Mike Penning, the new road safety minister, has announced a review of the two-part motorcycle test which was introduced in April 2009.
The minister ordered the review after listening to concerns from motorcycle groups and visiting a test centre to look at the testing procedure in more detail. The review will also consider ways to improve training.
Mike Penning said: “Road safety is a top priority and the testing and training on offer is vital in our work to cut the disproportionately high numbers of motorcyclists killed and injured on our roads each year.
"It is clear there are concerns among the motorcycling community about the safety of the new test’s off-road module. There have also been complaints about the difficulty for riders in some areas of accessing the off-road test centres.
"That is why I am asking riders, safety groups and motorcycle industry representatives to come forward with their ideas for how testing and training can be improved to ensure we produce safe, confident and responsible riders."
The new test was introduced in order to meet the requirements of the second EU Directive on driving licences. While most elements in the off-road module 1 test are required by the Directive, there may be scope to make some changes to the way in which the test is carried out.
The DfT review will look at the manoeuvres carried out in both modules 1 (off-road) and 2 (on-road) and whether these manoeuvres could safely be conducted in the on-road test.
The review will also look at other related motorcycle testing and training issues, including the options for training and testing for progressive access under the third driving licence directive and how any changes relate to wider proposals to improve motorcycle training and testing.
Views are welcome from motorcycle riders, trainers, road safety groups, the wider public and others on what aspects of the motorcycle test should be looked at, including how and where they think motorcycle testing might best and most safely be carried out.
The precise scope and terms of reference of the review will be determined following discussions with motorcycle groups and other interested parties, with the aim of concluding the review by the autumn.
Views should be submitted to the DfT by 31 July, by email: RUSD4consultation@dft.gsi.gov.uk