Rules for cars used for driving tests

Rules for cars used for driving tests

You can take use your own car for the driving test it meets certain rules.

Your test will be cancelled and you could lose your fee if your car doesn’t meet the rules.

Your vehicle must:

  • be properly insured and have a valid tax disc
  • be roadworthy and have a current MOT if it needs one
  • have a seatbelt for the examiner
  • have an interior rear-view mirror for the examiner (these are available from most motor stores)
  • have a proper passenger head restraint (not a slip-on type)
  • be a smoke-free environment
  • have 4 wheels
  • be able to reach at least 62mph
  • have a speedometer measuring speed in mph
  • have no warning lights showing – for example, the airbag warning light
  • have L-plates (‘L’ or ‘D’ plates in Wales) on the front and rear
  • have a maximum authorised mass (MAM) of no more than 3,500 kilograms

MAM is the maximum weight of the vehicle including the maximum load that can be carried safely while used on the road. This is also known as ‘gross vehicle weight’.

Using a hire car

You can only use a hire car for your test if it is fitted with dual controls and it meets all the other driving test vehicle rules.

Space-saver tyres

In some cars the spare tyre is a space-saver and only supposed to be for temporary use. You can’t take your test if a space-saver tyre is in use.

Electronic parking brakes

You can use your vehicle for your test if it is fitted with an electronic parking brake.

Vehicles you can’t use

Some models of vehicle can’t be used for the test. This is because they don’t give the examiner all-round vision. They are generally convertible cars and panel vans.

You can’t use these cars for a driving test:

  • BMW Mini convertible
  • Ford KA convertible
  • Toyota iQ
  • VW Beetle convertible

Other types of convertible car or panel van may also be unsuitable. Check with the Driving Standards Agency (DSA) before booking your test.

DSA practical test enquiries
Telephone: 0300 200 1122 (English), 0300 200 1133 (Welsh)
Textphone: 0300 200 1144
Monday to Friday, 8am to 4pm