Becoming an MOT Tester

mechanic fixing a car engine with their wrench

What does it take to become an MOT tester vehicle technician? Unfortunately, there’s a lot more to it than just knowing how a car engine works.

There’s a lot of risks involved with driving, all of which you need a knowledge of and should be able to identify when examining a vehicle.

That means there’s a lot of legalities surrounding MOT testing, which requires a whole host of training to be able to do well.

So, what can you do to make sure you become a successful MOT tester? Below, we provide all the essential information you will need.


To be eligible for an MOT tester position, you need to have the following in order to go any further:

  • A full UK driving license, especially in the vehicles you want to test.
  • Be a fully qualified mechanic with four years’ experience working with the type of vehicle you wish to test.
  • Hold no criminal charges for any MOT-related or motor-related incidents, acts of violence or intimidation.
  • Be of ‘good repute’ according to the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency.

Essentially, to be an MOT tester, you need a clean record and a driving license for the vehicle you intend to work with.

You also need to be able to work with the vehicle you intend to fix/perform MOT tests. A working knowledge of these vehicles is extremely beneficial for a number of reasons.

Firstly, you will be familiar with the said vehicle and get to quickly identify faults if any occur. It also helps the customer feel reassured as they will realise you know what you’re doing.

It’s not enough simply to be a qualified mechanic, however. If you really want to be an MOT tester, you need to have four years’ experience working full time.

The reason for this is that you need some more hands-on knowledge from the profession itself, something that engineering school can’t teach you.


To test class 3, 4, 5 or 7 vehicles (cars, buses, light commercial vehicles, etc.) you must have the correct qualifications and/or accreditations.

The following qualifications are what’s accepted to become an MOT tester

NVQs, SVQs and VRQs

You need to have an NVQ, SVQ or VRQ in one of the following in order to be properly qualified for an MOT tester:

  • Vehicle Mechanical and Electronic Systems, Maintenance and Repair (light vehicle or heavy vehicle), level 3
  • Vehicle Technician, Vehicle Maintenance and Repair (light vehicle or heavy vehicle), level 3

City and Guilds

Alternatively, you can qualify for an MOT testing course if you present the following City and Guilds qualification in:

  • Motor Vehicle Craft Studies, modular - part 3 (requires 3 modules)
  • Motor Vehicle Craft Studies, 381 (full part 2 or 3)
  • Motor Vehicle Craft Studies, pre 381 syllabi (full part 2)
  • Light or Heavy Vehicle Mechanics Craft Studies (full part 2 or 3)
  • Motor Vehicle Technician’s Certificate (full part 1)
  • Automotive Qualification, NVQ level 3
  • Repair and Servicing of Road Vehicles, 383 (full level 2 or 3)

Other Qualifications

You may also take the MOT testing course if you possess any of the following qualifications:

  • IMI Level 3 National Diploma in Vehicle Maintenance and Repair (light vehicle or heavy vehicle)
  • National Craft Certification with a specialism of Vehicle Maintenance and Electronic Systems
  • Business and Technology Education Council (BTEC), National Certificate or Ordinary National Certificate (ONC) in Motor Vehicle Engineering studies
  • Scottish Vocational Educational Council National Certificate in Vehicle Mechanics and Systems (part 3)


You may also take the MOT testing course if you have an Insitute of the Motor Industry (IMI) or Automotive Technician Accreditation (ATA) in the following:

  • Light Vehicle Diagnostic Technician
  • Light Vehicle Inspection Technician

Above all, you must have a proper and valid IMI or ATA accreditation ID card which you will get after receiving your qualification.

You must also have a valid IMI or ATA accreditation ID card. You’ll have received this when you got your qualification.


Once you embark to become an MOT tester, you will have to get through a course and take part in a demonstration test to earn the qualification.

Every year, you will have to take an assessment test to ensure you are up to speed on all the latest developments in the automotive industry to stay on top of any potential hazards which may arise.

Even if you’re an experienced MOT tester, the annual assessment is compulsory. Servicing and repairing is a constantly changing field with new regulations and laws being introduced constantly.

Start your journey into becoming an MOT tester today by visiting our courses page.