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Re-Register Bike in France


GlassLady
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My husband and I have just moved over to France, and whilst there is lots of advice on re-registering cars, I cannot find what process we need to follow to re-register our two bikes here. There is even a guy who lives near here who handles the re-registering of cars for newcomers - for a fee - but even he won't help us.

Where can we find out the process/forms/payments required?

Thanks

Tee and Howie

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Where you can find out really depends on how good your French is but you are really going to have to be more specific because there is no one single process for all bikes.

Factors applying:

1) Where you are, some prefectures and DRIRE offices are more helpful than others.

2)What make they are, some manufacturers are more helpful than others.

3) How old they are, for over 25's (over 30's from next year) it's a separate registration process. Foe newer bikes there is a big difference between pre and post 1996 when paneuropean homologation came in.

4) The power output. Over 100hp and it's very difficult.

The worst case scenario would be something like a pre96 'blade in 50.

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We've been resident here in Deux Sevres for 2 months and I had no problems registering the car here.  Changed the headlamps, got a CT and applied for an attestation d'identification from the local DRIRE (cheaper than the manufacturer!) .  The local tax office issued a tax certificate without even seeing the original receipt.  Took the lot to the prefecture and got my carte gris.  20 euros at the local garage and new number plates were fitted.  Insurance is half what it was in the UK, including breakdown cover.

Different story with the bike (1992 Honda Pan European).

Even though the DRIRE website states that vehicles with a EC style certificate d'immatriculation (ie the new style V5C) can be submitted directly to the prefecture without a separate certificate of conformity (the CoC details are already printed down the left hand side of the V5C) the clerk at the prefecture refused to process my application.

I went to the DRIRE but they wouldn't help and insisted I contact Honda France for a certificate of conformity, so I rang Honda on 3 June.  I sent them a copy of my V5C together with a covering letter.  After 2 weeks of waiting for the mail, I phoned them again.  Sorry, they said, but we'll get on to it this week.

Another 2 weeks and I followed up again.  This time they told me the V5C was incorrect - the VIN had some digits missing.  I told them the V5C was compiled from the original Honda UK produced V55 when the bike was first registered in the UK.  After a lot of arguing, they asked me to swear an attestation sur honneur giving details of the VIN as stamped on the plate.  I did this, as well as stripping off the tupperware and taking a digital photograph of the VIN plate.  I sent this off to them and guess what?  No response.

One week ago, I phoned them again.  Still no action taken.  Having dug deep into my stock of french swear words, they apologised for their dreadful service and promised to get my certificate out in the post this week.  Naturally, I'm still waiting.

At one stage it looked as if I might be forced to put the bike through an Single Vehicle Approval test ( a lot of work) or take it back to the UK to sell it.

Fingers crossed.

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Thanks for that - our bikes are

Suzuki GS500 registered in 2002. Apparently 54bhp.

And a Yamaha Thundercat 600cc from 1997. I think the bhp is around 100.

I hope that is enough info. I am a bit vague, cos I don't know much about bikes. I just ride 'em.

T

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Hi

we've had loads of problems trying to re-register our bikes here and now after 18 months of wrangling have decided to take them back to the UK to sell.

Wish we'd realised about the BHP and CoC issues before bringing them here.!!!

Btw, my bike is a Honda CBR400 RR (babyblade), this model has never been registered in France.  My husbands is a Suzuki Hayabusa which of course is over the 100m bhp!!

Sundaydriver - you mention a "Single Vehicle Approval test ( a lot of work)", I suspect this is what the D.R.I.R.E suggested I do with my bike.  They gave me a form (about 15 pages long) to take along to the l'U.T.A.C. (Union Technique de l'Automobile  du Motocycle et du Cycle) which is at Monthlery near Paris.  They warned this could cost in excess of a thousand euro's and even then the prefecture here in Perigueux may still refuse to re-register.

The Hayabusa could be restricted but, again a lot of work and expense involved.

