More than half want driving age raised to 18

Driving test age

A new survey indicates that 53 percent want the minimum driving age raised from 17 to 18. That compares with just five percent who want it lowered to 16.

Meanwhile, 42 percent said the legal driving age should stay as it is. 

The survey of 2,000 British people by Veygo made up part of the Learner Drivers Report. It also found that learners between 16 and 25 usually pass on their third attempt. For older age groups from 26 upwards, most past pass first-time.

Should drivers be re-tested?

Driving test age

Another point of contention was whether drivers should retake the test later in their driving career. Overall, a retake was favoured, with 47 percent saying there shouldn’t be retests.

One in five said drivers should be re-tested every 10 years, while the same percentage favoured every 20 years. Perhaps surprisingly, just 15 percent said a retest should take place when drivers reach retirement age.

The 16-24 age group has by far the fewest qualified drivers, at less than 2.8 million. Compare that to 45-54 and 65-plus, both with more than eight million. 

Is it getting tougher to pass the test?

Driving test age

Popular opinion says that the driving test is getting more difficult. Indeed, recent years have seen the introduction of new areas of examination.

Pass rates, however, have stayed more or less the same. From a low pass rate of 44 percent in 2007-2008, it has fluctuated in recent years, going from 47 percent in 2016-17, through 46 percent in 2017-18, to 45 percent in 2018-19.

Compare that to the number of passes with zero faults, which has increased markedly since 2007-2008. A lowly 0.19 percent rose to 1.04 percent in 2016-2017, although there aren’t figures for the recent (and ‘more difficult’) years.