Can I Road Register My Motocross Bike?

This is a surprisingly common question. Many riders make a considerable investment in their Dirt, Trail Enduro or Motocross bikes and don't necessarily want to buy yet another bike to be able to legally ride on public roads. There is often an expectation that getting a bike road roadworthy and road registered should just be a matter of bolting on the required (or missing) parts. Sadly this will often not be the case.

So, can you road register your motocross bike? Well, the absolute answer is yes. You could conceivably get a roadworthy and road register a ride-on lawnmower (in fact I'm reasonably sure it has already been done) ... if you are prepared to spend a lot of time and money on the task.

The realistic and practical answer however, is NO in most cases.

Though the following information is specifically from VicRoads in Victoria, the case will be very similar in all Australian States and Territories.

On page one of the VicRoads - Summary of Registration Requirements for Motorcycles and Mopeds PDF,
note (ii) reads: "Some motorcycles and mopeds are manufactured for agricultural or off road use and do not comply with the Standards for Registration. These vehicles are not eligible for normal registration."

The most significant part of that text is "are not eligible for normal registration".

To road register any vehicle, it must first comply with the required ADRs (Australian Design Rules). For bikes built after 1988 this means there will need to be a compliance plate on the chassis of the bike (usually attached to steering head).

Without the compliance plate there is a good chance your application for roadworthiness will be rejected out of hand, regardless of any changes or additions you may have made to the bike.

Assuming your dirt, trail, enduro or motocross bike meets the ADRs, it will then also need to meet the relevant state Roadworthiness or Safety Standards, which may require more than just adding the basics: Headlamp, Brake Light, Indicator Assembly, Mirrors and Number Plate Holder.

For example: On a motocross machine the exhaust system will almost certainly need to be changed (to a quieter one). There may be other mods required to the suspension, tyres, brakes and possibly even the seat. By the time all the required changes have been made, your bike will most likely no longer be the Motocross Weapon you were so proud of.

  • If you are thinking that you will want on-road capability, starting out with a Dual Sport bike will be a much better option, since the machine will be standards compliant from the outset. In other words, buy a new bike that is capable of being registered or a second hand bike that has already been registered.

  • If you believe your bike may be suitable for registration, either contact the manufacturer or your local bike shop and enquire about what it would take to get the bike roadworthy and ready for registration.

Further information can be obtained from the following sources:

More from VicRoads - What about the Australian Design Rules?

" The roadworthiness test is not a complete assessment of a vehicle's compliance with the Standards for Registration, which, in most cases, are the Australian Design Rules (ADRs). The ADRs are a set of minimum standards for the construction of motor vehicles and trailers. In most cases compliance with these standards cannot be assessed by inspection alone."

In other words, inspectors will be looking for a compliance plate. If your bike does not have one, you will need to get one. This could prove quite expensive.


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