DVLA - V5c motor caravan rejection

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Tom_DAF
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DVLA - V5c motor caravan rejection

Postby Tom_DAF » Fri May 04, 2018 7:21 pm

Hi All,

Got some disappointing news today from the DVLA. I sent the paperwork off to register as a motor caravan but got a cookie-cutter rejection letter saying I will be a "box van".

They were fine with the interior as it met all the requirements (although it looks a bit home made), their problem was that "cannot be identified externally as a motor caravan".

I'd like to appeal and eventually get the truck registered as a motor caravan. Anyone else been through this process?

On the plus side the DVSA were helpful and confirmed that (with a bit of paperwork) they would consider it tacho exempt as it would not be used to carry goods. Still makes MOT and insurance more complicated.
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Ivan C
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Re: DVLA - V5c motor caravan rejection

Postby Ivan C » Fri May 04, 2018 7:32 pm

There was a rash of this a few years ago but I thought it had all calmed down. There's a fair bit of info. on the sbmcc site about what you can do.
It's all a bit stupid as you have an obligation to describe the vehicle as what it is, not what it looks like.
I'd reply with examples of vehicles of similar appearance which have been classed as motorcaravans and ask why they are discriminating against yours.
Ivan C

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Tom_DAF
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Re: DVLA - V5c motor caravan rejection

Postby Tom_DAF » Fri May 04, 2018 8:31 pm

Cheers Ivan, it's comforting to know that there's been others.

I've posted on the SBMCC too (same username) so hopefully they can give some insight.

I'll try and put together a compelling case, and share my progress. Took 5 weeks to get this simple letter though so I imagine this is a long game.

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Re: DVLA - V5c motor caravan rejection

Postby Ivan C » Fri May 04, 2018 8:46 pm

Tom, there's a "refusal to change" thread on the sbmcc site, if you're on there take a read at it - if you haven't already.
They do take their time, though some on the sbmcc site have been reporting a 7 day turnaround.
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Re: DVLA - V5c motor caravan rejection

Postby DaveS » Fri May 04, 2018 10:34 pm

As mentioned, this is an old chestnut, and seems largely down to interpretation (which is completely random, given the DVLA seem to like rules). So, the quote goes:

DVLA is required to record the details of vehicles for road safety and law enforcement. The body type information held on the vehicle record must describe what a vehicle actually looks like. This description, in addition to other distinguishing features, enables the police and other enforcement agencies to identify a particular vehicle. Therefore, the body type will not be changed unless the exterior of the vehicle actually appears to be a motor home.
This document provides general guidance relating to the registering of DIY motor caravans. Every effort has been made to ensure that it is factually correct but recipients should check with the producers of this document if they are unsure about any of the content.
Minimum features
In order for a converted vehicle to qualify as a motor caravan it must have certain minimum features, as follows:
 a door that provides access to the living accommodation
 a bed, which has a minimum length of 1800mm or 6 feet. This can be converted from seats used
for other purposes during the day but must be permanently fixed within the body of the vehicle
 a water storage tank or container on, or in, the vehicle
 a seating and dining area, permanently attached to the vehicle. The table may be detachable but
must have some permanent means of attachment to the vehicle. It is not good enough to have a
loose table
 a permanently fixed means of storage, a cupboard, locker or wardrobe
 a permanently fixed cooking facility within the vehicle, powered by gas or electricity
 at least one window on the side of the accommodation
If the vehicle has all of these features present, permanently fixed and installed properly, then it is a legal requirement to have it reclassified as a motor caravan on the V5C.

The two sections in italics are contradictory - the first says it must look like a motorhome, the latter says if these items are fitted it must be reclassified as a motor caravan. Its the latter point that seems key - if these things are fitted it MUST be reclassified as a motor caravan. It is a legal requirement. You need to force this point.

As mentioned above, lots of chat about this on various forums - including people doing things like spraying "this is a camper" or "This is not a bus" on the sides of their vans, ridiculous as this is.

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Re: DVLA - V5c motor caravan rejection

Postby bromleyxphil » Sat May 05, 2018 5:38 am

Just read through your website https://www.beepbeepafrica.com/ Tom. You should stick it on the end of your posts so more folk will see it, it’s good. Best of luck with the DVLA most of us have had some issues with them, the engine number on my truck was incorrect by one digit on their paperwork. It took me months and a letter....not e mail!! From MAN in Germany stating that that was the engine it left the factory with before they would change it. How I would go on with a new engine, I don’t know. I also never got the letter returned.

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Re: DVLA - V5c motor caravan rejection

Postby crinklystarfish » Sat May 05, 2018 6:35 am

As with all dealings with DVLA / DVSA, a great deal depends on who opens the letter.

As well as pointing out that the fit-out - by their own rules - requires body type reclassification to m/c it would be helpful to point them towards any number of existing trucks that look identical to yours that have been reclassified. You are more than welcome to use mine as an example (at the risk of me being required to become a box van :o )

Point out our style of vehicle has hundreds of precedents when it comes to satisfying the 'appearance' of a m/c.

Also, it would be helpful to outline your useage plans stressing the only purpose of the vehicle is to carry you / your kin and their personal effects to facilitate recreation by touring - at no stage will you carry goods, at no stage will there be any commercial interest. Point out, too, given your useage, that by refusing to change body type they are denying you your right / requirement to obtain appropriate insurance. Insurance companies won't / can't easily assess risk / provide cover unless the vehicle is classified as a m/c - ie a passenger vehicle not a goods vehicle.

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Re: DVLA - V5c motor caravan rejection

Postby Tom_DAF » Sat May 05, 2018 1:34 pm

Thanks Phil, website is a bit behind but we're putting in more effort to get it up to date. Cheers for the tip.

Thanks Steve for the offer, the last thing I want to do it cause problems for others, although I think it's unlikely.

Dave, the two clauses are indeed contradictory, unfortunately for me they guy who dealt with my case (Christian Mansell) didn't appreciate that and stuck to the party line. I'll put a case together and escalate the issue, then document what I did to help others.

The local police have offered to take a look at some photos, I'm hoping that they might be more helpful. A letter from them saying they don't see an issue would help my case.

Support and encouragement from the forum is appreciated, I've just got to keep pushing.

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Re: DVLA - V5c motor caravan rejection

Postby Ivan C » Sat May 05, 2018 6:03 pm

Tom, a class 4 mot, ie as presented, might help your case - qualified peeps see it as a motor caravan.
Their reply is also incorrect in that it's not as it left the factory possibly a picture of a military truck for illustration?
All the best anyway, you will get the better of them
Ivan C
Just had a gander at your website, impressive work so far.

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Tom_DAF
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Re: DVLA - V5c motor caravan rejection

Postby Tom_DAF » Sat May 05, 2018 7:27 pm

Yeah I might try and get a class 4 MOT, my nearest garage that can accept vehicles of that weight are going to come over and have a look. The owner seems like a great guy and said he'd give me some advice too.

When I called the DVLA I explained that this model isn't as standard, their response was that they just sent the standard letter. Pretty low-effort considering they took 5 weeks.

We'll try and update the website a bit this weekend, we have another timelapse to put up showing insulating and cladding the interior. Cheers for having a look.


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