Automatic driving licenses – Too early or too late?

Some time last month, Datuk Abdul Rahim Bakri, the deputy minister of Transport made the announcement that the government is in the plan to introduce driving license tests for automatic transmission cars. Currently, in order to obtain a driving license, one must go through the mandatory classes and tests which are conducted only for manual gears. That means, if you cannot drive a manual transmission car, then you cannot get a license, no matter how much an expert you are driving an automatic car. The move, which is expected to be finalized and implemented probably by the end of 2009 is welcomed by many quarters, after all more and more people are opting for automatic transmission cars especially if you are one who keep getting stuck in traffic jams. Unless you are driving a sports or a performance car, most people do not appreciate the stepping on the clutch too much. That would be part of another license altogether.

The thing about automatic car licenses is that, this is not something new. Countries like Singapore and Australia have been practicing this for a while now. Should the policy comes under effect; there will be some changes in the courses which one has to take to get their licenses. As it is with the current system, all the cars used in the courses for training and testing uses manual transmission.

As a matter of fact, the entire process of obtaining your driving license in fact has to be altered. This is because as more people would be opting to get the automatic transmission licenses, there must be a provision of upgrades as well. In addition to that, it could be also for a person to obtain a 2 in 1 license which allows you to drive both auto and manual cars. Where this is concerned, you have to also ensure that you should at least know how to use the manual gears when required.

The move by the government is one that seemed to be positive but one has to look at the setback as this might cause too many cars on the road again, but of course this cannot be the sole reason people are buying cars as well. Apparently, such move will encourage more drivers instead of commuters of public transport. The most important thing to address perhaps is by looking at the service of public transportation in the country and its cities. The upgrades and such should all be enhanced and then perhaps, having a driving license, regardless of whether it is auto or manual would not bear so much significance.