You are here
Home > BMF News >

Petrol mopeds & 125s could be banned by 2030

The UK Government has proposed banning new sales of petrol-powered mopeds and 125cc machines by 2030, with all bigger-engined motorcycles and scooters following suit by 2035. The ban could come sooner “if a faster transition seems feasible,” according to the long-awaited consultation document, which was launched on 14th July. It covers all L-category vehicles, from L1 to L7, including mopeds, motorcycles, tricycles and quadricycles.

“We have already committed to phasing out fossil fuel use across road transport,” said Trudy Harrison MP, Minister of State for Transport, “with sales of new petrol and diesel cars and vans ending as early as 2030…It is therefore important that L-category vehicles do not remain fossil-fuelled as the rest of the transport fleet cleans up.”

The UK moped market is already electrifying fast – in 2020, less than one in five new mopeds were battery-electric, but the figure grew to over 40% in 2021 and was over 50% in the first half of 2022. So for mopeds, eight years to fully transition doesn’t sound like a problem, and the Motorcycle Industry Association (MCIA) has supported the move. However, it has pleaded for more time for the A1-class (125s in other words), in which electric sales make up a far lower percentage. In the L3 motorcycle class as a whole (A, A1 and A2) electrics made up just 2.86% of new sales in 2021.
In support of its proposals, the Government pointed to recent advances in electric motorcycle R&D in Britain. Triumph has just unveiled its TE-1 prototype, while BSA and Norton have both started electric projects – all three companies are receiving state financial support for this work. The consultation document also singled out Maeving, the Coventry-built retro electric bike, which is now going into production, while the Arc Vector has just been relaunched.

The National Motorcyclists Council (NMC) was due to meet to consider the proposals on 21st July. Jim Freeman, Chair of the BMF said: “The BMF will oppose any proposals to ban the use of motorcycles powered by internal combustion engines while such vehicles are still capable of being run. We also oppose a ban on the sale of new internal combustion engine-powered motorcycles while there is the possibility of providing alternatives to fossil fuel and while the electric vehicle charging infrastructure does not adequately support electric motorcycles.”
He added: “The BMF supports a technology-neutral approach to powering new motorcycles; we do not accept that electric battery technology is the only approach. The BMF, as a consequence, opposes the proposed ban in ICE bikes, for the foreseeable future, until the above criteria have been met, whatever date has been targeted, 2030, 2035, 2050. The Government has agreed to follow a technology neutral approach to new motorcycle power plants but appear to have unilaterally decided that battery electric is the only option. This is unacceptable.”

The Government is asking for responses to its consultation document by 21st September 2022 – email your response here


Written by Peter Henshaw

Read NMC article here 

Read FEMA article here


Main picture courtesy of ACEM