One in five cars fails its first MoT

With the build quality of new cars being vastly improved in recent years, what proportion of them would fail their first MoT?

I think it’s a really good question and consumer website honestjohn.co.uk has looked at 24.5 million MoT records and found out for us.

And the result is that one in five cars registered in 2008 failed their first MoT, with testers most likely to fail cars from French firms Renault, Citroen and Peugeot.

Sadly, it’s the Renault Magane which takes the number one spot for likely to fail.

This is data that VOSA has fought to keep secret from car owners for years and this is the first time it’s been made available to the public.

Of those that failed the MoT, the most common reasons were lighting and signalling, followed closely by tyres, headlight aim and issues with the driver’s view of the road.

European manufacturers are at the bottom of the table for first MoT failures. The worst performer, Renault, was followed by the British-built Mini, with Citroen taking third from bottom.

A surprise addition to the bottom ten list, given that their cars are traditionally a byword for durability, is Volvo with more than 5,800 of the Swedish manufacturer’s 26,000 2008-registered cars failing their first MoT (though some of their range is built in Belgium).

By contrast, the top ten best-performing cars is made up of Japanese manufacturers, with the top three places going to Lexus, Suzuki and Honda. Troubled Swedish manufacturer Saab edges in at number four.

Top 5 pass rates by manufacturer
1.   Lexus 88%
2.   Suzuki 86%
3.   Honda 85%
4.   Saab      84%
5.   Toyota 83%

Bottom 5 pass rates by manufacturer
1.   Renault     76%
2.   Mini           76%
3.   Citroen      76%
4.   Chevrolet  76%
5.   Peugeot     77%

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