Yes, as of November 15th 2021, you can now go straight from a car to a Class 1 HGV. The November 2021 changes were introduced by the Government to reduce the national HGV driver shortage.
These changes included:
- Approved training centres and accredited assessors are now able to undertake the reversing test for the 3A section of the test.
- The 3B practical driver section of the test still needs to be completed with a DVSA examiner but is now 60 minutes in duration, up 10 minutes from the previous 50 minutes it used to take.
We have added many Fast Track options to allow our students to go from a car straight to a Class 1 HGV.
If you passed your car driving test before 1st January 1997, you automatically have “acquired rights” to categories C1, D1, and B+E entitlements. This means you can drive goods vehicles up to 7.5 tonnes, towing a trailer up to 750kg, a minibus up to 16 seats towing a trailer, and a car towing any trailer.
If you passed your test after 1st January 1997, you are allowed to drive vehicles up to 3.5 tonnes (Ford Transit or Mercedes Sprinter sized vehicles but check the Gross Weight on the plate of the vehicle because some “Small vans” are not that small!) towing a trailer up to 750kg (but not exceeding a train weight of 3.5tonnes), a minibus up to 8 seats towing a trailer up to 750kg (not exceeding a train weight of 3.5tonnes) and a car towing a trailer up to 750kgs (again, not exceeding the 3.5 tonnes train weight).
If you do not have “acquired rights” you will need to complete some form of HGV training, depending on the category of vehicle you are planning on driving, such as CAT C or C+E.
Although, you can still complete your CAT C course before taking your C+E training. This will allow you to gain confidence and experience in driving a CAT C vehicle before making the jump to a C+E.