Apr 122018
 

Warranty Direct examines DVSA data revealing findings linked to UK driving test changes

April, 2018 – A leading car warranty provider, Warranty Direct, has analysed over 10 years’ worth of test data from the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA), to reveal the most common reasons people fail their driving tests, with some interesting results:

# The top 5 reasons for test candidates failing driving tests 2006-2017
1 Observation at junctions
2 Use of mirrors (when changing direction)
3 Reverse park/left reverse
4 Control (steering)
5 Junctions (turning right)

It’s interesting to see reverse manoeuvres were two of the most common reasons people failed their tests, as the ‘reverse around a corner’ and ‘turn-in-the road’ are no longer being examined in the practical driving test.

While the DVSA states you should still be taught these in lessons, some instructors have warned replacing them with more real-life scenarios, such as driving into and reversing out of a parking bay, will make it easier for learners to pass and won’t teach them ‘real-life dangers’.

This reasoning may not be as far-fetched as it sounds. 2017 had the highest pass rate out of 11 years’ worth of DVSA data. The UK pass rate is currently at 47 percent and has risen by 4 percent since 2006, when the national pass rate was only 43 percent.

The number of tests passed with 0 faults has also gone up massively in the last year. Back in 2006, this figure was only at 3,329. However, the DVSA results from 2016/2017 show this has gone up over 400 percent, with 17,950 people passing tests with 0 faults.

However, professionals in the industry have defended the new test changes saying it now reflects real life driving and people who pass it will have more confidence when driving solo.

While the DVSA has listed five driving tasks learners clearly struggle with, there were also a number which they completed with more success.

The majority of candidates seemed to fair well when being tested on how they responded to signals and road markings and had general, good road positioning, when assessed under test conditions.

Simon Ackers, Warranty Direct’s Chief Executive Officer commented on the results:

“Looking over the last ten years’ worth of DVSA driving test data has been particularly insightful and it’s surprising to see some of the biggest reasons for failing are for less complex driving tasks. It will be interesting to discover the 2018/2019 pass rate and what impact the new changes have on future test results.”


Warranty Direct is a trading style of BNP Paribas Cardif Limited. BNP Paribas Cardif Limited is a company, registered in England and Wales No. 3233010 at Pinnacle House, A1 Barnet Way, Borehamwood, Herts, WD6 2XX and is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, Register No.309075.

Mar 192018
 

Recent reports have shown although roads are busier than ever before, casualties are at the lowest level on record. The exact reasons for these statistics are not quite known, but the fact vehicles themselves are becoming safer due technology advancements could be a contributing factor.

For example; manufacturers are developing car systems which not only mitigate the effects of a collision, but can prevent the chances of having one altogether. Volvo has even promised no one should be killed or seriously injured in one of its new cars by 2020.

With 79 percent of consumers describing car safety as very important, Warranty Direct has put together a guide to the modern safety features keeping us safer on the roads…

Anti-lock Braking System (ABS)

ABS has become a standard in most cars. It helps prevent car wheels from locking up, so reducing the likelihood of skidding. One of the most dangerous aspects of wheel lock is the loss of steering control, but ABS ensures drivers will be able to steer after an episode of hard braking.

Blind spot monitoring

Blind spot monitoring systems help drivers be more aware of what’s in the adjacent lane to their vehicle. Using a radar system to scan the space around your car, it will use a bright LED light in your side view mirror to visually alert you if another vehicle is in your blind spot.

Airbags

Since 1987, frontal air bags have saved 44,869 lives. Sensors in the car monitor deceleration rates, then fire the airbags to cushion impact. Modern developments include dual-stage airbags which have sensors to generate different responses depending on the seriousness of a collision. These advances reduce the chances of airbag-related injuries.

Seatbelts

Apart from brakes, seatbelts are the oldest safety feature around. According to ROSPA,  tens of thousands of lives are estimated to have been saved in the UK since making the law for wearing seat belts mandatory.

While the overall design hasn’t changed, it continues to evolve. Ford has developed rear inflatable seatbelts for some of its models and in the event of an impact, this innovative technology is designed to minimise the likelihood of injuries.

Dash cams

Dash cams are onboard cameras that continuously record the view of your journey through a vehicle’s windscreen. They can be used to provide video evidence in the event of a road accident. During parking, some dashcams still can capture video evidence if vandalism is detected too.

