SA Driver’s Licence codes, old vs new

It constantly frustrates me how although since 1998 (16 years ago) the official licence system has made use of a system of letters to distinguish between different licence codes, to this day, people still, on a regular basis, refer to licence codes by the old number system.

To make things easier for people who are getting confused, I’ve pulled the data from the Road Traffic Act and put it together here, first the learner’s licence, then driver’s licence info. The system has undergone several changes over the decades and the time frame that each refers to is specified at the top of each column

I’ve also added a copy of a current driver’s licence to show what the current codes refer to.

Learner’s Licence system

learner’s licence issued before 1 March 1998 New/Current Learner’s Licence What this currently entails
Code 01, 02, 03, 04 and 15 Code 1 Motorbike / trike
Code 05, 06, 07, 08 Code 2 LMV
code 10, 11, 13 and 14 Code 3 HMV or LMV

Driver’s Licence

Current [1995 – 1998] [01.06.1990 – 1995) [31.12.1985 – 01.06.1990) [01.02.1972 – 31.12.1985) [01.01.1967 – 01.02.1972) [… – 01.01.1967)
A1 Code 01 Code 01 Code 01 Code 01 Code 01 Code 01
A Code 15 Code 02
Code 15
Code 03
Code 04
Code 02
Code 03
Code 04
Code 02
Code 03
Code 04
Code 02
Code 03
Code 02
Code 03
B Code 05
Code 07
Code 05
Code 07
Code 05
Code 07
Code 05
Code 07
agricultural / industrial vehicles
EB Code 08 Code 08 Code 08 Code 08 Code 08 Code 08
EC1 Code 10 Code 10 Code 10 Code 9
EC Code 11
Code 13
Code 14
Code 11
Code 13
Code 14
Code 11
Code 13
Code 14
Code 10
Code 11
Code 10
Code 11
Code 10
SA Driver's Licence

Current SA driver’s licence codes

A code 6 licence could be given for any category licence referring to an electrically powered vehicle.
A code 12 licence could be given for any category licence referring to a vehicle that is specially adapted for use by a physically disabled person.

All info is from the Road Traffic Act, Regulations, Chapter V: Fitness of Drivers, Part ll: Learner’s and driving licences and it goes into a lot more detail than I’ve displayed here. You can click the following terms if you would like more info on the SA Driver’s licence system or the Professional Driver’s Permit.

 

Comment Note: Over the next few months I will have minimal access to the blog, as such comments are being locked until further notice.

62 thoughts on “SA Driver’s Licence codes, old vs new

  1. I once heard you could drive code A with a code EC license, I personally never believed it but please clarify.

    Also is it just me or is it actually some serious rocket science reversing a trailer perfectly into a parking?!!! Goodness me!!

    • Hi Ace, you’re right, you cannot drive any kind of motorbike with an EC. You need an additional A licence.

      Yeah, reversing a trailer takes quite a bit of practice :) good luck

        • Start paying?
          You will have to pay the standard fee to retake your learners.
          You will have to pay the standard fee to redo your drivers.

  2. HI THERE,

    Thanks for all the info.
    How does the licence card distinguish between manual transmission and automatic transmission licence?
    Is there a code on it that shows which transmission you are allowed to drive?

    Thanks

    • On the front of your card it will list a vehicle restriction. Vehicle Restriction 1, indicates that you may only drive automatic transmission vehicles.

  3. What is the difference between c1 and Ec1,do they use different types of vehicles when they go for test

  4. please help.have leaners licence for code 3 without any restriction or limitations,can i use it to test with an automatic vehicle or do i have to go back and write assesments for automatic vehicle if there is? if i can would it be possible to test with a medium automatic SUV vehicle?

    • There is no separate learners licence for manual/automatic. If you have code 3 learners, you can drive heavy or light motor vehicle

  5. I got a code B licence which is SADC from Angola, so am I allowed to ride bikes in south Africa???

  6. Is a code 10 drivers licence done in a automatic ? And if so does that mean I am still allowed to drive a light motor vehicle manual ?

    • you can do a code 10 in manual or automatic, depending what you do it in, that restriction will apply to all codes on your licence

  7. What is the total weight of a trailer can a code EC1 carry and what kind of vehicle can he drive

  8. I do not find an E6 code on the driver’s licence code list, but my driver’s licence is for code E6. Can you please indicate for what am I qualified?

    Kind regards

    Chris Benade

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