Since 2000 a National
Car Test has operated in Ireland. All private cars - INCLUDING SECOND HAND
IMPORTS - are subject to the test.
The picture on the right
is taken from the National Car
Testing Service Official Website.
All 4 year old cars and older need to be tested.
Subsequent tests are due every 2 years. Vintage cars (those old
hand cranked Duisenburg's you folks were planning to bring over, and, more officially, those over 30 years of age) and cars
permanently based on islands with no ferry service are exempt from the test. But, all cars 10 years and older must take the test annually.
The tests are carried
out by a private company using sophisticated electronic machines and that most delicate of instruments - a well trained mechanic's eye. The items to be tested include suspension
equipment, steering, lighting and signaling, vehicle identification (e.g.
proper registration plates), wheels and tyres, transmission, bodywork, chassis
and chassis components, braking, exhaust emissions.
Test statistics are located on the Car Testing website. Roughly half of all cars taking the test pass first time round, with cars more than a decade old causing a massive fall in the average. Happily, more than 90pc of all vehicles pass second time through and this figure includes these older vehicles.
Test centres are scattered
around the country. There are plenty of anomalies with the locations, such
as in Wexford where the testing centre isn't in the biggest town but in more
centrally located Enniscorthy. So, for many of us, it's a hassle to get to
the testing centre.
It is an offence to drive
an untested car once the test date passes.
You can book a reservation
for the test online or check the nearest location at the National Car Test website. The email is: email@example.com