An overtaking method

An overtaking method. overtakemethod

The numbers (in brackets) correspond to the numbers shown on the diagram.


Early repeated mirror checks are required to ensure that the road behind is safe and that you are not being overtaken yourself.


If the road appears to be clear ahead of the ‘target’ vehicle, close the gap to your ‘launch point’ selecting the most appropriate gear for brisk acceleration. Ensure that you position to maintain maximum forward vision. Never hold a position that is closer than a one second gap on a good, dry road.


Make a final check of all mirrors and consider a direction signal to show that you are moving out and/or a flashing headlamp signal to alert the driver ahead to your presence. Also check that the target vehicle, or other vehicles ahead, are not signa ling to turn.


Position: Move out with moderate acceleration (1). If the road is still clear increase power to drive through (2). Note that you MUST NEVER commit to the manoeuvre until you have reached this point (1) and seen that the road ahead is clear. Always be prepared to drop back.


(2) Ensuring that the ‘target’ car is clearly visible in the nearside mirror, start your gradual straight-line return to the left.


At (3) the overtaken vehicle should be clearly visible in your centre mirror and you should be pulling away to (4) opening the gap.

The red line shows how not to overtake!

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