22nd November 2021

Anti-green bike modifications likely to be made illegal

New measures by the Department for Transport (DfT) clarify their position to accelerate green initiatives.

It was revealed recently in a meeting with the National Motorcyclists Council (NMC) that modifying or customising a motorbike could be made illegal if the modification would generate more pollution.

This proposal would rule out many modifications to performance exhaust systems and power commanders. The proposals have also been designed to stamp out the practice of modifying electric bicycles and e-scooters to make them faster and more powerful.

The terms are laid out in DfT’s ‘Future of Transport’ review amid a series of other plans across the transport industry to help the UK reach its ‘Net Zero’ carbon emissions target by 2030.

"Although we are pleased to learn that riders will not be banned from modifying their bikes if this does not reduce environmental performance or increase speeds beyond a particular motorcycle’s design specification, this leaves several areas where legitimate reasons to modify could still be denied," said Craig Carey-Clinch from the NMC. "There is also a large question mark about how the proposals will affect older motorcycles."

"We welcome the DfT’s willingness to discuss these matters in more detail and to include the NMC and its members in work to design regulations that are proportionate, but we remain strongly concerned that the proposals have been inspired by issues that do not apply to the majority of motorcycling, but to a much narrower range of mainly electric products."

"Engine modifications often improve how a bike runs and the freedom to be able to make these changes must remain. But it does seem clear that in the drive to reduce vehicle emissions and to decarbonise all vehicle types, it seems that at the very least, modifications that lead to increased emissions from petrol motorcycles and cars are likely to be outlawed."

If you’d like to find out more, you can visit the DfT website here

What do you think of this new proposal? Let us know in the comments below.

Hi Personally, whilst I understand some people will perhaps make dangerous modifications to bikes (and cars) I do feel this potential government intervention needs to be watched as this could perhaps be the thin end of the wedge, and government may see this as a start to impose even more restrictions on vehicle modification. Many older machines generally lend themselves more to modifications, with modern machines a little more difficult to modify (though not impossible, and perhaps expensive) so, the government must see and realise that this will naturally limit people hoping to make modifications to their latest machines (just out of interest, are they going to impose the same restrictions on cars ? Possibly not, if they want re-electing ?)

Adibouy, 27/11/2021