‘Drop MoT for all his­torics’

Classic Car Weekly (UK) - - THIS WEEK -

The clas­sic world’s voice in West­min­ster – Sir Greg Knight MP – ar­gued in June that all tax-ex­empt cars should be spared an­nual MoT tests too.

The East York­shire MP, who heads up the All Party Par­lia­men­tary His­toric Ve­hi­cles Group, ar­gued that the dates should be set ei­ther at the 40-year rolling rule cur­rently used as the ba­sis for ex­empt­ing clas­sics from road tax, or at the 30-year sys­tem used in other Euro­pean coun­tries.

Sir Greg said: ‘ There are those that were man­u­fac­tured be­fore 1960 and are ex­empt from both tax and Mot, and those that have to un­dergo a mod­ern MoT but are nev­er­the­less ex­empt from Ve­hi­cle Ex­cise Duty and which were made 40 years ago – a rolling ex­emp­tion.

‘I see no rea­son for this dis­tinc­tion and am urg­ing the gov­ern­ment to merge the two dates. I be­lieve that all ve­hi­cles man­u­fac­tured 40 years ago should be ex­empt from both Ve­hi­cle Ex­cise Duty and MoT as part of the his­toric ve­hi­cle clas­si­fi­ca­tion and that both dates should be a rolling ex­emp­tion.’

Since then the Depart­ment for Trans­port has launched its long-awaited con­sul­ta­tion into what should re­place the MoT, which in­cluded pro­pos­als sim­i­lar to Sir Greg’s sug­ges­tion. But the ques­tion of whether clas­sics should be tested an­nu­ally or not has left clas­sic own­ers di­vided.

Ch­ester-based clas­sic spe­cial­ist John Wood is one of those who ar­gued against the MP’s pro­pos­als, ar­gu­ing that all ve­hi­cles should be sub­ject to a road­wor­thi­ness test. He says: ‘If the MoT is done away with, it should be re­placed with some sort of manda­tory test for safety rea­sons, even if it isn’t the same for­mat as the cur­rent test.

‘It will only take one in­ci­dent of a clas­sic be­ing in­volved in an ac­ci­dent to open the flood­gates.’

Should clas­sics like the Austin Al­le­gro be ex­empted from MoT tests? Sir Greg Knight MP thinks so. Richard Gunn PHOTOGRAPHY

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