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Vehicles suitable for a category B practical driving test

​​Unsuitable vehicles ​

Vehicles used for driving tests must allow the examiner all round vision to allow them to see approaching vehicles particularly when the vehi​cle is at an angle emerging at a junction or reversing.

Some vehicles have good forward vision but have large blind spots to the rear and present examiners with problems of observation. The vast majority of hatchbacks, saloons and estate cars are suitable for tests.

The following vehicles have been identified as unsuitable for a practical driving test:

  • left hand drive vehicles
  • all panel vans
  • Fiat 500 convertible
  • Ford KA convertible
  • BMW Mini convertible
  • VW Beetle convertible
  • Toyota IQ

Recording of practical driving tests

Audio or visual recording of a driving test is not permitted, irrespective of the position of the recording equipment and which aspect of the test is being recorded. If it becomes apparent that audio or visual recording equipment is active either in a test vehicle or externally, the examiner will politely ask those responsible to switch off the equipment. If the candidate cannot do this quickly or easily, the test will be ended and the candidate will lose their test fee.

Electronic handbrakes

If the vehicle presented for test is fitted with an electronic handbrake it must be capable of being manually overridden and operated as a conventional handbrake.

The vehicle must be legal and roadworthy and have no warning lights showing, eg the airbag warning light.

A passenger head restraint must also be fitted as an integral part of the front passenger seat.

Vehicles with automatic transmission

If you pass your test using a vehicle with automatic transmission your full licence will only entitle you to drive vehicles with automatic transmission. You will have to take a further test using a vehicle with manual transmission to entitle you to drive manual transmission vehicles.

Category B + E driving test

Vehicles used for a B+E driving test must be capable of drawing a trailer with a gross vehicle weight (GVW) of a least 1000kgs. The trailer must not carry a load and must conform to the prescribed specifications.

When a person passes the B+E practical driving test using a vehicle with automatic transmission that person will only be authorised to drive a category B vehicle (motorcar) with automatic transmission when drawing a trailer with a gross vehicle weight exceeding 750kgs.

Trailer specifications for the B + E driving test

The trailer must:

  • have a GVW of no less than 1000kgs
  • not be greater than 6.7 metres in length (excluding the draw bar)
  • not be greater than 2.3 metres in width
  • not be carrying a load
  • have an "L" learner plate displayed on the front of the towing vehicle and also on the rear of the trailer
  • be fitted with an over run brake
  • have brake lights, rear lights, direction indicators and rear retro reflectors fitted to the rear
  • be equipped with wings or similar fittings to catch, so far as practicable, mud or water thrown up by the rotation of the road wheels
  • display a registration plate on the rear which must be the same number as that displayed on the rear of the towing vehicle
  • be fitted with a device which is designed to stop the trailer automatically in the event of a separation of the main coupling when the trailer is in motion (if such a device is not fitted)
  • there must be a secondary coupling attached to the towing vehicle and trailer in such a way that, in the event of a separation of the main coupling when the trailer is in motion, the draw bar of the trailer would be prevented from touching the ground; and there would be some residual steering of the trailer
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