What is the B+E car and trailer test? Do i need a trailer training course?
What is the B+E car and trailer test?
B+E Test is the Driver and Vehicles Standards Agency (DVSA) practical driving test for car and trailer. No medical examination or additional theory test is required. The test is regarded by the DVSA as the first step to pulling large trailers. The duration of the test is approx 90 mins.
The driving test takes the candidate through a number of different exercises including a reversing exercise, coupling and uncoupling the trailer.
In addition to the trailer manoeuvring exercises the candidate must show the examiner skill and competency on the highway including junctions, roundabouts, lane control, mirror routines, hill starts and angled starts, etc. During the test you will be asked a number of preset questions called ‘show me, tell me’ which must be answered either verbally or practically demonstrated.
What can you tow on passing the B+E test?
Successfully passing this test allows a driver to tow a trailer up to a gross weight (trailer plus load) of 3,500kgs (3.5 tonnes). This means a vehicle and trailer with a gross train weight of 7,000kgs (7 tonnes
Did you know that it is illegal to TOW a Trailer without the proper Driving Licence?
The possible Penalties for Towing Without a Valid Licence are:
9 Penalty Points (3 points for the missing licence entitlement and 6 points for no insurance owing to the fact that you are driving without the correct licence) and up to a maximum fine of £5000.
Category B: Vehicles up to 3.5 tonnes MAM (Maximum Authorised Mass) and with up to eight passenger seats. Category B vehicles may be coupled with a trailer up to 750kgs MAM (allowing a combined weight up to 4.25 tonnes MAM) or a trailer over 750kgs MAM provided the MAM of the trailer does not exceed the unladen weight of the towing vehicle, and the combination does not exceed 3.5 tonnes MAM.
For example: A vehicle with an unladen weight of 1.25 tonnes and a MAM of 2 tonnes coupled with a trailer with a MAM of 1.25 tonnes could be driven by the holder of a category B entitlement. This is because the MAM of the combination does not exceed 3.5 tonnes and also the MAM of the trailer does not exceed the unladen weight of the drawing vehicle.
Whereas: The same vehicle with an unladen weight of 1.25 tonnes and a MAM of 2 tonnes when coupled with a trailer with a MAM of 1.5 tonnes would fall within category B+E. This is because although the combined weight of the vehicle and trailer is within the 3.5 tonnes MAM limit, the MAM of the trailer is more than the unladen weight of the drawing vehicle. Vehicle manufacturers normally recommend a maximum weight of trailer appropriate to their vehicle.
Details can usually be found in the vehicle’s handbook or obtained from car dealerships. The size of the trailer recommended for an average family car with an unladen weight of around 1 tonne would be well within the new category B threshold.
As for towing caravans, existing general guidance recommends that the laden weight of the caravan does not exceed 85% of the unladen weight of the car. In the majority of cases, caravans and small trailers towed by cars should be within the new category B threshold. An exemption from the driver licensing trailer limit allows a category B licence holder to tow a broken down vehicle from a position where it would otherwise cause danger or obstruction to other road users. By passing a category B test national categories F (tractor), K (pedestrian controlled vehicle) and P (moped) continue to be added automatically.
CATEGORY B+E: VEHICLES UP TO 3.5 TONNES MAM TOWING TRAILERS OVER 750KGS MAM
Category B+E allows vehicles up to 3.5 tonnes MAM to be combined with trailers in excess of 750kgs MAM. In order to gain this entitlement new category B licence holders have to pass a further practical test for category B+E. There is no category B+E theory test.