MOT data made available to public

Consumers can now access data showing the MOT failure rates of various vehicles.

It comes after the BBC made a Freedom of Information request to make the data available to the public.

People can access the information on The Vehicle and Operator Services Agency (VOSA) website.

VOSA, which is part of the Department for Transport, is the agency responsible for licensing and testing vehicles and enforcing vehicle-related regulations.

The data appears to show a variation in the average frequency of MOT failures between different models even of the same age.

BBC News Freedom of Information specialist Martin Rosenbaum said: "It's another tool to make sure consumers are making a wise choice when buying a vehicle."

In two tables compiled by the BBC using only the most popular models - those with more than 20,000 MOTs in 2007 - the vehicles with the highest failure rate among those first used in 2004 were: Ford Transit Connect on 30.5%; Renault Megane on 28.1% and Ford Transit on 26.3%.

In a second table showing vehicles first used in 1997 and 10 years old at the time of their 2007 MOT, the models with the highest failure rates were: Rover 420 on 52.6%; Fiat Punto on 51.7% and Ford KA on 51.7%.

Commenting on the data, some internet bloggers argued worn out tyres, broken headlamp bulbs or cracked number plates had no bearing on the manufacturing quality of a vehicle and more popular makes would naturally tend to appear higher up the table.

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