MOT Test: What You Need to Know

MOT Test: What You Need to Know

An MOT test is a required check to assure that your car meets the current environmental and safety standards. The MOT lasts for one year. Neglecting to get an MOT can be costly. Drivers without a valid MOT can be fined up to £1,000. Therefore, it’s vitally important to know when you need to get an MOT and where to have the test done.


A new car needs to have an MOT test done by the third anniversary of its registration. Once a car is three years old, it needs to have an MOT every year by the anniversary of its last MOT. Motorcycles follow the same MOT frequency rules as cars. The MOT needs to be done by the third anniversary of registration and every year after the motorcycle is over three years old.

Some vehicles are required to have their first MOT one year after their registrations. Ambulances, private passenger vehicles with nine or more seats, taxis, and playbuses must have their first MOT one year after registration and every year afterwards.

A MOT is valid for one year. Many drivers prefer to keep the same renewal date every year. Drivers can get a new MOT test done one day less than a month before the renewal date and still keep the same renewal date.


The fee for the MOT test varies depending on the type of vehicle. The maximum MOT test fees for a car with up to eight passenger seats is £54.85. For a motorcycle, the maximum MOT fee is £29.65. The fee for testing a motor caravan may be £54.85, the same as a car.


For the sake of the MOT tests, types of vehicles are arranged in categories called classes. Not all car maintenance and repair shops that conduct MOT testing can do so for all classes. The garage must be qualified to do testing on the different classes of vehicles.

Class 1: motorcycles with engine size up to 200cc (with or without sidecars)

Class 2 Motorcycles with engines over 200cc (with or without sidecars)

Class 3: 3-wheeled vehicles up to 450kg weight

Class 4: Cars with 8 passenger seats or less, Motor caravans, 3-wheeled vehicles over 450kg weight, Quads up to 400kg, Dual-purpose vehicles, Private hire and public service vehicles with up to 12 seats, Ambulances, Taxis

Class 4a: Class 4 vehicles with 9 to 12 passenger seats with a seatbelt installation check

Class 5: Private passenger vehicles and ambulances with 13 or more passenger seats, playbuses

Class 5a: Class 5 vehicles needing a seatbelt installation check

Class 7: Goods vehicles over 3,000kg


Specific parts of the vehicle are inspected to ensure the vehicle meets the safety and environmental standards. The engine, gearbox, and clutch are not tested during an MOT. The parts of the car that are tested include the steering and suspension, fuel system, wipers, windscreen, lights, electrical wiring, battery, tyres, wheels, Tyre Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS), brakes, exterior vehicle structure, seats, seatbelts, doors, mirrors, horn, towbar, and tailgate. The exhaust system and emissions are also tested.

If your MOT expires, you are prohibited from driving the vehicle. The only exceptions for driving without a valid MOT is to drive it somewhere to be repaired or to a pre-scheduled MOT test. Since driving without a MOT can leave you subjected to steep fines, you will want to schedule your MOT in advance to make sure you don’t end up scrambling for a MOT test at the last minute. Our experienced technicians would be happy to take care of the MOT test for you.