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Motorcycle EPA Emissions Rules

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Motorcycle EPA Rules

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EPA Optional Engine Certification Program Adopted Based on MIC Proposal

August 2, 2006 –  The Motorcycle Industry Council announced today that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) adopted an on-highway motorcycle engine emissions certification option, based on a proposal by the Motorcycle Industry Council, Inc. and its American V-Twin Committee.

This option allows a small volume manufacturer, custom builder, assembler and individual to purchase and install an engine that has already been EPA certified in another motorcycle, without having to recertify the motorcycle, as long as reasonable criteria are met.

In early 2005, the MIC American V-Twin Committee expressed concern that it may take years to incorporate the option of an engine certification program into the EPA regulations.  It was suggested that a manufacturer guidance letter would be a more expedient means for providing such a program, as similar provisions have been provided to manufacturers through such letters in the past.  The EPA asked the MIC to put its thoughts together in a draft guidance Letter for their consideration and MIC responded quickly.

Ted Sands, of Performance Machine, Inc. and Chair of the MIC American V-Twin Committee, states, "This is great news, not only for the custom motorcycle market, but for the V-Twin industry as a whole.  Without this option, there is no alternative to the full-blown vehicle certification, and many small builders would simply not be able to comply with the EPA regulations."

Until now, custom motorcycle builders and small volume manufacturers were required to conduct the elaborate vehicle testing and certification required by the EPA emissions regulations.  To certify one engine family can cost in excess of $10,000, not including the much higher cost and time that can be associated with the development of engine calibrations that comply with the emissions standards in the first place.

Under this option, a small volume manufacturer of highway motorcycles; a producer, seller, or assembler of highway motorcycle kits; or an individual is not required to apply for or receive EPA certification to install an engine certified under this procedure, provided such person:

1)  Installs a certified engine and emission related components following the installation instructions provided by the engine manufacturer

2)  Does not install the engine in a vehicle that exceeds the weight and gearing limits used to certify the engine and also does not modify the engine and emission related components in a way which could reasonably be expected to affect emissions

3)  Uses or installs the evaporative emission system parts supplied or specified by the engine manufacturer; for engines certified to permeation standards

4)  Permanently affixes the required engine manufacturer’s label in a readily accessible location on the vehicle

5)  Assures that the owners manual and warranty booklet are provided to the ultimate purchaser

The complete manufacturer guidance letter, titled Certification Procedure for Highway Motorcycle Engines, CISD-06-15 (MC), may be accessed on the MIC website in the V-Twin section.  It will also be posted on the EPA website along with other useful certification documents.

The Motorcycle Industry Council is a not-for-profit, national trade association representing manufacturers and distributors of motorcycles, scooters, motorcycle/ATV parts and accessories and members of allied trades, located in Irvine, California.

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