They have become increasingly popular with motorists in the UK, with dash cam ownership increasing from one to 15 percent in just four years.

Bluetooth devices

Using a hand-held mobile phone or sat nav while driving is illegal and you are four times more likely to be in a collision if you use your phone when driving.

Many cars now come with Bluetooth hands-free calling connectivity to help combat such issues. Once you connect your phone to your car system, Bluetooth allows completely wireless access to calling functions from your phone through your vehicle, via the dash, a control screen, steering-wheel buttons, or voice commands.

It increases car safety as you’ll keep both hands on the wheel and won’t need to look down to dial numbers, hold a handset to your ear, or do things like changing the volume to music.

Child car seats

The law requires all children travelling in any vehicle to use a child car seat until they are either 135cm in height or 12 years old, whichever comes first. With plenty of options to choose from, always speak to an expert to help you decide which are best for your needs and to assist you in correctly fitting the seat to your car.

Most modern family cars now have Isofix connectors built into them, making it easier for fitting baby and child car seats.

Electronic Stability Control (ESC)

ECS helps drivers avoid loss of control in bends and during emergency steering manoeuvres by reducing the danger of skidding. This has become such an important development in terms of road safety, manufacturers are now required by law to install ESC in all new vehicles.

Warranty Direct is a trading style of BNP Paribas Cardif Limited. BNP Paribas Cardif Limited is a company, registered in England and Wales No. 3233010 at Pinnacle House, A1 Barnet Way, Borehamwood, Herts, WD6 2XX and is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, Register No.309075.

Mar 192018
 

Did you know negotiating on the price of a new car could save you as much as 13 percent?

Prices of new cars may seem fixed, but if you’d like to save yourself a little cash, think of them as a starting point instead.

There is the potential for huge savings, if you know the right questions to ask and the best places look.

To help you secure the best possible price for your new vehicle, Warranty Direct has put together its top tips to help you negotiate like a pro.

Do your homework

Research your car shortlist and make a note of exactly what you need to support you in your day-to-day life. Having an exact specification in mind will prevent you from being swayed into looking at other models and knowing the manufacturer’s recommended price puts you in a strong position to negotiate.

If you’ve set your heart on a specific model, be wary of special offers on a lower-specification car. An alternative model is often more beneficial to the dealer than to you. Unless the deal is obviously worthwhile and meets the needs you originally listed, stick to your guns. Ultimately, you’re the one who knows which features will best suit your lifestyle.

You can check your options using our Reliability Index, which calculates individual car models’ reliability considering the following factors:

  • the number of times a car fails
  • the cost of repairing it
  • the average amount of time it spends off the road due to repairs
  • the average age and mileage of the vehicles we have on our books

This ‘real world’ picture of particular models could help make your decision an easy one.

Shop around

Different dealerships will have different targets, margins and prices, so shop around to see where the best deals are. You can use your research as a bartering tool. If one dealership gives you a quote, take it to another to see if they can beat it.

Online sites such as Car Wow and UK Car Discount have changed the way we buy cars and could help you save thousands. You can compare costs of new cars from a range of sources in the comfort of your own home to find the best deal. It may mean travelling a bit further for your vehicle, but the savings may be worth the journey.

Think about the time of year

You might get between 10 to 12 percent off the ‘list price’ of a new car, just by buying at the right time of the year. Car salespeople have targets to hit, so look out for deals and ask for greater discounts during quieter times of the year. This is usually in December, at the end of the month or financial quarter.

One of a dealer’s biggest annual events are the registration plate changes. Showrooms offer big discounts on cars with old plates as they need to shift them before sales slow, which is often before 1st March and 1st September.

Prioritise perks

High sales at larger dealerships may mean they’re able to offer better deals. Keep an eye out for finance with 0 percent interest, discounted models and free extra equipment.

Dealerships are often incentivised to sell cars on finance as they can make more money from the sale. This means if you are thinking about a finance deal, you may be in a good position to negotiate a few more extras. However, be cautious. Keep a close eye on the APR, or interest rate, as some deals are better than others.

Warranty Direct is a trading style of BNP Paribas Cardif Limited. BNP Paribas Cardif Limited is a company, registered in England and Wales No. 3233010 at Pinnacle House, A1 Barnet Way, Borehamwood, Herts, WD6 2XX and is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, Register No.309075.