What is Motability?

  • What Car? explains Motability cars
  • Find out what's included and how much it will cost you
  • Are you eligible for a new car on the Motability Scheme?
Words ByMatthew Burrow

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I see plenty of signs for the Motability Scheme at my local car dealer. What is Motability and is it something that could be of interest to me?

Well, in essence the Motability Scheme is a way to help disabled people remain mobile for very little or no cost. If you qualify and big savings on a new car float your boat, it could definitely be of interest.

I’m interested. How does it work?

Motability is a national charity that leases cars, mobility scooters and wheelchair-accessible vehicles (WAVs), to people who qualify for the mobility allowance from the government.

Very little or no cost, you say. What's the catch?

If you can afford to swap your mobility payment for the lease of a car, and you are eligible, then there’s no catch.

OK, so what else do I need to consider?

If you already get a mobility allowance from the Government, you'd exchange this for the lease of the Motability car over the course of three years. If you rely on this cash and the Motability car won't replace one you currently pay for yourself, then it might not be a cost-effective swap.

Got it. Are any other costs included?

Yes. You get a brand new car to keep for three years, which comes with insurance, servicing, maintenance, windscreen cover, replacement tyres and breakdown assistance included. You don't even have to pay VED. Your biggest costs will be fuel and potentially an up-front payment on your car, although there are lots to choose from that don't need you to pay a penny. The only other cost is a Β£75 excess should you need to make a claim on the insurance.

How do I find out I'm eligible for Motability?

This is where it gets more complicated. If you receive any of these four allowances: Higher Rate Mobility Component of Disability Living Allowance (HRMC DLA); the Enhanced Rate of the Mobility Component of Personal Independence Payment (ERMC PIP); the War Pensioners' Mobility Supplement (WPMS); or the Armed Forces Independence Payment (AFIP), there's a good chance that you can get a car through the scheme. The best thing to do is to have an assessment and they'll tell you what you can and can't claim. You can find more information at the gov.uk website.

I think I am eligible. What now?

Head to Motability and find out what cars are available. All the big manufacturers are on there and the deals are updated on a very regular basis.

I've found a few cars that I like the look of and can afford. How do I find out if they're any good?

That's where we come in. Take a look at whatcar.com/car-reviews where you'll find comprehensive reviews covering every car on sale today. Because the cost of fuel is the biggest expense, we'd suggest taking a look at our True MPG calculator to find out which of your selection will be the cheapest to run.

I've made my decision. How do I get my new car?

You need to go to your local dealer. You can find your closest dealer on the Motability website|utmcmd=organic|utmctr=(not%20provided)&utmv=-&utmk=148970038).