 

ps  It took me about 6 letter's and about the same amount of phone calls to get responses out of both Suzuki France and Honda France!
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Right lets get the first thing straightened out. A  V5c is not the same thing as a certificate of conformity and nor does it replace one. You can have a 100 year old bike with a new V5c which conforms to nothing as there was nothing to conform to when it was built.

Where. I think, the confusion arises is that there is enough info on a V5c to go to DRIRE and get  an “attestation of conformity” which is as good as a manufacturer’s “certificate of conformity”. However , this does not apply to bikes as their details are not held on the DRIRE computer. Furthermore it doesn’t even apply to all cars  from before 1996.

1996 was a very important year. That was when pan-european conformity or homologation came in. All 1996 onwards vehicles (apart from specials) pass their conformity tests on an EC wide basis and only slight national deviations such as headlamps and speedo are allowed. Now when I say 1996 onwards I mean “model year” and not year of manufacture or even first registration. For example I have a Divvy that was registered in ’96 but it was a leftover from the previous year’s range which makes it a ’95  even though it may actually have  been manufactured in ’94.

You can always tell a ’96 onwards (and therefore pan-euro conforming) vehicle because it has a 17 digit VIN No. and I expect this is what Honda were on about.

 

Basically you’ve got 2 problems. Firstly you’re dealing with Honda who must be the most useless of all the major manufacturers when it comes to these things. Secondly even if they were any good at it like Yamaha you’re still not going to get a cert of full conformity without a 17 digit VIN No. (might be different for a French made bike). The irony of this is that, because of its age, your Pan is not fully “pan” and the best you can hope for is a cert of partial conformity which you can take to DRIRE who will then tell you what you need to change. After you have changed all the bits they said you take it back for an inspection and if they are happy with it they will then give you an attestation of conformity which you can use to get a carte grise at the prefecture. This  is not a quick process but still a lot quicker than the single vehicle type approval route.

Also be aware that not all DRIRE offices are all that accommodating  but then you don’t necessarily have to go through the nearest one.

 

 Sub 100hp bikes with a 17 digit VIN No. and a helpfull manufacturer are quite easy to do but you can completely forget about grey imports.

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Blimey, that is a lot more complicated than I had first imagined. My husband is forming the opinion that it would be easier to sell the UK registered bikes back in the UK and then buy French registered ones. My only thing against that is my concern about the lack of CT for bikes - so unless you buy new (or know what you are looking at) you could buy a duff one.

We are not technically minded - at least not enough to see if we were being sold a lemon.

Thanks for all the info,

T

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T before you go any further check out the ease of getting a c of c .

Yamaha, Triumph and BMW are very good at this but Honda are useless and Suzuki may well be the same

Your bikes should be young enough to have the very important 17 digit VIN No's and with those (and assuming that the 'cat is just under 100hp, which I think it is) and a reasonably cooperative manufacturer/importer then it is quite straightforward.

At the end of the day it may well be simpler to sell in the UK and buy in France. However bear in mind that s/h bike prices are usually dearer and the bikes usually have much higher mileages. The lack of a CT doesn't count for much just like with an MOT. I once got an MOT on a bike with a seized engine, it  wouldn't turn over never mind start.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Thanks - we are going to give it a go and try to re-register. I think your point about the high prices of second hand bikes in France is probably the motivation for us! At least we know our bikes, and what is wearing out. And the price differential hopefully makes the complicated paperwork worth it in the log run.

 

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If it helps I re-registered two of my bikes - a 916 Duke and a BMW a couple of years ago. I got hold of a second-hand speedo (mph clocks not legal) with 2,500 kms on it - altho the bike had done 12,500 miles. (I have no idea how to explain this away if I ever sold it). I also had to replace the headlight reflector - fiddly but achievable.

The Beemer had to have a new headlight unit but the speedo has both mph and kmph. I took both bikes to local dealers who filled in the necessary documentation, in spite of 'illegal' exhausts on the Duke, got both conformity certs from BMW France (after chasing them up via Munich) and Ducati France. No problems re HP. Then off to the Impot for the VAT exemption and then to the Prefecture for the carte grises. Made up my own plates. Surprisingly all very easy.

