What is the maximum age of a road worthy HGV?

The roadworthiness of a heavy-goods vehicle, or HGV, is determined by its condition and not its age. Meaning in the UK at least, a HGV can operate for as long as it likes so long as it meets condition standards as set out by the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA).

In the UK, HGVs must go through an annual test at a DVSA testing station. The driver or the company or entity responsible for the truck can book a test 93 days in advance and this test examines every aspect of a HGV to ensure it is fit for the road and for service. If a HGV fails a test, then any issues will need to be solved and another test has to be conducted. 

The test itself is very strict and it is not uncommon for a truck to fail for a faulty wiper blade or another minor issue. The test is necessary though to keep the roads safe. Annual tests for HGVs are also standard across most of the EU. Other areas of the world have different rules.

Despite age not being a factor for HGV roadworthiness, however, most fleets get rid of these vehicles when they reach ten or fifteen years old. The main reason for this is because over such a period of time far more efficient engines are made, and with HGVs guzzling fuel, it makes sense to get out with the old and in with the new. 

Furthermore, additional safety technologies emerge which keep fleet drivers and members of the public safer. An example being self-driving technology, which the UK Government are going to test out this year on motorways. Whether or not this technology will become mainstream is a debate for another time, however security features like ABS and Scania’s Active Prediction are proven to reduce accidents and make the roads a safer place. Faced with the prospect of not being as safe as they could be, a lot of HGV drivers simply upgrade.

Keeping an older truck and maintaining it isn’t all that costly, however, so fleets and drivers who choose to stick with an older model will be well served. We break hundreds of HGVs and LGVs and other goods vehicles every year and export thousands of used parts around the world. If you need any used truck parts, give our friendly sales team a call on 01262 601600 or email sales@mwtruckparts.co.uk to make a parts enquiry.

  • What is the maximum age of a road worthy HGV?