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New driving test explained – Changes every learner needs to know


A modernised version of the driving test has been proposed which is adding new elements to the current test and removing certain things that have become out of date. 

From Monday the 4th December 2017, drivers wanting to pass the test will have to follow the new rules. 

These rules will be enforced to drivers in England, Scotland and Wales and will only apply to car driving tests to begin with. 

DVSA has said that the changes are to make sure new drivers have the skills they’ll need to help them through a lifetime of safe driving. 

These are the four changes that will be implemented into the new practical examination: 

1. Independent driving 

The independent driving portion of the driving test is set to increase to 20 minutes – double the length it is currently. 

During this part of the driving test, motorists are expected to drive independently. This usually involves motorists being asked to get to a certain place following road signs without turn by turn instructions by the examiner. 

This section of the test will now account for roughly half of the overall examination. 

learner driverGETTY

Independent driving will increase to 20 minutes

2. Sat Nav integration

As part of the new examination drivers will be asked to follow instructions from a Sat Nav. This is the most talked about new introduction into the new driving test and also the most modern feature. The use of Sat Navs has become much more prolific and now the driving test recognises this. 

As part of the test you will need to know how to follow a Sat Nav in order to pass. 

The instructor will provide and set up the sat including inputting the route. This means that it doesn’t matter what sat nav or car you learn to drive in. 

DVSA confirmed that drivers cannot follow directions from their own sat nav and must use the one provided. 

One caveat is that one in every five tests will not use a sat nav and instead drivers will have to follow road signs instead. 

*****LINK**** old driving test story 

learner driver passes testGETTY

New driving test is being introduced in December 2017

3. Manoeuvre changes 

The ‘reverse around the corner’ and ‘turn in the road’ manoeuvre will no longer be tested but you will still be taught them by your instructor. 

There are now three manoeuvres that you will asked to perform 

– Parallel park

– Bay park 

-pull up on the right-hand side of the road, reverse for two car lengths and rejoin traffic

4. Show me, tell me

Under the new test, examiners will ask you two vehicle safety question during the driving test. 

The tell me question will be asked before you start the test and before you start driving. 

Now, the show me questions will be asked while you are driving – for example, showing how to use the windscreen wipers while driving. 

The cost of the test and length will not change under the new rules and you will still be marked in the same way – so you’ll pass if you make no more than 15 driving faults and no serious driving faults. 


Our roads are among the safest in the world.

Transport Minister, Andrew Jones


Transport Minister, Andrew Jones, said:

“Our roads are among the safest in the world. However, road collisions are the biggest killer of young people.

“These changes will help us to reduce the number of people killed or seriously injured on our roads and equip new drivers with the skill they need to use our roads safely.”

DVSA Chief Executive, Gareth Llewellyn, said:

“DVSA’s priority is to help you through a lifetime of safe driving.

“Making sure the driving test better assesses a driver’s ability to drive safely and independently is part of our strategy to help you stay safe on Britain’s roads.

“It’s vital that the driving test keeps up to date with new vehicle technology and the areas where new drivers face the greatest risk once they’ve passed their test.”



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