Last reviewed 8 June 2022

During the UK’s membership of the EU the procedures for approving most road vehicles and their parts before they could be sold or registered, were set out in various EU regulatory frameworks, known as type-approval frameworks.

This regulatory system was put in place to ensure automotive products meet the relevant safety and environmental standards and it is overseen by government approval and market surveillance authorities.

An interim scheme, National Type Approval in the UK, came into force on 1 January 2021 at the end of the transition period after the UK left the EU and the Department for Transport (DfT) has now put forward proposals to create a vehicle type-approval scheme for Great Britain as a permanent replacement for the interim scheme.

In a consultation open until 29 June 2022, available — here, the DfT invites comments on the proposed scheme which will be the basis for future changes to technical requirements to enable innovation, such as increased vehicle automation. The most recent revision of the EU framework for passenger and goods vehicles and trailers is Regulation (EU) 2018/858 and this retained EU regulation will form the basis of the new GB type-approval scheme.

The Vehicle Certification Agency (VCA) will be the sole type-approval authority and it will be empowered to issue these new GB type-approvals in accordance with the amended provisions. The revised system will cover passenger and goods vehicles (including cars, buses, vans and lorries), their components, systems and trailers.

To allow manufacturers time to prepare, the Government proposes that the new system will become mandatory from 1 July 2023 for new and as yet incomplete types of passenger and goods vehicles, and from 1 July 2024 for new types of trailer, replacement components and separate technical units.

Under the terms of the Northern Ireland Protocol, Regulation (EU) 2018/858 will continue to apply in Northern Ireland and EU type-approvals remain valid for the registration, placing on the market and entry into service of vehicles.