Automotive Type Approval Engineer

Department For Transport
Date Posted
4th October 2018
Engineering and Manufacturing
Inside IR35
£16 to £35 Per Hour

General Description

The Vehicle Certification Agency is the United Kingdom competent authority and one of the European Union competent authorities for the issue of international type approvals for vehicle systems, components and complete vehicles. The technical aspects of type approval work break down into three main elements - vehicle system testing (e.g. brakes, exhaust emissions), inspection of production specification vehicles, and component testing (i.e. devices that may not be vehicle specific like tyres, lamps, seat belts),

The role of the type approval engineer is to liaise with the manufacturer to obtain the technical specification of the type to be approved, to review that information in order to select the tests that need to be carried out and the variants/versions of the type to be tested, to arrange for the tests to be conducted (if necessary appraising the facility for suitability beforehand), to carry out the tests, to finalise the information documents, and finally to compile a technical report and a draft approval certificate.

Each engineer is expected to gain a broad knowledge of Type Approval legislation, Conformity of Production requirements and current and new vehicle legislation. Testing is carried out or witnessed at manufacturer’s site or proving grounds, so occasional travelling is necessary.

A good technical understanding of motor vehicle technology and excellent interpersonal skills including excellent organisational skills and attention to detail are required as this job involves handling large amounts of data.

Main duties:

  • To carry out or witness tests and component/vehicle specification inspections to the requirements of EC, ECE, NTA and other technical standards
  • To carry out engineering assessments in lieu of tests as necessary.
  • To manage and complete approval documentation for each test or assessment and to enter necessary data onto computer job records including preparation of test reports and draft approval certificates.
  • To conduct worst case meetings and variant selection meetings with manufacturers and to record the outcomes
  • To develop and maintain expert technical knowledge.
  • To assist technical support branch with expert knowledge.
  • To develop and improve VCA procedures for specific customers
  • To answer queries from manufacturers, agencies and others.
  • For all of the above, to follow laid down VCA procedures and quality requirements.


Essential Criteria

• Professional qualification in automotive or mechanical, or electrical engineering or several years experience in a vehicle testing/approval environment.
• Knowledge of vehicle type approval procedures and technical standards.
• Middle management skills to organise own work, and to organise and control projects.
• Ability to adapt to changing priorities and workload.
• Natural aptitude for an excellent team working approach.
• Interpersonal skills to communicate effectively in a customer oriented environment.
• Flexibility in working patterns.
• Willingness to travel extensively in the UK and overseas (including stays of up to 4 weeks several times per year, if required)
• English language skills with a need to read, comprehend and apply complex technical regulations

Desirable Criteria

• Several years’ experience in automotive engineering, preferably in design or development, or the completion a recognised apprenticeship.
• Design, development and/or testing experience in automotive emissions.
• Interest in vehicle technology and the automotive industry.
• Foreign language would be beneficial


From the Civil Service Science and Engineering framework:
• Secure, maintain and develop relevant technical expertise

  • Maintains up to date scientific/engineering knowledge
  • Has a broad knowledge of the science/technology involved across their project/programme area and can evaluate other’s work and link between projects
  • Identifies appropriate sources of information to support their work (e.g. appropriate journals and colleagues)

• Understand and comply with the statutory (and non-statutory) requirements of my current role

  • Understands how and why the requirements are relevant to their role
  • Understands and explains what needs to be done to satisfy these requirements
  • Knows some of the detail of the statutory (and non-statutory) requirements

• Apply scientific / technical knowledge

  • Identifies and chooses between different methodologies, proposes new approaches to projects and programmes
  • Understands the limitations of their own knowledge and expertise and knows when to seek further advice, escalate issues and highlight the need for further training and development
  • Identifies links from broader areas and new technologies


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