UK – A new process developed by the Department for Transport (DfT), Society for Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) and Vehicle Certification Agency (VCA) could bring a reduction in costs of £10m per year across the bodybuilding and conversion industry. The alternative National Small Series would result in an estimated 15-fold decrease in the complexity of approving vehicles for use.

According to the SMMT, 55,000 multi-stage-built commercial vehicles (CVs) are registered in the UK every year. At present, a bodybuilder is required to create a new ‘type’ for each different base chassis that is used, creating a considerable administrative and financial burden. The bodybuilder would need to use the DVSA Individual Vehicle Approval (IVA) scheme.

The new system will enable vehicles of the same category and number of axles to be approved under one type, cutting heavy CV categories from over 60 to only four. Type approval costs could be reduced by up to 70%.

Mike Hawes, CEO of the SMMT, said: “By streamlining the hugely complicated and fragmented approval process, bureaucracy can be cut significantly, easing the pressure on over-stretched IVA centres.”