Birmingham is the hardest place to pass your driving test first time

Birmingham is the UK’s hardest place to pass your driving test on the first attempt, according to research. The city has an average first-time pass rate of 36.6% – the lowest in the country.

Research by learner insurance specialists ingenie found each of Birmingham’s three test centres have the lowest pass rate, with Sutton Coldfield seeing a first-time pass rate of 36.5%, while Kingstanding and South Yardley both had 36.7%. It’s also a tough challenge to pass your test first time in Goodmayes, London, with a rate of 37.1% – joint with Wolverhampton – followed by Bury St Edmunds (38.1%).

In contrast, Dorchester in Dorset is the easiest place to pass first time with a rate of 67.3% – nearly double the amount of those passed in Birmingham.

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Ingenie, which offers new drivers a black box to assess their driving and gives discounts for careful motorists, examined data from major driving test centres in the UK, which have conducted at least 1,000 tests since April 2020, to determine those with the lowest first-attempt pass rates.

A spokesperson said: “A driving test is a monumental occasion in someone’s life, and the disparity shown in driving test pass rates for first attempts is fascinating. Someone is nearly twice as likely to pass their driving test on their first attempt in Dorchester than in Birmingham.

“Despite there being many factors that make up a driving test and its success, this analysis highlights the clear data demonstrating that some areas have a higher first attempt pass rate than others.”

Test centre and average percent pass rate for the top 10 in the UK

Birmingham (Sutton Coldfield)


Birmingham (Kingstanding)


Birmingham (South Yardley)


Goodmayes (London)




Bury St. Edmunds


Speke (Liverpool)


Wanstead (London)




Chingford (London)




Mill Hill (London)


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