Will my diesel Skoda Superb fail its MOT?

Reader is concerned that his diesel-engined Skoda will fail the stricter MOT test introduced last year...

Skoda Superb

I bought a 2.0-litre diesel Skoda Superb on a 63-plate last summer. I decided not to get the car adjusted in line with the Volkswagen Group’s emissions recall, because I have read so many stories about the problems that the ‘x’ was creating on cars. 

My car’s MOT test is due in very soon and, in light of the introduction in May 2018 of stricter tests for diesel-engined cars, I’m wondering if the car will fail because I haven’t had the recall work done. I’d be grateful for your advice on this. 

Iain Helstrip

What Car? says…

Although there have been proposals that cars should automatically fail their MOT test if they haven’t had safety-related recall work carried out, at present there is no legislation enforcing this. 

The changes to the MOT test for diesels state that if a car’s exhaust emits any visible smoke, it will fail. Testers are also required to check that the car’s diesel particulate filter hasn’t been removed or tampered with. So we don’t believe the stricter tests will affect your car’s ability to pass. 

We posed your question to the Driver & Vehicle Standards Agency, which is responsible for overseeing MOT tests. A spokesperson said: “Motorists should respond to recalls to ensure that the vehicle complies with legal standards for both safety and emissions. The MOT includes a check of emissions but does not fully replicate the complexities of a type approval test.” 

The best executive cars and the ones to avoid

A good executive saloon needs to combine two opposing qualities: luxury and affordability. The best have efficient engines that make them cheap to run as company cars. Yet they also have plush interiors and enough soundproofing to keep them quiet on the motorway.

Ideally, they should also offer a comfortable ride and be enjoyable to drive. Plus, they should have a user-friendly dashboard layout and come equipped with the latest infotainment and safety technology.

Read our review of the new BMW 5 Series

Here we count down our top 10 – and name the cars that are best to steer clear of.

The best executive cars:

10. Mercedes C-Class

The C-Class is one of the three main choices when it comes to executive cars; the other two, naturally, being the Audi A4 and BMW 3 Series – both of which feature further up this list. The C-Class does a lot well, too – it's got a superb interior, most engines have low CO2 emissions and you get plenty of toys as standard. The entry-level C 220d diesel makes the most financial sense, though, and pulls strongly from low revs.

Our pick: C 220d SE

Read our full Mercedes C-Class review

Find a great deal on a Mercedes C-Class



Taking on the big German brands in the executive car market is a big task, but Jaguar has made a good first impression with its junior saloon, the XE. It's offered with a strong range of engines, and rewards keen drivers with excellent steering and sharp handling. It's let down a little when it comes to cabin quality, but a generous equipment list should entice company car drivers.

Our pick: 2.0d 180 Prestige

Read our full Jaguar XE review

Find a great deal on a Jaguar XE


Mondeo Man has grown up and now expects more from his car than ever before. Fortunately, the Mondeo has grown up too, and now offers a comfortable driving experience and spacious interior to match its Germanic rivals. We'd go for the mid-range 2.0-litre diesel engine, and pair it with Zetec trim which gets you everything you're going to want, including a heated windscreen, rear electric windows and a ski hatch in the rear for carrying longer items.

Our pick: 2.0 TDCi 150 Zetec

Read our full Ford Mondeo review

Find a great deal on a Ford Mondeo


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