Driving Test Changes

27 Nov 2017

Monday 4th December sees some big changes to the UK driving test. The aim is to modernise the test, to better reflect the skills needed to safely navigate our roads and ensure new drivers are fully prepared to get behind the wheel unaccompanied.

Independent Driving

Previously, this part of the test was only around 10 minutes. This will be increased to 20 minutes of driving without turn-by-turn directions from the examiner, which is around half of the test period. As most serious and fatal collisions take place on high speed roads, the new format will allow time to include them in test routes.

Sat Nav Use

As part of the independent driving section, candidates will be required to follow directions from a sat nav, provided and programmed by the examiner. The candidate will be able to confirm the destination, and marks won’t be deducted for taking a wrong turn as long as no faults occur.

Reversing Manoeuvres

While they should still be taught by an instructor, the “reverse around a corner” and “turn in the road” manoeuvres will no longer be part of the test. Candidates will be asked to perform one of three reversing manoeuvres:

  • Parallel park at the side of the road
  • Park in a bay (either reverse in and drive out, or drive in and reverse out)
  • Pull up on the right, reverse for 2 car lengths and rejoin traffic.

Vehicle Safety Questions

The examiner will ask two “show me, tell me” questions. The “tell me” question will take place before starting to drive. The “show me” question will take the form of operating normal controls while driving, such as windscreen wipers or headlights.

If you’re looking for a driving instructor, choosing a first car, or would like advice on learning to drive, visit our pages for learner drivers.We also offer support for new drivers, including our free Up To Speed programme for motorway driving skills.


More Road Safety News:


Did You Know?

Somerset Road Safety also provides support and training for businesses employing fleets of drivers.

Read More

Did You Know?

An endorsement for drink driving remains on your licence for 11 years?

Read More

Resources & Downloads

Somerset Road Safety documents available for download.

Read More

Upcoming Events

View upcoming events and courses recommeneded by Somerset Road Safety.

Read More

Other Resources

Somerset Road Safety aims to reduce collisions and casualties on local roads.

Read More