The Automobile Association will offer a free driving lesson to learner drivers in Hamilton and Tauranga in a initiative to help make roads safer.
In a three-month pilot project, a free professional driving lesson will be available to drivers who have held their learner licence for less than two months and are either AA members or the offspring of members.
After the pilot, the AA plans to gradually roll out the programme gradually throughout New Zealand.
The Government introduced a tougher driver testing regime as an element of its Safer Journeys road safety strategy last year, says AA Driving School head Nigel Clark.
"The Safer Journeys framework is designed to create a safer road system increasingly free of death and serious injury, but the flipside of a tougher driver testing regime is a higher failure rate," Mr Clark says.
"The tougher test is about reducing the deaths and injuries on our roads.
"The higher testing standards mean learner drivers need to take more time to develop their skills and build a solid foundation for safe driving."
Mr Clark says professional driver training is the best way to meet the higher driving standards set by the Government.
He says car crashes are the leading cause of death for Kiwis aged between 16 and 20 and more than a third of all fatal road crashes involve a driver between the age of 16 and 24.
The free lesson is with an AA driving instructor. The lesson will provide students with an introduction to key driving skills, how to set up a car for driving, an explanation of instruments, gauges and vehicle controls, moving off, stopping, steering, gears and intersections.
Resident in Hamilton or Tauranga.
Holding a learner licence for less than two months.
An AA member or offspring of an AA member.
To apply for a free driving lesson, phone 0800 223 199 or visit aa.co.nz/free-driving-lessons.