So a public consultation is to be held with a view to the government changing the rules on new cars to enable motorists to drive them for four years before they require their first MOT. The aim is to save motorists money.
As always there are two sides to the argument with those in favour of the change rightly stating that new cars are much better built these days and more reliable. This is of course true, but does that necessarily mean that they are safer?
I mean, an MOT can only check the safety features of that vehicle at that given time and an awful lot can happen in four years.
As an independent garage owner we see many vehicles for their first, second or even tenth MOT and the most common reasons for failure are always bulbs, tyres and brakes. In short, items that are both essential to your safety but can also wear out well within four years! In actual fact one in every 5 cars fails its first MOT so these changes could potentially leave a lot of un-roadworthy Cars on the road!
Don’t get me wrong, the UK motorist pays more than their fair share and with the current state of the roads most of us have incurred some unfair costs that we haven’t budgeted for already. And whilst costs shouldn’t ever be put before safety unfortunately they often are.
We see so many customers that simply wouldn’t give the condition of their tyres, brakes or other safety systems a moment’s notice were it not for the MOT. And how many times have you driven down the road and noticed a car coming towards you with a headlamp out? These items are essential for safety and can be potentially lifesaving.
So whilst I support any sort of reduction to the cost of running a car, we have to ask ourselves if saving money is more important than saving lives?