1 Oct 2012

Motorcycle licensing changes take effect

9:54 am on 1 October 2012

Changes to the motorcycle licensing system will extend the time some people take to get their full licence and allow novice riders to buy bigger motorbikes.

Motorcycle licensing changes come into force on 1 October.

Motorcycle licensing changes come into force on 1 October. Photo: RNZ

Riders over 25 no longer have a shorter time requirement on their restricted licence, and the option to take a defensive driving course to speed up the process has been scrapped.

A new power-to-weight restriction will be put in place, replacing the old limit for novices.

This means riders can purchase motorbikes that better suit their weight, instead of being limited to a 250cc bike, which is sometimes too small for bigger people.

In November, the basic handling skills test will be made harder, and the New Zealand Transport Agency hopes to bring in a new training option in late 2013, as an alternative path through the licensing stages.

The changes come just over seven months after the car driving licence test became harder, which saw a significant drop in the pass rate.