MOT test numbers rebound as garages prepare for ‘Super September’ surge

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UK motorists were given a six-month extension to MOTs which were due between March 30 and July 31, 2020, as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. During this time, 5.3 million less tests took place, compared to the same period in 2019.

Because of this, drivers began to re-book the postponed tests from September 2020 onwards.

This has resulted in a massive surge in demand for MOTs from September until December this year. 

The AA has dubbed the increases “Super September”, with more than five and a half million cars having legally delayed their MOT.

A fifth (20 percent) of drivers used the extension granted during the height of the pandemic, including 71 percent in Northern Ireland.

The data from the DVSA, through a Freedom of Information (FOI) request from, shows 45 percent more MOTs took place in the second quarter of 2021, compared to 2020.

Karen Rotberg, co-founder of, commented on the data.

She said: “While MOT test numbers between April and June are still some way off 2019 levels, it’s interesting to see numbers have recovered by almost half, or some 1.7 million tests.

“That means approximately half of the 3.4 million additional MOT tests that took place between September and December last year have already been conducted.


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“So, while this autumn and winter will still be busier than normal for garages, we don’t expect it to be quite to the same extent as last year.”

However, test numbers were still down 32 percent compared to Q2 2019. 

Continental Tyres’ analysis of MOT data from 2018 to 2020 has found that September 2021 will see 23 percent more MOTs booked than usual, with even higher increases predicted for later in the year.

Around 42 percent more test bookings anticipated in November 2021, and 51 percent more expected in December 2021.

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