By Richard Robinson

• DVSA found that 12.2% of MOT test results in 2021–22 were incorrect

• Some 2.1% of cars failed by garages should have been issued a pass certificate

• Worryingly, 10.1% were deemed fit for the road, but DVSA found they were not

The latest Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) MOT Compliance Survey for 2021–22 revealed that nearly 1.3 million vehicles are now potentially unsafe and possibly being driven illegally across the UK.

In undertaking the quality audit, the DVSA retested a random number of vehicles to ensure the MOT test was correctly carried out and given the right verdict. DVSA mechanics re-examined 1,732 MOT-tested cars.

Staggeringly, 65.9% of the vehicles retested were found to have at least one defect that the MOT test station incorrectly examined, missed or recorded under something else. Further analysis showed that 51.6% had three or more defects missed or issues that the DVSA’s team of examiners disagreed with from the original assessment.

When it came to dangerous safety defects, the problems were led by tyres (61%) and brake problems (28%). Aftersales teams working with REALTime Communications commonly use the business EVHC technology to identify dangerous issues with cars that come in for a service or repairs. Less than 35% of drivers who are advised that a tyre or tyres on their car are dangerous (Red Work) opt to have the issue rectified at the dealership.

By default, the likelihood is that these drivers are leaving the dealership with a car that is on the road illegally, with the inherent risks to road safety, their licence and insurance. While it is easy to accept that the customer will get the issue sorted elsewhere, could or should the dealer do more as a duty of care to have such work completed? They could offer to price match or provide a temporary loan car if necessary. In essence, work harder to help the customer stay safe and legal. At the very least, they should seek a signed waiver from the customer that they are leaving the dealership in a car that has been identified as unsafe.