Why are young drivers to putting off needed car repairs?

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RAC Breakdown spokesperson Rod Dennis said: “It’s clear from the findings of our research that inflation and the cost-of-living crisis are causing drivers to cut back on car repairs, which will almost certainly lead to an overall reduction in the roadworthiness of vehicles using the roads. But the sheer extent to which younger drivers are being affected by rising prices is also a major cause for concern. Many will be in older, cheaper vehicles anyway meaning the risks of something going wrong if they don’t look after them properly could be higher than for the general driving population.

“As a country we can ill afford to have more unroadworthy cars being driven. Last year, an average of five people were killed on our roads every day, a figure that hasn’t reduced significantly in years. It’s also the case that young drivers are much more likely to be involved in collisions – in fact, young men aged between 17 and 24 are four times more likely to be killed or seriously injured compared with all car drivers aged over 25.

“This is why the RAC continues to oppose government proposals to increase the gap between mandatory MOTs for older vehicles from 12 months to two years. This was being billed as a cost-saving to drivers, but we strongly believe it would likely lead to an increase in the number of unroadworthy vehicles in circulation and could very well prove to be a false economy as a result of problems going undetected for longer, and ultimately costing more to repair.

“Our own research also found a clear majority of drivers did not support this idea, viewing it as potentially dangerous, so we urge the Government to publish its response to the consultation earlier this year and finally put the matter to rest.2

“Proper car maintenance is not only vital for road safety, it also helps keep costs down in the long run. This is why we’re working hard to make it easier and more cost-effective for drivers to look after their cars. We’ve launched a new specially designed MOT product that, at £44.99, bundles the annual test at one of our 600 approved garages with a 20-point vehicle health check worth £20, along with £20 that can be redeemed against items bought from the online RAC Shop – including everything from new car batteries, to oil, wiper blades and replacement lightbulbs. It’s available exclusively via the free myRAC app.

“We also now have Mobile Mechanics who can service or repair vehicles at customers’ homes or workplaces in 20 of the biggest cities – removing the hassle often associated with taking a car to a garage. Increasingly, when our patrols can’t fix members at the roadside, they will tow them home and then arrange for a Mobile Mechanic to come and repair the car.

“What’s more, with prices that rival many garages it can be a really affordable route to keeping a car in good working order, too.”

More information on servicing and repairs that can be delivered by the RAC’s team of Mobile Mechanics can be found online at www.rac.co.uk/car-care/mobile-mechanic. 

Cost-conscious drivers can also save up to 6p a litre on fuel by downloading the myRAC app from the App Store or Google Play.

What do you make of the RAC’s findings? Leave your comments below.

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