To stay safe and legal whilst on the road, it pays to understand the limitations that are imposed by your driving licence. If you’re out to test drive a vehicle – especially a motorhome – you need to know what class of vehicle you can drive without breaking the law.

To get started, you need to check when you passed your driving test.

driving license

Did you pass your test before 1st January 1997?

If you are old and wise enough to have passed your driving test before 1st January 1997, then you will be automatically entitled to drive a C1 class of vehicle. This allows you to legally drive anything up to 7500kg. That’s a maximum dry weight that will cover almost every type of motorhome. The only kinds you will need a separate licence for are coach-derived motorhomes.

Did you pass after 1st January 1997?

This is the standard driving licence issued to new drivers today. It allows a far narrower band of vehicles to be driven by the licence holder, and this is for safety reasons. Categories B and B1 allow you to drive a vehicle up to 3500kg and tow a trailer up to 750kg behind you. To accommodate this detail of licensing law, most motorhomes are built with a Maximum Allowable Mass (MAM) of 3500kg.

Whichever licence you hold, you’ll be able to find out what categories of vehicle you are entitled to drive. If you have the older paper licence, the categories will be listed clearly on the front of your licence. If you have the modern two part licence, you can find this listing on the back of your pink photocard.

By the time you are 70 years old

By the time you reach 70, it is mandatory that you undertake a new driving test and pass it in order to continue driving on British roads. If you do not take an additional test (at an additional cost), you will lose your entitlement to drive motorhomes between 3500-7500kg.

You can ask your GP to fill in a medical report form D4, which they will charge for. This may cost far less than taking another test to gain C1 status. You will have to take a medical exam, but if you are fit and healthy, this will be easier than taking another practical and theory test on top of a standard driving licence renewal test.

Glenns Motorhomes is a family run business with a strong reputation for sourcing and selling the best used motorhomes on the market. We supply cars, small motorhomes, large motorhomes, RVs and vans in the Chesterfield, Nottingham and Sheffield areas. If you dream of the ideal holiday machine but find the cost of new motorhomes prohibitive, come down to one of our many showrooms and find out how we can make your dream come true for a fraction of the cost. Contact us today to find out more.