IVA, which is the UK’s national vehicle type approval scheme run by the DVSA for those producing very small numbers of vehicles as an alternative to EC Whole Vehicle Type Approval and National Small Series Type Approval (both administered by the Vehicle Certification Agency).
It has come in for criticism since its inception. As far back as 2012, vehicle manufacturers complained to CMback that the resources set aside for it by what was then Vosa were inadequate.
A DVSA spokesman told CM a review of the system had been prompted by complaints about the application form being too complicated, as well as not supporting multiple applications.
He also admitted issues with customers being “unsighted of progression” and being given no expected examination date at the point of application.
The agency said in February it was “mapping the current end-to-end process from application to test” and seeking to “identify and implement quick wins” in a new service level agreement (SLA) that will be in place by 1 April. This will focus on the time between IVA application and actual test, said the spokesman, with a target of carrying out tests within 20 working days of receipt of application.
The agency has also recently appointed an IVA national operations manager, Nick Paling, to oversee the process and testing of vehicles across DVSA sites.
Currently, goods vehicles over 3.5 tonnes GVW can only get an IVA test at one of six DVSA test stations nationwide or two private facilities. Three new DVSA sites and 17 authorised testing facilities (ATFs) have already been approved for IVA testing and a further 24 applications for authorisation are ongoing, said the spokesman.
The DVSA currently has 60 active IVA examiners in Great Britain and will be adding a minimum of 22 more before an expected increase in demand in October, as the final phase of European Whole Vehicle Type Approval is rolled out, he added.