YOUR CLASSIC FORD COULD BE BANNED IF A NUMBER OF RECOMMENDATIONS FROM THE DVLA BECOME LAW.
As we revealed last month, restored cars that have been put together using parts from a number of donor vehicles could be forced to run Q-plates, but now other problems with the DVLA's consultation document on vehicle inspections have emerged - and they could have grim repercussions for classic modifiers.
The problem involves the DVLA's measure to control what it calls 'radically altered vehicles - modified cars to you and us. As part of the recommedations for the inspection of RAV's, it's considering whether all RAV's will need inspection before being allowed on the roads. It could mean that cars with only a small amount of modification may be outlawed.
There is a fear that the DVLA will use the new computerised MoT system to get testers to make a note of what modifications a car has had and use that information to work out whether a car needs Single Vehicle Approval.
SVA is an expensive process aimed at mass-produced cars rather than modified classics. It tests cars to modern standards for safety and lighting requirements and emissions - all of which a 30-year-old design would struggle to pass. We feel that a super-MoT for modified classics where modifications are checked for safety would be a much better solution - and would address DVLA's safety fears.
"This could have a massive impact on the modified cars scene," said one specialist builder who wanted to remain anonymous. "It could make modifying your car much more difficult or even illegal in the worse case scenario. It's hard to say how far the new regulations could go, but it could affect a huge number of classic car owners.
"As well as this it could have a massive impact on the hundreds of specialists that earn a living working on performance cars as well as the thousands of people who work for the suppliers and manufacturers".
The DVLA is targetting vehicles that have been 'radically altered from its original specification'. Defining what a radically-altered car actually is has always been a grey area, but according to the consultation document, any modifications to chassis or bodywork means it has been altered. In theory, suspension or brake tweaks, bubble arches or a cage could tip you over the edge.
We need to make sure this doesn't happen if we want to keep enjoying our modified classic Fords.