s place of work, but with so many testers potentially failing to be compliant by the deadline, they could be waiting some considerable time before a DVSA representative reaches their workshop.”