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Department for Transport

Classic Vehicles: exemptions from periodic testing

This discussion is now closed. Thank you to everyone who took the time to add your thoughtful and very useful comments. We are now considering what you have told us and we will be using it as the basis for a formal consultation on possible changes to the law. We expect to launch the formal consultation on the GOV.UK website in 2015.

The Department for Transport has set up this website for people to discuss and make suggestions about changes to road-worthiness testing for classic vehicles. The current rules in Great Britain will have to change in 2018 and we’re seeking views and evidence on the best way to make those changes.

What’s changed?

In Great Britain all vehicles manufactured before 1960 are exempt from regular road-worthiness testing. A new EU Directive changes the rules around this. The new rules allow member states to exempt vehicles from testing if they:

  • are at least 30 years old
  • haven’t had substantial changes made to them

This means that, if we wish to continue to exempt classic vehicles from regular testing, we’ll need to update UK law to reflect EU law.

Read more about the background to the proposed changes.

How can you get involved?

To help us make this change we’re looking for information and views from people and organisations who are interested in this area. We’re looking for a solution that:

  • supports the government’s aim for better regulation that minimises the burdens on vehicle owners and businesses
  • supports our aims for better road safety

We hope this website will provide a forum for you to let us know how you think we could best achieve this balance and help us to come up with practical solutions.

We’ve broken this issue down into 3 sections where we invite you to comment:

We’ll provide information about the changes we need to make, the current rules and suggest some possible options. We’ll ask questions that we hope you’ll help us to fully consider and answer. We invite you to share your thoughts, opinions or any relevant information you may have.  We’ll sometimes join in the discussion to provide factual information and to keep debates on topic.


We’re intending to keep this website open for 3 months, to the 24th October 2014. The information you provide will be used to inform a formal consultation in advance of a change to the law to be made for no later than 2018.