On general bikey things I find insurance horrendously expensive compared to the UK, secondhand prices seem to be lower than the UK. Tyres are cheaper, servicing by dealers haphazard - you really need to get them to pay attention to the service books and fill them in.  

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I'm in the process of re registering our bike a Yamaha trx850.  so far so good.  Had to get a cert of conformity from Yamaha (100 euros) (same as the car) took about 6-7 weeks but that was in Jul/Aug.  Now have an appointment with the Drire for an inspection.  So fingers crossed all will be ok. 

The hardest thing is finding a replacement wing mirror and having to buy a anti vol lock to satisfy the insurers.  We have a small U lock but it is not on the list given by the insurers and we no longer have the receipt.  So far most of the locks seen are huge and are not practical to be carried on the bike.  It has also been suggested by most bike shops we buy a large U lock just for the receipt and don't even use it, one even offered to sell us a small one and show a large on on the receipt, but then we wouldn't have the right key if it was ever needed for proof in the event of a theft.  So it seems most bikers have the same problem.

Anyone else come across this

J & S

www.longhousefrance.co.uk

 

 

  

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Nope     but then I never insure my bikes for theft     but then none of my bikes are particulary nickable. In the UK Trixies aren't high on the shopping list of the type of folk steal bikes either but it could be different in France, after all they were designed for the French market in particular.

I'd have thought it would be quite easy to fabricate a couple of carrying brackets to hold a large U lock onto a side trellis.

I too found Yamaha to be uncharacteristically helpful for a Jap bike manufacturer. Perhaps it's because all their European operations (and they even have a factory in Spain) are coordinated centrally from Holland

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  • 3 weeks later...

I've registered my 1998 Honda VFR800 this year. I found the process tiresome and expensive but relatively straightforward... in the end.

My bike, bought new in UK, did not come with a c of c, so that was the first problem. I wrote to Honda in Paris telling them that I wanted to register the bike, could they supply a c of c. They sent some information and an application form. It depends on what type approval marks you have on the various components of the bike, tyres, mirrors, lamps, silencer etc. If you can show that it complies with EU requirements Honda can provide a certificate which you can take directly to the prefecture. Otherwise you're going to get a partial conformity document and the bike will have to pass a test.

I had replaced the speedometer on my bike with one which reads in KPH only. I did this because I found the dual calibrations on the UK one too difficult to read accurately (by which I mean the kph readings!). I also had the odometer converted to kms at the same time. The form also states that headlights may need to be changed so that they dip to the right. You have to note all the 'E' number markings for all of the requested components.

The duly completed form was returned to Honda together with a cheque for 100€ and a copy of the V5C.

The c of c arrived about 6 weeks later and I was able to go to the prefecture and obtain my carte grise and then find a dealer to make my new plate.

 

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i have got a yamaha diversion and i got a translator to register mine for a fee but i believe the process was straight forward.got a letter off yamaha saying the bike conformed to french requirements cost 100 euro's. took reciept to tax office to show i had paid vat when i bought it new though you can get the relevant form from tax office without a reciept (i just did that for my car)went to drire cost 86 euro and was made to change headlight they then sent all the paperwork to prefercture where i went to collect carte gris another 120 euro's no controle technique required job done.just done the car now have to do the van and then if anyone has any info on relevant rules regarding a 61/2 ton lorry would like to hear from you as i have one to change also
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http://www.yamaha-motor.fr/corporate/yamaha_global/country_finder.jsp?continent=Europe

Is the webpage with the addresses of all the Yamaha importers in Europe

If it's a relatively new bike it might be worth speaking to Yamaha UK before the French. A lot of bikes like TTR250's have actually been coming into the UK through France.

Yamaha France are generally very good but if they don't play ball you can always go above their head to Yamaha Europe in Holland. 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...
hubby has a 91/92 Bimota YB8 no chance whatsoever of getting a COC as manufacturers have gone belly up, what can we do now ???

We've been told by some Kawasaki turbo owners that hubbys turbo should get immatriculation fairly easily because its 20 years old, they reckon V5 and tax form off to the prefecture, I doubt this but maybe we'll try it next week and let you know what they say
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