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European success: you can now take the A2 test on a 250 cc bike

As we reported before, from 1 November 2020 European law makes it possible to do the A2-licence test with a 250 cc motorcycle instead of 400 cc.

On 5 May 2020 the European Union published the Commission Directive (EU) 2020/612, amending Directive 2006/126/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council on driving licences. One of the amendments was the lowering of the minimal displacement of A2-licence test motorcycles. This means that from 1 November 2020 all European Union member states must have implemented the lower displacement for A2 test motorcycles in their national laws.

Dolf Willigers, General Secretary of FEMA, comments: “We are very pleased to see that finally in most member states and EEA countries it is possible to do the A2-licence test with a 250 cc motorcycle. I can only hope that the other countries will follow soon. We have been waiting a long time for this and worked hard to accomplish this.” (photograph by Wim Taal)

As far as we have been able to find, most countries have done that. For some countries it is clear that they will not make it and from others we just don’t know because they haven’t published anything yet. However, even when a national government did manage to implement the new European rule in time, this doesn’t necessarily mean that you will be able to do your A2 licence test on a 250cc motorcycle. In some countries, like Sweden, it is just not possible to do the test from 1 November and you will have to wait until next year‘s spring. In other countries you could do the test, but driving schools must buy new motorcycles first and they will most probably only do that if they are aware of the change and if there is enough demand to justify the investment, even more when the old 400 cc bikes aren’t financially written off yet.

For several years FEMA has lobbied for this reduction to enable women and smaller men to pass the A2 test. Statistics from several European countries, especially Sweden and the Netherlands, showed that women have a disadvantage to pass the special manoeuvres tests. One of the causes for this is that test motorcycles are often too heavy and too big for women and smaller men to handle. As an observer in the Driving Licence Committee we managed to play an active role in the decision-making process that led to this outcome.

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