Next year, cars built before 1978 won’t need an MOT test. I didn’t know cars built before 1960 were already exempt.
(for the non-UK: MOT test is an annual test to check the car is fit to use and there’s likely to be an equivalent in your country).
Okay, most of those cars are in museums or collections and are either off the road or so cared for that they’d be in good shape anyway. Some, however, are still in regular use by the UK version of hillbillies.
Off the road cars are covered by SORN (standard off-road notification) and I have a Fiesta in the garage in that state. I’m smartening it up but don’t need MOT, tax or insurance for it because it doesn’t go on any public roads. Museums and most collections will be in the same place.
There was a time when cars past a certain age didn’t need to pay road tax. It made sense because those cars’ owner(s) had paid enough tax already. Tiny Blur took it from a floating age-of-car to a fixed point in time because he was, is, and always will be, a money grabbing Socialist shit like all the rest of them. But I digress.
The roadworthiness test is a different matter. I just paid out ‘ouch’ money for new rear brake pads and disks and it’s not even MOT time yet. I like to have the ability to stop. Next I will have to get rear suspension bushes because, well, I got the brakes, might as well get all the other optional extras.
My car is about to turn 13 years old. A car registered in 1978, (40 years old when it comes into force) will not have to be checked to see if it’s safe but mine will. It’s not a question of ‘fair’, it’s a question of ‘how safe is that car driving towards me?’
Now hang on. I know of at least one old Hillman Imp in regular use around here. Other old stuff too. There is an annual old car rally nearby. The place is riddled with cars that do not need a roadworthiness test.
It’s true that by far, most of these old cars are very well looked after but there will always be a few shitty ones on the road.
I absolutely agree with stopping paying road tax on a car that’s already paid thousands.
But a car that isn’t safe to be on the road is a danger to more than its occupants.
My brother had a Capri, the flash bugger, and it was shit. I think it was one of the ones he totalled.
Jensen Interceptor though, that was a good one back when petrol was affordable. It was Mad Max’s choice. I once saw one in a scrapyard and I really wanted that engine.
Now, I wish I had bought it.