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Practical Motorcycle Test

By: Jack Claridge - Updated: 14 Jun 2013 | comments*Discuss
Practical Motorcycle Test Motorcycle

The practical motorcycle test has some similarities to the practical driving test for cars. The first and most obvious difference between the two tests is that with the motorcycle practical the examiner cannot actually be present on the vehicle with the candidate so must ride in front on their own motorcycle. With this in mind the test candidate will be fitted with a radio and an earpiece so that they can receive instructions clearly from their examiner on what to do and what directions to take.

You must ensure that before you take your test you have all the necessary protective clothing and headgear. Here is an overview of what you should always wear as a motorcyclist:

  • A safety helmet - this must comply with either BS 6658:1985 with BSI Kitemark or UNECE Regulation 22.05
  • Goggles or Visor - should not be tinted and should comply with a British Standard with BSI Kitemark, or a European standard and a mark equivalent to the BSI Kitemark (ECE 22-05)
  • Protective clothing including a jacket and trousers, or all-in-one that offers additional protection for the shoulders, knees and elbows
  • Motorcycle gloves
  • Sturdy footwear such as motorcycle boots
  • High visibility aids, such as a fluorescent vest or strip over your jacket, brightly coloured helmet and clothing etc

You should be aware that examiners cannot and do not provide protective clothing or headgear and therefore if you turn up for the test ill equipped you will not be allowed to take it.

The only exemptions to the safety helmet rule are for individuals of the Sikh community who wear a turban.


It is important that you take your theory test certificate, your provisional driver's licence and your compulsory basic training (CBT) certificate on the day of the test. If you fail to take any of the required paperwork then you will not be allowed to take the test thus forfeiting your test fee and requiring you to make another booking at further cost to you.

Module 1 of the Motorcycle Test

This test normally takes place at specific location, where a course is laid out for you to follow. During the course of the test you will be asked to: wheel your bike & use its stand; perform a slalom and figure of eight; demonstrate cornering and hazard avoidance techniques, come to a controlled & an emergency stop and do a U-turn. There is a minimum speed requirement of 50 kilometres per hour (approximately 32 miles per hour) for the hazard avoidance and emergency stop exercises.

A slow ride exercise is also carried out in order for the examiner to ascertain your ability to control the bike at low speeds.

You'll be given feedback at the end of this part of the test and if successful you be given your module one pass certificate.

Module 2 of the Motorcycle Test

Part two of the test is conducted on the road and usually takes about 40 minutes. You must take with you all the paper work required for the module 1 test, plus your module one pass certificate.

Your examiner will also ask you to answer some questions about your bike, such as how to check tyre pressure, oil levels etc on your vehicle. This is designed to prove that you not only have road awareness but a knowledge of basic motorbike maintenance.

You will questioned about safety and balance and the examiner will conduct an eyesight test - which is the same as for the Practical Driving Test for cars.

For the independent driving section, you'll be out on the roads and the examiner will follow you, issuing instructions via a radio connection. You'll be expected to demonstrate that you can come to a halt normally, pull out from behind a parked vehicle and perform a hill start.

At the end of this part of the test, you'll be given feedback and will be told whether you've passed or failed.

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