Restrictions that apply while on your P's

Written by Neil Bedford

Provisional licence restrictions ??

Certain restrictions apply when you drive using a P1 or P2 licence. These restrictions also apply if you are driving on a probationary P1 or P2 licence after serving a suspension.

Peer passenger restriction

If you hold a P1 licence, are under 25, and you are driving between 11pm and 5am you can only carry 1 passenger under the age of 21 who is not an immediate family member.

An immediate family member includes a:

  • brother or sister of the driver
  • stepbrother or stepsister of the driver
  • child, stepchild, foster child or ward of the driver
  • spouse (including de facto partner) of the driver
  • stepparent of the driver
  • guardian of the driver
  • approved carer of the driver (if the driver is a child)
  • child, stepchild, foster child or ward of an approved carer of the driver (if the driver is a child)
  • foster child or ward of a parent or stepparent of the driver
  • child, stepchild, foster child or ward of a guardian of the driver
  • spouse (including de facto partner) of a grandparent of the driver.

Mobile phone restrictions ??

Using a mobile phone held in your hand while driving is illegal. If you need to use your mobile phone, pull over and park in a safe place first.

P1 licence holders are not allowed to use:

  • hands-free kits
  • wireless handsets
  • loudspeaker functions.

These restrictions don’t apply to P2 licence holders but they can only use a hand-held mobile phone if they have pulled over and parked in a safe place.

This table explains the mobile phone restrictions for P1 licence holders.

Licence type and age Hands-free Wireless headsets Mobile phone on speaker setting
P1 licence holder under 25 Not allowed Not allowed Not allowed
P1 probationary licence holder Not allowed Not allowed Not allowed
Passengers of a P1 licence holder who is under 25 Allowed Allowed Not allowed
Passengers of a P1 probationary licence holder Allowed Allowed Not allowed

If you are a P1 licence holder and a passenger is on a call, they cannot use loudspeaker as this may distract you while you are driving.

Penalties for using mobile phones illegally

Using a mobile phone held in your hands while driving is illegal—this includes when you are stopped at traffic lights and includes making and receiving calls or texting.

You can get a $1000 fine and have 4 demerit points recorded against your traffic history.

Double demerit points apply for second or subsequent mobile phone offences committed by drivers within 1 year of an earlier offence.

High-powered vehicle restrictions ?? ..... ??

High-powered (performance) vehicle restrictions apply to P1 and P2 licence holders under the age of 25.

These restrictions also apply if you are returning from a disqualification to a P1 or P2 probationary licence, and you were under 25 at the time of the offence. These restrictions apply for the duration of the probationary period regardless of your age.

If you are caught driving a high-powered vehicle and you do not hold an exemption, you will receive a fine and demerit points.

Check if your high-powered vehicle has been approved for driving by P1 or P2 licence holders.

Definition of high-powered vehicles

Cars manufactured on or after 1 January 2010

A car manufactured on or after this date is a high-powered vehicle if it has:

The power-to-weight ratio is calculated by dividing the car’s maximum engine power in kilowatts (kW) by the tare mass and multiplying the result by 1,000.

For example, the power-to-weight ratio of a car that has a maximum engine power of 195kW and a tare mass of 1,667kg would be calculated as:

  • (195 ÷ 1667) x 1,000 = 117kW/t.

Cars manufactured before 1 January 2010

A car manufactured before 1 January 2010 is a high-powered vehicle if it has:

The following vehicles are exempt and can be driven on a P1 or P2 licence:

  • Suzuki Cappuccino 2D Cabriolet Turbo 3 657–698cc (1992–1997)
  • Daihatsu Copen L880 2D Convertible Turbo 4 659cc (2003 or later)
  • Smart Fortwo Coupe 2D Turbo 3 698cc (2000 or later)
  • Smart Fortwo Cabriolet Turbo 3 2D 698cc (2000 or later)
  • Smart Roadster Turbo 3 2D 698cc (2000 or later)
  • Toyota Landcruiser.
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