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Explanation of the DVSA's Motorcycle Test
The Motorcycle Test is conducted by the DVSA (Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency) at a DVSA Driving Test Centre and is split into two parts - Module 1 (15 minutes) and Module 2 (45 minutes). Module 1 covers all the manoeuvres such as the U-turn, emergency stop, swerve, figure of eight, etc. An examiner will, in most cases, use a radio to give the candidate directions for Module 2. For both Modules the test will start with production of the relevant paperwork and for Module 2 an eye sight check. At the start of Module 2 the candidate will then be asked some brief questions relating to the controls and maintenance of the motorcycle, as well as a couple of questions about balance and passengers. At the end of both tests a result is given; in the case of Module 1 you will be given a certificate (that lasts as long as your Theory Test) which allows you take the Module 2. Passing your Module 2 test gives you a licence (A1, A2 or A) that is in effect straight away (a pass certificate) - normally the examiner will keep your driving licence.
Currently, the DVSA has a family friendly policy which means that test times vary from one centre and examiner to the next. Generally they do not do tests much earlier than 8:00am and not later than 3:30pm. They do occasionally do evening and weekend tests, but these are more expensive and infrequent.
1/. Are the tests different for a Restricted A2 Licence compared to a Direct Access Scheme licence?
No, in all cases the duration and content of the tests is the same, and the examiner will be looking for the same standard.
2/. What happens if I fail my test?
By law you must wait ten working days before you can re-take the Module 2 and three working days before you can take the Module 1. Bank Holidays and Sundays are not counted as working days but Saturdays are.
3/. What happens if I disagree with the outcome of the test?
In our experience most examiners do not make decisions that are unfounded. They may be a little harsh occasionally, but there will nearly always be an adequate explanation. However, in the event that you are unhappy then they will never change the outcome. The only circumstances that would allow you to a have a free re-test would be if the test was not conducted fairly. This does occasionally happen, and is normally dealt with by the DVSA's Customer Services. An unfairly conducted test would be one where the quality of the radio was poor, or the examiners behaviour fell below an expected norm.
4/. What happens if I go the wrong way on test?
You have passed your test right up until the moment you do something that is not safe. If you go the wrong way or misunderstand the directions then you cannot fail provided whatever you do is done safely and that everyone else on the road can understand what you are trying to do.
5/. What is a voided test?
There are two types of voided test; one where you do something wrong and one where the DVSA do something wrong. If you do not produce the right paperwork, your motorcycle breaks down or you get lost through no fault of the examiner then your test will be voided. This means you will have to pay for a new test but you do not need to wait for 10 working days. If the examiner is ill, or the examiners radio or motorcycle breaks down, or if they are on strike, or the weather is too bad then the test will be voided. If it is due to weather you will get a free re-test. If it is through the fault of the DVSA then you will be given a free re-test and will be entitled to compensation (out-of-pocket expenses - as defined by the DVSA, having a relatively limited relationship with what you may have actually lost).
6/. Wasn't it just one test and now it is two?
Yes - from 27th April 2009 the test was replaced with two parts - Module 1 and Module 2 test. Module 1 is where the emergency stop and U-turn (as well as other slow and higher speed manoeuvres) are done off road. The Module 2 is almost exactly the same as the old motorcycle test but without the U-turn and emergency stop. There have been one or two other changes such as the independent ride.
7/. If I do my Module 1 test on a 125cc machine can I take my Module 2 on a 600cc?
No, they saw you coming! Whatever you do the Module 1 test on you must do the Module 2 on, even if you did the Module 1 on a 600cc you can't take Module 2 on a 125cc.