New car modification rules could see drivers hit with hefty fines under government plans.
In the proposals, the government says it wants to stop “tampering” of road vehicles for safety and environmental reasons.
The plans, titled Modernising Vehicles Standards, are currently out to public consultation.
It could “create offences for tampering with a system, part of component of a vehicle intended or adapted to be used on a road”.
The plans read: “This will enable us to address existing gaps in the legislation, ensuring cleaner and safer vehicles.
“We will create new offences for tampering with non-road mobile machinery and for advertising ‘tampering’ services or products.”
According to the BBC, the proposed changes have sparked concern among drivers who restore old vehicles.
Barry Guess, organiser of the Car-nival event in Oxfordshire, said it could impact races, rallies and classic car restoration.
He added: “There are elements which rings alarm bells.
“We could find ourselves in a situation that valid restrictions that are brought in for safety could impact the day-to-day operations of companies and the motorsport community.
“As they stand, the proposals would stop a competitor from removing the normal seat and fitting a purpose-built competition seat which is much, much safer than the original.
“Components like seatbelts and various components get changed – they could be deemed as being tampering.”
Meanwhile Transport Minister Trudy Harrison was reported to have said the consultation looked at a future technology to prevent alterations which “negatively impact on road safety, vehicle security and the environment”.
She added: “Department for Transport officials have been instructed to ensure that proposals do not prevent activities such as restoration, repairs or legitimate improvements to classic cars, or do any damage to the motorsports businesses involved in these activities.”
The consultation closes on November 22.
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