Motorcycle Legislation

A Lastest News about Non-Automobile Transport Equipment in France

Last updated: 26 Sep 2011

Safety of motorcycles, scooters, mopeds and tricycles for use on EU roads has been regulated since 1992. In 2002, the European Commission harmonized requirements and consolidated amendments for these two-, three- and four-wheel motorcycles by adopting directive 2002/24/EC, which is currently in force. The 2002 law is now undergoing review. The Commission hopes to simplify existing requirements for approval which are supposed to enter into force in July 2013 if the legislative process is completed as planned.
Motorcycles that fall within the scope of existing legislation require “type approval’” which basically means that the whole motorcycle and its individual parts are subject to a pre-market procedure known as “type-approval.”

EU directive 2002/24/EC covers motorcycles (vehicles) intended for use on road. Components, technical units and systems are included in the scope and subject to separate legislation as specified in Annex II of 2002/24/EC. The text differentiates several categories of motorcycles:
• L1e are two wheel vehicles; maximum design speed of not more than 45 km/h
• L2e are three wheel vehicles; maximum design speed of not more than 45 km/h
• L3e are two wheel vehicles without sidecar
• L4e are two wheel vehicles with a sidecar
• L5e are tricycles (engine/speed limitations over 45 km/h)
• L6e are light quadricycles with an unladen mass of not more than 350 kg (treated the same way as L2e)
• L7e are quadricycles with an unladen mass of not more than 400 kg (treated the same way as L5e)

The current law excludes:
• individual motorcycles
• vehicles with a design speed not exceeding 6 km/h
• vehicles used in competition (on- and off-road)
• vehicles for physically handicapped
• vehicles for pedestrian control
• tractors and machines
• vehicles for off-road leisure with 1 wheel in front, 2 in the back
• cycles with pedals and an electric motor, maximum speed not exceeding 25 km/h
Products which are not covered in the scope of the motorcycle directive may be regulated by other legislation; for example, electric bicycles require compliance with EU electrical safety legislation. Tractors and machines are regulated separately. For example, an all-terrain-vehicle for off-road use is regulated as a machine under the machine safety directive.

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Posted: 26 September 2011, last updated 26 September 2011

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