3 November 2020

How will a second lockdown affect the motor trade

By Road Runner
Mechanic working during lockdown

With a second lockdown due to come into effect across England, it is likely that garages, service departments within car dealerships, mobile mechanics and recovery operators will be allowed to continue trading, while car showrooms, auction houses and car washes will be forced to close.

According to advice and guidance on the Government website, certain businesses and venues will be forced to close. This includes:

  • all non-essential retail, including, but not limited to, clothing and electronics stores, vehicle showrooms, travel agents, betting shops, auction houses, tailors, car washes, tobacco and vape shops.
  • Non-essential retail can remain open for delivery to customers and click-and-collect.

Please note: the guidance above may be subject to change, check for updates here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/new-national-restrictions-from-5-november#businesses-and-venues

I’m a motor trade with a premises – what does it mean for me?

As with the first lockdown in March, car auctions, car washes and vehicle showrooms are required to close. Read more on cardealer.com.

The switch to online sales, delivery and collection

From Thursday 4th November, car dealers will be required to offer home deliveries or click-and-collect sales from the dealership. The sale will need to take place fully online with the collection being made at the dealership.

What about garages and service stations?

Garages and service stations were classed as an essential business during the first lockdown. On this basis, it seems reasonable to assume that they will be allowed to remain open to carry out MOTs, servicing and repairs for customers.

As a motor trader, can I still go into work?

Where you cannot work from home, the Government recommends that you should continue to travel to work.

To quote Government guidance online:

To help contain the virus, everyone who can work effectively from home must do so. Where people cannot do so (for instance people who work in critical national infrastructure, construction or manufacturing), they should continue to travel to work/attend their workplace. This is essential to keep the country operating and supporting vital sectors and employers.

See online for updates to the above.

Will customers be able to make use of another MOT extension?

It’s unlikely, as a lot of garages are still busy dealing with MOTs due now, as well as the ones from the first MOT extension.

Cardealer.com asked Stuart James, director of the Independent Garage Association, who said that he ‘really didn’t think’ one would be put in place again this time around.


The Road Runner Insurance team will continue to operate to serve our customers during this time.

We’re with you.

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