DfT press release this AM | The Z Club of Great Britain
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DfT press release this AM

Discussion in 'General discussion' started by Mr.F, Dec 18, 2017.

  1. Mr.F

    Z Club Committee
    Committee Member


    Concerns changes in eligibility for MOT exemption for vehicles of historic interest (VHI) - i.e. those more than 40 years old.

    FBHVC reaction to press release:

    [FONT=&quot]Department for Transport (DfT) Guidance on Substantial Change of Historic Vehicles.[/FONT]
    [FONT=&quot] [/FONT]
    1. The Guidance sets out the definition of a Vehicle of Historic Interest (VHI), vehicles which will, from May 2018, be entitled to be exempt from taking a vehicle (MoT) test.

    2. The Guidance reflects the outcome of intensive discussions between the DfT and the Federation of British Historic Vehicle Clubs (FBHVC). FBHVC wishes to express its appreciation of the open and collaborative manner in which the DfT approached these discussions.

    3. In the discussions FBHVC was careful to take account of all possible members of the historic vehicle family.

    4. The Guidance supersedes all previous potential criteria released for discussion by DfT.

    5. The Guidance makes clear that it does not in any way affect DVLA’s registration criteria and processes which remain unchanged.

    6. The Government included motorcycles in the Motor Vehicles (Tests) (Amendment) Regulations 2017. As the Guidance implements the Regulations, DfT could not accept FBHVC’s representations, based upon the requirements of the EU Directive, regarding historic motorcycles, so they are included in the Guidance.

    7. Following STRONG representations by FBHVC, a vehicle may generally be a VHI if relevant changes were undertaken more than 30 years previously. This will be a rolling 30 years and replaces the fixed 1988 date previously proposed by DfT.

    8. Major points of note are:
    a. The process is one of self-declaration.
    b. Owners will only be required to declare their vehicle to be a VHI if they wish to be exempted from an annual MOT Test.
    c. All vehicles will still be able to be tested if their owners wish
    d. The criteria are generic and permit changes made, less than 30 years prior to the declaration, which improve efficiency, safety, preservation or environmental performance.
    e. Those vehicles registered on a Q plate, as kits or built up classics are not entitled to be declared as VHIs until forty years after they were registered.
    f. For motorcycles only the criteria of Q plates, kits and built up classics prevent declaration as a VHI.
    9. The Guidance refers to “a marque or historic vehicle experts”. A list will be published on the website of the Federation of British Historic Vehicle Clubs by 30th April 2018. Vehicle owners wishing to confirm if they may declare their vehicle as a VHI, may choose to contact the appropriate nominee from this list
    10. FBHVC will be explaining the Guidance in full in its first Newsletter of 2018 and as soon as possible on its website at www.fbhvc.co.uk.
    11. Text of the Guidance is at: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/668274/vehicles-of-historical-interest-substantial-change-guidance.pdf
  2. Rob Gaskin

    Rob Gaskin Treasurer in training Staff Member Committee Member

    Well I anticipate this will be a minefield and has brought about unnecessary complication for owners, the DVLA and Clubs (I'm assuming someone in this Club is going to have to make decisions re changes?).

    I'll study it in more detail later.

    How to complicate something that wasn't broken!!!!!!!

    The old MoT was only inapproriate for certain things like emissions.

    If I told my neighbours that my Datsuns don't need an MoT they would be amazed and alarmed! I'm sure they would think that old cars need more testing not none!

    I can see the desirability of old bangers going through the roof! This is going to back-fire just like the abolition of the tax disc.
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 18, 2017
  3. uk66fastback

    Z Club Member

    You have to wonder really about the decision makers sometimes.

    However, no-one is going to run a 40yo car everyday unless they do so already - of that I am pretty sure - especially someone willing to do so, simply to avoid an MoT test.
  4. tel240z

    Z Club Member

    Great news for one of my cars

    a) i have improved efficiency

    b) safety

    c) preservation of the environment (emissions)

    All in contrast with one of my standard Zs

    Job done
  5. richiep

    Z Club Member

    Here's the actual consultation document:


    This is actually much less onerous than it all originally looked. It allows a lot more flexibility than expected in what constitutes Vehicle of Historic Interest and "substantially changed". For example, "alternative cubic capacities of the same basic engine... are not considered a substantial change". So, L28s etc., in 240Zs are fine. It also suggests that swaps of similar format and capacity to original may qualify - so 6cyl swaps like RBs, 1JZ might actually be okay for MOT exemption.

    Changes considered acceptable for VHI/MOT-exemption and 'not substantial' are broad too:
    - "changes of a type, that can be demonstrated to have been made when vehicles of the type were in production or in general use (within ten years of the end of production)." So that covers arch flares (OEM for the 240zg and available as a period option) then, along with competition-related mods of a historically consistent style.
    - "in respect of axles and running gear changes made to improve efficiency, safety or environmental performance ". That covers brake and suspension upgrades etc.

    - "alteration of the type and or method of suspension or steering constitutes a substantial change"; this is interesting. In a Z context this implies that upgrading to adjustable coilovers is NOT a substantial change, because the "type or method" of suspension has not changed. A substantial change would be say swapping leaf springs for struts, etc.Steering - RHD swap or an electric power steering upgrade are not changing the type or method.

