LAWS - CA Laws - Registration & Licence !!!



I was under the assumption, from my reads here, that thus far no license or registration was necessary.

I tried to sell my first bike and was informed that was not true:

From page 6 of the 2007 DMV Handbook -
please note difference in sec. (a) & sec. (b)
(b) is for electric bikes

A motor-driven cycle is:
- A motorcycle with a 149 cc or
less engine size.
NOTE: You may not operate a
motor-driven cycle on a freeway if
signs are posted to prohibit motordriven
cycle operation.
There are two definitions of
motorized bicycle (moped). A
motorized bicycle is:
- A two- or three-wheeled device,
capable of no more than 30 mph
on level ground, and equipped
- fully operative pedals for
human propulsion.
- an internal combustion
engine producing less than
two gross brake horsepower
and an automatic
- an electric motor, with or
without pedals for human
(VC Sec.406[a])
- A vehicle with pedals and an
electric motor (not more than
1,000 watts) which cannot be
driven at speeds of more than
20 mph on level ground even
if assisted by human power.
The motor must stop when
the brakes are applied or the
starter switch is released. (VC

If you operate a motorized bicycle
which meets the defi nition of

VC Sec.406, you:
- Must be 16 years of age or
- Must wear a properly fi tted and
fastened bicycle helmet.
- Are exempt from the motor
vehicle fi nancial responsibility,
driver license, and moped plate
requirements. (VC Sec.12804.9)
You may ride a moped in a bicycle
lane at a reasonable speed. Be
careful of bicyclists using the
A motorized scooter is defi ned as
any two-wheeled "device" with:
- A motor, handlebars, and a
floorboard for standing on when
riding, and
- The options of having:
- a driver seat which cannot
interfere with the operator's
ability to stand and ride.
- the ability to be powered by
human propulsion.
The motorized scooter's exhaust
system must not be modifi ed or


Also, there is a Motorized Bicycle Application (Reg. 230) from the DMV. I think that it is $18, perhaps.



An M2 or M1 license is required.
Motorized Bicycle Application Reg230 $18 as of April 19, 2007.
Liability Insurance
Motorcycle Helmet
Brake light
Side and rear reflectors
"Adequate" muffler (whatever that means)
Working brakes
One mirror(prob. left side)
Note - Turn signals are not required under the law.


All Valid comments welcome.

Please no "he said - she said" opinions.
Real legal precedents please.

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Frist you are selling a bicycle so you dont go thought DMV the motor is NOT in questin its an after thought or an add on it started life as a bike frist all that is needed for Cali is a resalers licence this is fact so dont try to turn it into a shoting match, just understand that you were misinfourmed by someone that has not had to fight it in court.....Loco
Cops in CA

If you're not out there acting like an idiot, the police will leave you alone. The laws are so confusing that most cops don't keep up with the changes in motorized bicycle laws. They have much more important things to do.

Keep it below 30 mph on busy streets.

Wear a freakin helmet.

Get a 17 dollar moped plate.

You won't have a problem......... I asked a Pacific Beach motorcycle cop about this (they are notorious for ticketing kids) --He pointed to Zena and said It's just a BICYCLE!
The thing you need to detirmine here is if the state's definition of a "motorized bicycle" covers a bicycle that you put a motor on yourself, or if it only covers bicycles that were originally manufactured and sold with motors attached.

That seems like a minor distinction, but it's not.

Years ago many motorized bicycles were built and sold that were street-legal, and state motor vehicle laws tend to include methods for grandfathering every type of motor vehicle that was legal in the past--but it doesn't mean the state includes bicycles you put motors on now.
I spent 3 hours at DMV, talked to 5 folks and got no st8 answer on "Motor assisted bicycles" here in CT. I looked it up in the statutes (14-286) and found the answers. Completely street legal and to sell one, I need a dealer's licence if I produce or sell multiple units. Go to your states DMV web page, do your home work. Case and point, NY state right next door all but forbids "motor assisted bicycles" but you can add lights and more CC's and is a legal moped that you can register. Really is a case of doing one's home work.
anyone posting here is doing their homework.

speaking of "how forums work" to start a new topic to discuss CT law...this is a CA topic...

moshe-pit-discussions only make matters more vague for a new rider trying to get info about their specific state.