The 2020 MOT extension finally comes to an end following a 6 month extension during the pandemic. 

Although there was a surge in MOT tests last Christmas, there are still many vehicles on UK roads which pose potential risks to motorists.

Our insightful guide breaks down the MOT extension, the current MOT test changes and the new MOT rules for 2021. 

We will also discuss and provide sustainable alternatives for your vehicle or classic car if it fails its MOT.

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The After-Effects Of The MOT Test

The 6 month MOT extension given to cars, motorcycles and vans in 2020 has made for an unsettling 2021 for most MOT centres.

Although useful for garages that were closed during lockdown, the expansion has now caused an increased backlog of vehicles that require MOT tests in 2021.

This trend looks to continue for the foreseeable future as an additional 339,000 new cars that were bought from September 2018 are now due to have an MOT test for the very first time!

MOT Test Changes In 2021

The MOT test has undergone a few changes in 2021.

The most significant MOT changes have come under the new categories for defects. In addition to this, stricter standards have been given for diesel vehicles and classic cars.

New MOT rules came into force as early as May 2020 where the traditional fail or pass rating was replaced with a dangerous, major and minor rating.


Drivers are responsible to book an MOT test every 12 months to ensure that their vehicles are roadworthy. 

Vehicles are checked for various safety parameters on certain car parts which include:

  • Brakes
  • Light
  • Seat Belts
  • Tyres
To expand on this further, an example can be given as:
  • If a vehicle’s power steering has been negatively affected by damage or corrosion to its wiring, pipe or hose, then this defect would become dangerous and the MOT certificate will flag this to the car owner.
  • If the power steering fluid in your car is below a minimum mark, then the car will be given a minor defect. However if the reservoir is empty, then you will receive a major defect and will fail your MOT test.

After the test has been conducted a valid MOT certificate will be missed to state that your vehicle or classic car has passed its MOT.

It’s important to understand how to pas your MOT to avoid a potential fine of £1000 as well as expensive repairs. Thankfully, we have a quick guide that offers top tips on how to pass your MOT test for 2021!

MOT Test Changes For Classic Cars

MOT tests for classic cars follow different rules than normal vehicles.

Previously classic cars produced before 1960 did not require an MOT test, however a change in 2018 alongside the recent requirements for headlights now changes this.

There is a 40-year roll date that is used for classic car MOT tests. This can be broken down as:

  • A classic car manufactured in 1981 will require an MOT test from 2021.
  • A classic car that is over 40 years old will be MOT exempt until it has been declared as a vehicle of interest.
  • To ensure your classic car is exempt from VED tax, you will need to provide your vehicle log book (V5C) as well as an MOT certificate from a previous test. 
  • Due to the recent changes to classic car MOTs, vehicle owners who have converted their headlights into LEDs will now result in a fail.

As recent classic car MOT changes have negatively affected vehicles it’s important to understand where you stand. Find out more on classic cars and what to do if your vehicle has failed its MOT with Scrap Local’s complete guide!

Car Failed Its MOT?

With 8 million vehicles failing their MOT test in 2020 and a further 5.5 million delaying the test in 2021, it’s now more important than ever to ensure that your vehicle is roadworthy and safe for both yourself and other motorists.

If your diesel, petrol or classic car has failed its MOT and you want to escape a potential £1000 fine and expensive garage repairs, then why not scrap your vehicle with us!

Scrap Local’s award-winning network of vehicle recyclers can arrange a hassle-free scrap car collection and removal service near you. 

Receive one of the best scrap car prices and enquire with Scrap Local today for a FREE quote with NO hidden admin fees!

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