Over a quarter of cars fail first MOT test

Updated: 
Checking car oil
A poll by independent road safety charity the Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM) has found that over a quarter of cars (27%) fail their first MOT at three years old.

A Freedom of Information request by IAM, found that the main reasons for MOT fails on three year old cars in the UK are lighting, signalling, tyres and wheels.

Despite this, asked whether they would prefer the European system of MOT testing after four years and then up to every two years thereafter, 60% of British motorists said they think that the current system should be kept. Yet, 40% of motorists believe there is no consistency between garages when conducting MOTs.

More stringent MOT laws are planned for 2012, including new laws on HID lights, warning lights and engine management. IAM believes there are a number of issues with the current system that must first be resolved.

IAM chief executive Simon Best said: "Before any change to the system, the government should commission a review to assure motorists that MOT tests are safe, reliable and consistent. The test should be for the benefit of road safety - not the garages that carry it out."

Compared with the UK, France (which uses the four-two-two MOT rules) has a 6% fail rate for cars that have turned four years old.