National speed limits for vans
When driving a van, be aware that the national speed limits are different from those for cars, depending on the road you are on. Lower speed limits will apply in built up areas and on many local roads. These lower limits are the same for both cars and vans.
The different speed limits for vans and cars
Cars may be driven at up to 60 miles per hour (mph)on single carriageways and up to 70 mph on dual carriageways. Vans may be driven at up to 50 mph on single carriageways and up to 60 mph on dual carriageways. A dual carriageway is a road that has a central reservation separating the carriageways.
Driving on a motorway
If you are driving a van on a motorway the speed limit is 70 mph, like cars, unless you are towing a trailer. If you are towing a trailer the motorway speed limit is 60 mph.
Any vehicle towing a trailer is not allowed to use the outside lane where there are three or more lanes in use in the same direction.
These long-standing national speed limits for vans are the same for all goods vehicles that have a maximum authorised mass (MAM) of no more than 7,500 kilograms (kg).
- Vehicle weights explained
Locally set speed limits
There are many stretches of road where there are lower, locally set, speed limits in place. It is vital to keep within local speed limits and also to reduce your vehicle speed according to the weather, road and traffic conditions during your journey.
Comparative speed limits in mph
Dual carriageway roads
* 60 if towing a trailer
Vans that can travel at the same speed as cars
There is a small group of vans that can travel at up to the same national speed limits as cars. These are car-derived vans that are goods vehicles developed from a passenger vehicle and have a MAM of no more than 2,000 kg.
Examples of car-derived vans are vehicles built by the manufacturer and based on the Ford Fiesta, Vauxhall Astra, Fiat Punto, Peugeot 207 and Renault Clio.
Speed limits and tax classes
A common mistake thats made is to suppose that if a van is in the same tax or registration class as a car then the speed limits are the same. This is not the case since vehicle registration and vehicle speed limits are governed by separate legislation.
More useful links
- The Highway Code
- Medical rules for all drivers
- The vehicles you can drive or ride and minimum ages
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