ONE IN FIVE CARS FAILS ITS FIRST MOT, FINDS MOTORING CONSUMER CHAMPION HONESTJOHN.CO.UK

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The MoT Files

ANALYSIS OF 24.5 MILLION RECENTLY OBTAINED MOT RECORDS BY CONSUMER CHAMPION HONESTJOHN.CO.UK REVEALS RENAULTS ARE MOST LIKELY TO FAIL THEIR FIRST MOT

The MoT Files

An analysis of 24.5 million MoT records obtained by consumer motoring champion, honestjohn.co.uk, has revealed 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.

The research byhonestjohn.co.uk involved examining tens of millions of records obtained from the Vehicle Operator and Services Agency (VOSA) through the Government’s OpenData scheme. It is data that VOSA fought to keep secret from car owners for years.

Now honestjohn.co.uk is publishing it as The MoT Files at

honestjohn.co.uk/mot

– the first time this information has ever been available to the public in such detail.

The data shows that between 1 October 2010 and 30 September 2011, one in five cars (352,000 in total) failed their first MoT. The most common reasons were lighting and signalling (164,837 failures), followed closely by tyres (96,760 failures), headlight aim (82,555 failures) and issues with the driver’s view of the road (80,605 failures).

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.

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.

Broken down by model, the detailed data reveals that the worst performing family car was the Renault Megane, with only 71% of cars registered in 2008 passing their first MoT. The Renault Megane was most likely to fail on lighting and signalling problems, but was also three times more likely to fail on steering faults than the industry average. The MINI One also performed relatively poorly, with 25% of 2008-registered vehicles failing their first MoT, though primarily for minor faults including lighting and signalling and the driver’s view of the road. The top model was the Suzuki Splash with a 90 per cent pass rate in its first MoT.

The publication of honestjohn.co.uk’s MoT Files means that consumers will for the first time be able to spot cars common failures by make, model, year of registration and postcode based on empirical data.

Honestjohn.co.uk’s MoT Files represents a significant step forward for big data. As one of the very first instances of a huge data set interpreted in such a way, it will help the average consumer to make better informed decisions about their next car purchase.

Daniel Harrison, editor of honestjohn.co.uk, commented: “This is information that has been kept from car owners for many years. VOSA even fought to keep it out of public view. It’s the first time that this information has been made available in this detail, and in a format that makes it easy to access.

Hard-pressed families can take this information and use it to ensure that they’re not failing a MoT on something that can be easily fixed beforehand. Honestjohn.co.uk’s MoT Files demonstrates that many failure items are down to the owner, rather than inherent fault with the car. Families using the data that comes from the 24.5 million records will be better prepared for their MoTs and be able to keep better control over the cost of motoring.”

Top 5 pass rates by manufacturer

1.   Lexus88%
2.   Suzuki86%
3.   Honda85%
4.   Saab84%
5.   Toyota83%

Bottom 5 pass rates by manufacturer

1.   Renault76%
2.   Mini76%
3.   Citroen76%
4.   Chevrolet76%
5.   Peugeot77%

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