MOT exemption for cars over 40 years old

What does this mean MOT’ing your classic and for importing and registering cars in the UK?

From 20th May onwards, cars more than 40 years old will no longer an MOT to remain on UK roads. This legislation is applicable on a rolling basis, meaning that is your car is registered on the 14th June, 1978 – after 14th June 2018, your car will no longer need to be MOT’d.

The exceptions…

The clause in the new legislation that has caused a fair amount of confusion is the applicability of the legislation if the vehicle’s main components have been substantially changed in the past 30 years.

The vehicle’s main components are:

  • Chassis and Monocoque
  • Axles and running gear
  • Engine changes

However, these substantial changes can be excused, if:

  • The changes were made to preserve the vehicle or because no original parts are available
  • The changes were during conventional use of the vehicle after production (up to ten years after production)
  • Changes to the main components were made to improve efficiency, safety or environmental performance

Is there anything that is not exempt?

There are still vehicles this doesn’t apply to, and for good reason.

Any large goods vehicles that weight over 3.5 tonnes and buses that are over 40 years old will not be exempt. Obvious concerns about the road worthiness of commercial and vehicles with the ability to transport large volumes of passengers remains a concern to the DVSA for road worthiness.

Cars and motorbikes with a Q registration are also not exempt, as often these vehicles have been assembled from all different makes and models and are defined as ‘reconstructed classic vehicles’.

How do I apply for this and what do I do after?

The owner is responsible to keep the vehicle in a roadworthy condition if you are MOT exempt. It is believed that many owners will still voluntarily MOT test there cars to ensure that this is the case.

To apply for the exemption if your car is registered in the UK, you need to apply for it to be a ‘Vehicle of Historic Interest’ or ‘VHI’. You can do this by filling in a V112 declaration form from the government.

What does this mean for imports?

Importing and registering a car in the UK that is over 40 years old has, on the face of it, has become more accessible. Road worthiness still has to be the owner’s key concern and liability. However registration is more achievable as the supporting paperwork has become smaller.

My Car Import have now registered cars over 40 years old under this new legislation and can assist you with registering an imported car. We are import specialists with a vast contact network to not only got your car compliant but to also register it with the DVLA, ready to have it driving on UK roads.

To find out more about registering a car and if we can help you with our services either fill out the form below, or give us a call on +44 (0) 1332 810 442.


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