Show/hide navigation

Failed your practical driving test? That could be a sign of intelligence

Failing your driving test may seem like a stupid thing to do, but new research suggests that it could actually be a sign you are clever.

Analysis of 1,564 people with a full UK driving licence revealed that 59 per cent of those with no qualifications passed first time, compared with a 51 per cent pass rate for those with A-levels.

In terms of the average number of tests needed before passing, those with no qualifications took an average of 1.7 attempts, compared with 1.8 attempts for those with GCSEs.

The first-time pass rate at a post-graduate degree level was 47 per cent, while undergraduates managed a 48 per cent pass rate.

"Passing first time isn't the be-all and end-all of driving ability as many of the main skills we need to equip ourselves for our driving careers are learned over the years as our experience on the road builds," said head of Privilege DrixeXpert Charlotte Fielding, the company behind the research.

"This research demonstrates a link with academic and professional success and passing the driving test," she added.

Brits studying art needed an average of of 1.9 practical driving tests to pass, compared with 2.3 for those doing the more academic subjects such as maths and science.

Those who own their own business, meanwhile, were more than three times more likely to take their driving test four or more times than those lower down on the professional ladder. Just 39 per cent of company owners and proprietors passed first time.

The link between IQ and passing the driving test is said to be because those with greater intelligence over-think the task at hand, whereas those with fewer qualifications tend to have a more practical, hands-on approach to the challenge.

Brits are putting off passing their test longer than ever, with the high cost of motoring one of the main reasons why. An Auto Trader and Red driving school study found that the average age was 26 in 2016.

731,925 people took their first driving test between 2015 and 2016 and more than 8,000 passed first time with zero faults. In the first three months of 2017, the pass rate for 521,420 practical tests was 48.3 per cent.

The UK government recently announced it will be making changes to the practical driving test in 2017.

You should also read

Join the conversation

Back to top ↑