    There's other things in the document too; overall, a lot more Zs than I expected will qualify for the MOT exemption given the scope for modifications/upgrades before it becomes considered "substantially changed". It's a lot more common sense than earlier draft statements implied.

    Of course, whether you want to stop having MOTs done is another thing entirely. I'm sure plenty of people will choose to continue to do so for peace of mind and ensuring a regular regime of checking for problems. However, it does give owners MUCH more latitude than expected should they wish to take advantage of the exemption due to what is considered allowable mod-wise before it crosses into needing an MOT.
  6. Rob Gaskin

    Rob Gaskin Treasurer in training Staff Member Committee Member

    This is too open to interpretation Rich.

    So you are driving around quite carefully in an early 1970s 240Z with a 400bhp 6 cylinder motor of say 30+ years younger, fuel injected, turbo etc etc. You have a collision with an old guy who pulls into your path, do you think if your car is inspected that his insurance company will turn a blind eye if you have declared that the car has not been substantially altered ? Don't forget you could be claiming for all those shiny new bits that have cost a fortune (e.g. intercooler)

    Or at the other end of the scale you have fitted a rear disc conversion and you spin the car during an emergency stop. Proportioning valve ? If you have an MoT with rear brakes tested you may be ok, but if not?

    I don't know, but I'd feel a bit 'vulnerable' because these claims can be huge if personal injury is involved. Bankruptcy?
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 20, 2017
  7. Rob Gaskin

    Rob Gaskin Treasurer in training Staff Member Committee Member

    Another scenario:

    You decide to take your car for an MoT test even though you could declare it exempt.

    It fails on a few minor things like wiper function, indicator speed, lighting switch unreliable, rear wheel-bearing play. All things you could live with but which would cost money too get them sorted to pass the MoT.

    What do you do now? Is your car now declared unfit for the road and you can't use it whereas you could have done if you had taken the exemption route?
  8. tel240z

    Z Club Member

  9. toopy

    Z Club Member

    This was in the news letter from my local classic car club recently, how true that is i dont know!

    To MOT or not to MOT

    The new rules regarding MOTs for classic cars have just been released. Essentially you have a choice, or three.
    There is to be a new category, a Vehicle of Historic Interest, or VHI, this is not the same as a Historic Vehicle, though both categories
    apply to cars over 40 years old.
    If you car is over 40 years old it will automatically become a Historic Vehicle and will be
    exempt from road tax, but to declare your car a VHI you must tick a box on the form the next time you license the vehicle,
    in other words it is a voluntary declaration. If you do declare your car a VHI it will be exempt from MOT testing.

    So the choices are:

    1. Do not declare your car a VHI, if you don’t declare your car a VHI you will need to MOT test it before you can use it
    on the road, in other words nothing changes.

    2. Declare your car a VHI but MOT test it anyway; if your car fails you can legally drive it on the road, as the car doesn’t
    actually need an MOT, but the failure will be recorded and you could be stopped and prosecuted for driving an unroadworthy
    vehicle (but not for driving without an MOT as you don’t need one).

    3. Declare your car a VHI and do not submit it for an MOT. If you don’t have the car MOT tested then the onus is on you
    to ensure the car is roadworthy.
  10. Rob Gaskin

    Rob Gaskin Treasurer in training Staff Member Committee Member

    I understand the whole idea of exempting older cars from the MoT better now.

    I'll admit I didn't take into consideration the new EU rulings and therefore the new MoT. Basically the EU have forced the UK into making changes to the MoT which ARE inapproriate to the older cars eg oil leaks. So with the introduction of a more environmental MoT our old cars were under threat so in fact the government have done us a favour.

    What I have now read this week is that if you voluntarily decide to take your car for a new MoT it will be much harder for it to pass than before. Garages are therefore being asked to be lenient on older cars (a Government U turn) so why wasn't that the case to start with? It's all a mess really.

    From tomorrow my cars will not require an MoT but I don't have to declare them exempt until I renew the tax and the DVLA don't want to be involved until then. Apparently police will be made aware of cars not requiring an MoT so that drivers don't get 'booked'.
    Paul_S likes this.
  11. uk66fastback

    Z Club Member

    I read somewhere that it was because of the more strict MoTs coming into force ...

    Anyone know though definitively, if you can register a car without an MoT?
  12. MaximG

    Z Club Member

    I also think increasing some of the MOT data required for really old vehicles just isn't available to the modern test centre.
  13. Geoff-R

    Z Club Member

    Saw your post on pistonheads, seems everyone with this query has a Datsun sitting in the garage! If no one knows for sure I'll ask the MOT guy in work tomorrow.
  14. IbanezDan51

    IbanezDan51 Active Forum User

    I have just taxed my datsun and declared that it is not substantially modified online and is therefor MOT exempt.

    Easy and very painless, and best of all..totally free.
  15. Pete

    Pete Forum User

    Yep, just taxed mine and declared it MOT exempt online. Might be a glitch in the system though cause I tried to do the same for the 100A and it'll let me declare it MOT exempt but wants me to pay £160 tax!
    Just need to see how the insurers will react to insuring a car without an MOT!

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