legal in the united kingdom ??

Discussion in 'Laws, Legislation & Emissions' started by adam27, Aug 2, 2007.

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  1. adam27

    adam27 Guest

    hi all im new so hello and im from the uk:D . i need to no weather mb are legal in the uk or not , i recently heard that they were but before i start planning and buying bits for my project i would like to no that they are 100% legal or not as the case may be. cheers adam

  2. turbo/chaos

    turbo/chaos Guest

    well from the way things look anything seems legal in the uk man but all you can do is ask the police and see if they look at you funny and ask kawhat is that then go to the next one and the next untill no more or make it esay if you have it ther call the dmv and see whats up
  3. adam27

    adam27 Guest

    so is it yes or no lol:confused:
  4. azbill

    azbill Active Member

    I don't think he knows :(
    I got a headache trying to decypher what he said :rolleyes:
  5. adam27

    adam27 Guest

    not the only one lol come on guys i need an answer so i can get this project started :(
  6. turbo/chaos

    turbo/chaos Guest

    here try this motorized bicycle in the uk and see what you get man
  7. adam27

    adam27 Guest

    ye i tried that all the laws i found are about electric bikes
  8. colinc

    colinc Guest


    am not an authority, so feel free to check further but I think that you will find that in the UK a bike (or scooter) with an ic engine is legally a motorcycle so you need a licence, insurance and to pay vehicle excise duty. At the lower end you can keep it to less than or 50cc, max speed 30mph and a few other criteria and register it as a moped in which case it can be ridden at 16. The rider will need to pass a CBT test too. The bike will also need an annual MOT test.

    THis is why things like motorised scooters are confiscated by the cops if used on public road/pavements.

    Also, any modified bike will need to pass an SVA (Single Vehicle Approval) test at the local goods vehicle testing station before it can be licenced. All in all a minefield of legislation to keep what would only be a few bikes off the road.

    There's a good link here that may be of interest:

    Now you could convert a bike to electric, that's legal for over 14's. No tax insurance or test but you are limited to 200 watts rated power (250 watts in more normal in Europe and I think you'd talk your way out of that if pressed). However that isn't a lot of power.

    However, an avenue that you might want to explore is something I am contemplating; returning a defunct Autocycle to the road. I have aquired a frame for a 1950's New Hudson Autocycle off Ebay for the princely sum of £15. It will be rebuilt using mainly more modern parts such as brakes and wheels for safety and reliability but will in essence be a restoration. The vehicle identity travels with the frame so it should be possible to get an age related plate for it. The bike should be re-registerable with the DVLA and so avoids the complication of the SVA test that goes with a new build. Hopefully it also classes as an historic vehicle so qualifies for free road tax (VED). One complication is that I would need to get it classed a s moped - originally it would have had a 100cc Villiers engine which makes it a motorcycle. An annual MOT test and insurance would still apply. A moped licence would be ok - I'm lucky as I passed my test in the days when they gave you right that with a car licence, today you have to do a CBT and pass a test.

    The idea sprung from here:

    I hope that this is useful. As I said, I don't regard myself as an authority on this subject but like you am interested in persuing the idea and would be pleased to know what anyone else thinks.

    How old are you? This has quite a bearing.


    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 18, 2015
  9. thatsdax

    thatsdax Guest

    If Bicycles are not illegal yet in the Uk.. What I would do is....

    I would hit the kill switch on my bike and start pedaling. Then..What can they do? It is a bicycle !!!
  10. JemmaUK

    JemmaUK Guest

    My method exactly... the thing that gets me is you can be silly and get insurance and MOT and everything else for something that you can pedal at the same speeds for a time (if you are fairly fit) as you would cruise with a cyclemotor. I would understand it if you'd bolted on a 5 cylinder 10hp radial or something like that and could do 70mph... but 25mph, I mean really!

    Its a little bit of pain on mine - the only way I could get the kill to work was mount it under the saddle - I wondered why I got electric shocks till I realised the rubber shock mount on the handlebars was an insulator lol

    Jemma xx
  11. raph92

    raph92 Guest

    Bad News...and Good News

    I'm sorry to tell you this but if under 50cc it is classed as a moped.over 50cc its a have to be 16 to ride a moped and need license,mot,tax,the works.same for motorbike.If you want to register it try a single vehicle approval (SVA).There are loop holes.You can register it as a trial or enduro bike for motorbike racing.You can classify it as a disabled vehicle(not likely),or and this is the most promising say it is limited to under 6km per hour and limit it,(just for show of course),if you mark it as acertain capacity it might get rid of an annoying policeman.

