The Motability Scheme helps disabled people in the UK to use their government-funded Mobility Allowance to drive a brand new car, helping over 3 million people since its roll out in the 1970s.
Here are answers to many of the common questions people ask about the scheme.
To join the Motability Scheme, you need to currently benefit from one of the following government funded Mobility Allowances:
The Motability Scheme helps disabled people be more mobile by exchanging their their Mobility Allowance for a brand new car. It's only the mobility element of the allowance that is exchanged for a car, not the whole allowance. You also need at least 12 months' award length remaining.
Motability’s all-inclusive 3 year package includes:
Motability will insure up to two people drive the car. The Mobility Allowance recipient does not need to be one of these named drivers. So, if you qualify for a Motability car but don't actually drive, you can nominate two drivers (who could be relatives, friends or carers) to drive the car on your behalf.
Restrictions do apply, including to drivers who are aged under 25. It’s worth knowing that additional drivers can be added to the policy (at an additional cost).
Even though the insurance is classed as fully comprehensive, the named drivers are not insured to drive any other vehicles. Furthermore, no one else is covered to drive the Motability car even if they have their own fully comprehensive insurance. In addition, the policy also does not cover personal belongings in the car.
Motability adaptations generally fall into 3 distinct categories:
All Motability cars can be adapted to suit any individual's specific needs.
It depends on the Motability vehicle that you choose. Most cars will require all of your Mobility Allowance, though there are normally around 100 vehicles that cost less than the full allowance, giving you some money back.
Remember, it's only the Mobility element of your allowance that is exchanged for a car, not your whole allowance.
There are hundreds of vehicles available that require no upfront Advance Payment, but if you choose a more expensive model, it’s likely you will need to pay an Advance Payment at the beginning of the agreement. This can range from £49 up to many thousands of pounds.
No. Although the Motability car is leased to you, the ownership of the vehicle remains with Motability Operations during the 3 year term (5 for Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles), which means it has to be handed back. At the end of the agreement there are two options:
Customers who have very low mileage on their car, have expensive adaptations or who are waiting for their new Motability car to arrive can sometimes extend their lease. Call the Motability Customer Services team for more information.
No. The Advance Payment is a one off, non-refundable payment that you make to the dealership before you take delivery of the Motability car. You may qualify for the £500 Good Condition Bonus if you return the vehicle at the end of the lease in an acceptable conditon (see section below).
It pays to take good care of your Motability car. At the end of your lease, Motability could pay you £500 (or £800 for WAVs) if the car hasn't suffered any serious damage. When you hand your car back, the dealer will take photos and carry out a full appraisal of the vehicle. If Motability decide that the car qualifies for the Good Condition Bonus, they'll send you a cheque in the post within 28 days.
Keeping your car in a good condition makes it easier for Motability to sell it after you've handed it back to them.
Yes. If you receive the Higher Rate Mobility Component of the Disability Living Allowance or the War Pensioners’ Mobility Supplement, you should qualify.
The Higher Rate Mobility Component of the Disability Living Allowance can be awarded to disabled children from the age of three. As the child’s parent or guardian you can order a Motability car to use on their behalf as soon as their allowance has been confirmed. The Motability car can be ordered in the run up to their third birthday.
No. You can still lease a Motability car even if you don’t drive. You simply need to nominate a maximum of two drivers who will be insured by Motability to drive the car on your behalf, as long as they live with (or within five miles of) you. Motability will also consider requests to include drivers who live more than five miles away.
Drivers under 25 are restricted to cars with engines that have a power output of 120 Brake Horse Power (BHP) or less and an insurance group of 16 or below (this does not apply to WAV drivers). In addition, only one driver under the age of 21 is allowed.
Standard metallic colours are included in the price, so you can choose a Motability car with metallic paint at no extra cost. Special edition paint or premium paint may cost extra.
No, not really. You just pay for the fuel.
The scheme also doesn't include screen wash or de-icer, although many dealers will top this up when you visit them for a service. They'll normally give your car a quick wash and vac too! If your vehicle uses Adblue, the dealer will also top this up for you if your vehicle is running low.
Motability won't pay any parking or speeding fines.
Yes. Motability will consider all requests to assign a personalised number plate to a Motability car as long as the plate is owned by the recipient (or a partner who lives with the recipient). Contact Motability Customer Services to find out more.
There are several good options to help you to work out if a car will be right for you:
You can order your next Motability car three months before the end of your existing lease, but we think it’s a good idea to start thinking about your next car a few months before then.
Yes. If you have a privately-owned car, you can trade it in at your chosen Motability dealership. The money from the sale of the vehicle could go straight back to you or, if you want to choose a more expensive car, you could decide to put it towards an Advance Payment.
When you visit a Motability dealerships to place an order you will need to bring with you:
If there's going to be a nominated driver, they will ideally need to be present and have their driving licence with them.
Yes. The insurance cover means you can visit anywhere within the European Union, as well as Iceland, Norway, Switzerland and Liechtenstein in your Motability car. You will need to contact the Motability Assist Foreign Travel team a few weeks before you travel and complete a special form to ensure you are fully covered.
Here’s a list of some of the more common acronyms associated with the Motability scheme and what the letters stand for.
PIP – Personal Independence Payment
HRMC-DLA – Higher Rate Mobility Component of the Disability Living Allowance
WPMS – War Pensioners’ Mobility Supplement
AFPI – Armed Forces Independence Payment
WAV – Wheelchair Accessible Vehicle
DWP – Department for Work and Pensions
DVLA - Driver and Vehicle Licencing Agency
SUV – Sports Utility Vehicle
MPV – Multi Purpose Vehicle
AP – Advance Payment
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Motability’s all-inclusive 3 year / 60,000 mile package includes:
Insurance cover for 2 named drivers is included.
The cost of servicing and maintaining your car is included.
Full breakdown cover provided by RAC Motability Assist is included.
Tyre and windscreen repair and replacement cover is included.
Motability will automatically tax the vehicle every year.
Many helpful adaptations are available at no extra cost.