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Advanced skills

How to: Use your own car for a driving test

1 min read • Nov 26, 2018
Use your own car for a driving test

Most people take their driving test in their driving instructor’s car, but there is no rule to stop you using your own car for a driving test. The vehicle must meet a set of strictly-enforced rules.

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One of the first things to remember is the fact that you will not get a manual driving licence if you pass your test in an automatic vehicle. As far as the good people at the DVSA are concerned, a manual vehicle is anything with three pedals – accelerator, brake and clutch. Anything with two pedals is automatic.

The rules for using your own car for a driving test

Your vehicle must:

  • Have four wheels.
  • Be capable of reaching speeds of at least 62.5mph.
  • Be fitted with a speedometer that measures speed in mph.
  • Have no warning lights illuminated (like the check engine light).
  • Display L-plates (or D-plates in Wales) on the front and back without obstructing the examiner’s or your own view.
  • Have a max authorised mass/gross vehicle weight of 3500kg.

By law, your vehicle requires:

  • Insurance.
  • A properly-displayed and valid tax disc.
  • A current MOT (if applicable).
  • The vehicle should also be a smoke-free environment.

The vehicle must be fitted with the following for the examiner:

  • A seatbelt.
  • A passenger head restraint that forms an integral part of the seat.
  • An interior rear view mirror.

You may use a hire car for your test if:

  • It’s fitted with dual controls.
  • It meets all of the rules stated above.
  • If it has been subject to a recall and the work required has not been carried out. More information is available on Direct.gov.uk.

You may not use the following vehicles:

  • Most convertibles
  • Panel vans
  • BMW Mini convertible
  • Ford KA convertible
  • Toyota IQ
  • VW Beetle convertible

If your vehicle doesn’t meet the above rules then your test will be cancelled and you will lose your fee.

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