MAG UK Choppers Safe

In January 2012 the Motorcycle Action Group (MAG UK) reported on their website that, “The European Commission has proposed that part of its controversial new ‘Anti-Tampering’ regulations, which will affect all future bikes registered for the road, should be re-written to prevent chop-builders from using ‘long-forks’.”

As we commented earlier this month, the issue of “long forks” and “extreme chopper style” was reported in two editions of Motorcycle News (MCN ) in February, followed by editorials in Back Street Heroes and 100% Biker magazines.

MCN claims that MAG UK are reported as saying, “It could make building choppers impossible and accuses the EC of basing proposals on ignorance.”

MAG’s General Secretary is quoted as saying, “The intention to restrict modifications to forks had been expressed in a meeting between representatives of the EC, DfT and motorcycle lobby groups. This is a simple case of an official on the EC who doesn’t understand motorcycles but doesn’t like the look of extended forks believing he needs to regulate it.”

Choppers safe – for now…

However MAG UK in their latest article on their website, headlines, “Choppers safe – for now…” stating that, “MAG(UK) has been linked to reports that choppers are going to be banned by the EU from next month (April 2012) – that is not going to happen and we have not said it would.”

However MAG UK continues “There is a very real risk that proposals from the European Commission will restrict what bike designers and builders can do in future” adding as a caveat “but a ban is not imminent.”

This is fantastic news from MAG UK to clarify the issue relating to a discussion paper from which a presentation was given at a meeting regarding, “ steer-ability, cornering properties and turn-ability – to address issues observed with extreme chopper style vehicles”.

This was the December meeting of the European Commission’s MCWG (Motor Cycle Working Group) attended by a variety of stakeholders, including FEMA (Federation of European Motorcyclists Associations), FIM (Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme), ACEM (The Motorcycle Industry In Europe), Member States Government representatives and others.

The MAG article goes on to explain that, “Some current production models are thought to be incapable of meeting the suggested tests, so customised bikes with more front-ends could be at an even greater disadvantage.”

Indeed some main stream manufacturers of these styles come to mind, specifically the models such as the Honda Fury, Victory Jackpot and Harley Davidson Wide Glide.

However as reported earlier, according to the Commission representative, “The objective of this proposal focuses specifically on mainstream manufacturers and not unique builds or small series which would remain under member state single vehicle approval”.

The Commission wanted to have a U turn and slalom test for ALL motorcycles, scooters etc but gave the unfortunate example of extreme chopper style to justify the test. However, at Right To Ride we are not aware of data that would show these as being over-represented in accidents- so designing a Type Approval test that would apply in 99.99% of cases to vehicles not prone to being a problem, would not be cost-effective and in our view difficult to justify.

This is where we stop. We said there was no proposal against “long forks” or “extreme chopper styles” and we are delighted to note that MAG UK has agreed with us.

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Information

MAG UK

Choppers safe – for now… – Click Here

Anti-tampering extended to cycle parts – Click Here

Right To Ride

Choppers Not Banned EU – Click Here

The Eu Chop Shop – Click Here

The EU Chop Shop – pdf 702kb – Click Here

Long Forks or False Prophets – Click Here

Working Group on “Motorcycles” (MCWG) 14 December 2011 Regulation for approval and
market surveillance of L-category vehicles – Click Here

Regulation on vehicle functional safety requirements on the vehicle functional safety
requirements (RVFSR) – for the approval of two- or three-wheel vehicles and quadricycles – Click Here

Draft meeting minutes of the Motorcycle Working Group MCWG/ MVEG on Motorcycles(L-category vehicles).Brussels, 14 December 2011 – Click Here

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