Driver Knowledge Tests

Maximum vehicle widths, lengths and heights

There are two categories of vehicle:

    1. General access vehicles
    2. Restricted access vehicles

General access vehicles

General access vehicles are all vehicles that do not exceed the following dimensions:

    • The maximum vehicle width is 2.5 metres
    • The maximum vehicle height is 4.3 metres
    • The maximum vehicle length is 12.5 metres if it is a single (rigid) motor vehicle
    • The maximum vehicle length is 19 metres if it is a combination motor vehicle

These vehicles can operate on any road except where there’s a restriction that is notified by a sign, e.g. a low bridge. They include most cars, vans, motorhomes and light trucks.

The maximum width is based on the bodyshell and doesn’t include:

    • rear vision mirrors, signalling devices and side-mounted lamps and reflectors
    • anti-skid devices mounted on wheels, central tyre inflation systems, tyre pressure gauges
    • permanently fixed webbing-assembly-type devices, such as curtain-side devices, provided that the maximum distance measured across the body including any part of the devices does not exceed 2.55 metres.

The maximum height doesn’t include:

    • vehicles built to carry cattle, horses, pigs or sheep on two decks – 4.6 metres
    • vehicles built with at least 2 decks for carrying vehicles – 4.6 metres
    • double-decker bus – 4.4 metres

Restricted access vehicles

Restricted access vehicles must be operated in accordance with a relevant notice or permit.

    • vehicles designed to carry livestock can be up to 4.6m high
    • vehicles designed to carry motor vehicles on more than one deck may be up to 4.6m high
    • double-deck buses can be up to 4.4m high.

Heavy vehicle lengths are:

    • combination other than a B-double, road train or a car carrier: 19 metres
    • B-double: 25 metres
    • road train: 53.5 metres
    • car carrier: 25 metres
    • articulated bus: 18 metres
    • bus other than an articulated bus: 14.5 metres
    • another vehicle: 12.5 metres

Darren is an expert on driving and transport, and is a member of the Institute of Advanced Motorists

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