    I had the same problem,you can run it as it is and act ignorant,use a loophole(research required) or register it for a SVA.Welcome and Good Luck.:cool:
  12. kerf

    kerf Guest

    My 2 cents

    When I was a kid, people used to make fun of Alabama. Man, I'm glad to live in Alabama after reading some post in this section. Government IS NOT about freedom, I don't care where you live, they're about taxes and meaningless regulation. It's ridiculous to have to jump through all these hoops just because you bolted a 2HP motor on a bicycle.
  13. BSA

    BSA Guest

    This is what it's like in Britain since we joined the European union!
  14. kerf

    kerf Guest

    That's tough to deal with. What scares me is, it looks as if we're on the same road.
  15. thatsdax

    thatsdax Guest

    What you can do is..

    always rotate the pedals.. That way if the cops stop you. You can say you were pedaling and not using the motor. It is a bicycle... When you see the cops. hit the kill switch and pedal. What can they do? It is a bicycle...
  16. fetor56

    fetor56 Guest

    If i wanna get really confused check it out with the Authorities...u won't get 2 consistant answers.
    You could try asking the cops like i did "what would u look for if u saw a small capacity motorized bicycle riding around the streets" but they would probably side-step the question and refer u to the Authorities.
    My advice is ride it sensibly and see what happens.
  17. monster

    monster New Member

    what could happen in the UK is what happened with homemade biodiesel. backyard biodiesel producers used to have to register with customs and excise and report how much fuel they made every quarter and pay tax on it. these ruels were designed for major chemical plants but were being applied to homebrew producers so something was wrong.

    of course few people bothered to register and it was an unenforceable law. this year they changed the rules saying that there was too much paper work for the C&E to deal with and made it tax exempt.

    i don't see why the same thing couldn't happen with high powered electric bikes and MB's. but it would take a lot more people to have an impact.
  18. azbill

    azbill Active Member

    it is policy around here to make an introduction post
  19. fastboy9

    fastboy9 Member

    Well, to make it legal you would need to have it regsitered with the DVLA (then tax insurance etc.) The law clearly states that any vehicle with a motor needs it, it just doesnt specifically mention motorized bikes. To get it registered these are the requirements:

    Design and construction: thoroughly robust, sound and road worthy construction
    Two rear view mirrors
    Front white lamp capable of making a beam on the road, no dip beam needed
    Rear lamp: red
    Rear number plate fixing with white illumination
    Stop lights: red, operated independently by front and rear brakes
    Ball-end brake levers
    Good brakes
    Audible warning device: electric not a bulb type horn
    Security device: padlock and chain or shackle lock fitted to machine
    Side stand
    Rear reflector
    Pedal reflectors
    Speedo: cycle computer type OK but needs to be capable of being illuminated
    No external projections
    Radio suppression
    Noise below 65db at 75% power
    Exhaust system needs European approval or manufacturer's name stamped on it
    Proof of engine power below 1kW: Ideally they wanted it stamped on a plate on the engine.

    So with a chinese happy time engine its basically impossible! Noise level would stop it the power is no way below 1kW and the engine is over 50cc, so you would need quite a bit of "creativeness" on the form! Also you have to actually take your bike to your local DVLA test centre where they assess it!

    So your better off sticking to the old kill switch and pedal, not that I am approving of any illegal activity. Thats just silly. ;)

    I found all my information from this site which tells the story of a guy who did get his frame mount GEBE style engine legalized.

    Click here to see it
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2008
  20. JemmaUK

    JemmaUK Guest

    Much as I love looking at NACC I have to say that some of the people on there are a little anal retentive..

    All things considered these machines are bikes. Yes, they have a small engine slapped on the back/middle/front (delete as applicable) but they are automatically safe for the road because thats what they are made for..

    I have had no problems with police - I could be invisible as far as they are concerned and that is the way it should be. There is also the fact that if I hit a car at 30-35mph I am going to be the one that is hurt, not the BMW driving idiot who just pulled out, so why should I pay out £200 for type approval and insurance just so the inattentive nerk who just killed me can repair his front wing for free..?

    I have been riding now for over two years and nary a problem so I think the insurance thing can be let lie - after all you can always say you didnt know... and the pink snuffling mammalian things with 18 nipples and a blue uniform cant say otherwise now can they....?

    rant mode : off

    Jemma xx