You can take your driving test in your own car rather than your driving instructor’s if it meets certain rules.
Your test will be cancelled and you’ll have to pay again if your car does not meet the rules.
Rules about the car
Your car must:
- be taxed
- be insured for a driving test (check with your insurance company)
- be roadworthy and have a current MOT (if it’s over 3 years old)
- have no warning lights showing, for example, the airbag warning light
- have no tyre damage and the legal tread depth on each tyre – you cannot have a space-saver spare tyre fitted
- be smoke-free – this means you cannot smoke in it just before or during the test
- be able to reach at least 62mph and have an mph speedometer
- have 4 wheels and a maximum authorised mass (MAM) of no more than 3,500 kg
The MAM is the limit on how much the car can weigh when it’s loaded. It’ll be in the car’s handbook.
Cleaning your car
You should tidy your car before your test. This includes removing any rubbish or unnecessary items from the dashboard, footwells, door pockets, cup holders and seats.
Things that must be fitted
The car must have:
- an extra interior rear-view mirror for the examiner
- L-plates (‘L’ or ‘D’ plates in Wales) on the front and rear
- a passenger seatbelt for the examiner and a proper passenger head restraint (not a slip-on type)
Dashcams and other cameras
You can use a camera fitted for insurance purposes, as long as it:
- faces outside of the car and does not film the inside
- does not record audio from inside the car
You can use a car with:
- an electronic parking brake
- hill-start assist
Manual and automatic cars
You can take the test in a:
- manual car – these have 3 pedals
- automatic or semi-automatic car – these have 2 pedals
If you take your test in a semi-automatic car you’ll only be able to drive automatic and semi-automatic cars once you’ve passed your test.
You can take your test in a hire car if it’s fitted with dual controls and meets all the other rules.
Cars you cannot use
Some cars cannot be used in the test because they do not give the examiner all-round vision.
You cannot use any of the following:
- BMW Mini convertible
- Ford KA convertible
- Smart Fortwo (2-door)
- Toyota iQ
- VW Beetle convertible
There might be other cars that you cannot use. This is because not every model has been used in a test before, and some may not give the examiner all-round vision.
Check if your car can be used before booking a test
You can check if your car can be used by contacting the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA).
Always check if you want to use a:
- convertible car
- panel van
- coupe (a car with a fixed roof, two doors and a sloping rear)
Cars with known safety faults
You cannot use one of the cars shown in the table unless you have proof that it’s safe. This is because these cars have been recalled for a safety reason.
You must bring the proof that it’s safe with you when you take your test.
|Reason for recall||Vehicles affected||Recall issue date|
|Citroen C1||Steering failure||Vehicles built between 9 Sep 2014 and 15 Oct 2014, with vehicle identification numbers (VINs) between wF7xxxxxxER516105 and VF7xxxxxxER523367||28 Jun 2016|
|Peugeot 108||Steering failure||Vehicles built between 9 Jun 2014 and 15 Oct 2014, with VINs between VF3xxxxxxER256527 and F3xxxxxxER017078||28 Jun 2016|
|Toyota Aygo||Steering failure||Vehicles built between 9 Jun 2014 and 15 Oct 2014, with VINs between JTDJGNEC#0N022080 and 0N026438, JTDJPNEC#0N002099 and 0N002100, JTDKGNEC#0N022186 and 0N031372, and JTDKPNEC#0N002083 and 0N002102||28 Jun 2016|
|Toyota Yaris||Potentially defective seat rail track and/or steering column mounting||Some models built between Jun 2005 and May 2010 (‘05’ to ‘10’ registration plates)||9 Apr 2014|
|Vauxhall ADAM||Potential steering problem||VINs with last 8 digits between E6077301 to E6113446, and F6000001 to F6006544||29 Sep 2014|
|Vauxhall Corsa D||Potential steering problem||VINs with last 8 digits between E6071016 and E6118738, and E4181031 and E4308122||29 Sep 2014|
Proof you need to bring to your test
You must bring proof that says one of the following:
- the car was recalled and the recall work has been done
- the car was recalled but did not need any work to be done
- the car was not part of the recall
The proof must be either:
- the recall letter or safety notice, stamped by the manufacturer or dealer
- on official or headed notepaper from the manufacturer or a dealer
Your test will be cancelled and you could lose your fee if you do not bring the right proof.