There will be a number of new driving laws coming into force in 2018. Road laws and rules are changing over the coming 12 months and could become more complicated for drivers across the UK.

Here we tell you the new rules that are set to be announced over the course of 2018:

Changes tocar tax for diesel cars 

New car tax changes are coming into force from April 2018 for diesel cars. Phillip Hammond announced these changes in the Autumn Budget last year. Focusing on reducing air pollution, these changes are targeted solely at diesel cars. From April 2018, if cars do not meet a pre-determined emissions standard then drivers could face inflated fees.

Fortunately, the inflated charges will not be applied to existing cars on the road, but those buying a new car will need to be aware of the cars that will be hit the hardest. This could add up to £500 on to the cost of your car tax.

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New MOT rules

There will be a shake-up on the MOT test from May 2018! This will see the introduction of new failure and defect categories. The new test will categorise defects as Minor, Major or Dangerous! Under the new rules, a Major or Dangerous fault will mean an automatic failure of your MOT test. Minor faults could still mean a pass but will be noted down on the car’s MOT certificate.

For diesel cars, the limits will be lowered making it harder to pass.

Other changes include checks as to whether brake discs are obviously worn, oil contamination of the discs and how well they are securely attached to the wheel hubs. Another change is that if the “exhaust on a vehicle fitted with a diesel particulate filter emits visible smoke of any colour” the car will be issued with a Major fault.

And from May 2018, any car that is more than 40 years old will no longer need an MOT certificate.

Red X 

A Red X above any motorway lane refers to a lane closure.  This could be due to an accident further down the road.  If there is a Red X above any lane on a motorway, you should not drive in that lane and motorists could soon be penalised for doing so in the UK.

Roadside cameras could soon be introduced, which would automatically detect drivers using the Red X lane and issue a fixed penalty notice of £100 and three penalty points.

Learner drivers motorway 

Under the current system, only learner drivers who opt for an advanced motorway course such as Pass Plus will be trained to drive on a motorway. However, from this year, learner drivers could be allowed to have lessons to teach them how to safely drive using the motorway network.

Graduated driving licence

A graduated driving licence could be introduced in the UK for those ages under 25. Under the current proposal, drivers under 25 would be restricted from driving at night and carrying passengers under the age of 25, unless supervised. A probationary period of two years has been proposed for this from when they pass their practical test.

Similar restrictions have been implemented in Australia, New Zealand, and the US.

There are also suggestions of putting a limit on the engine size and power output to also help prevent accidents.

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