Motorcycle tuning

TÜV SÜD knows the models, possibilities and limits

Photo: TÜV-Süd

In addition to the passion for driving, motorcyclists usually have another passion: screwing. Scrambler and Naked Bikes are all in vogue – pure enjoyment of riding and optics are in demand. The aftermarket is ready with a huge offer. But the regulations around the conversion are also manifold – even if parts approvals are available. The officially recognised experts of TÜV SÜD know from decades of experience what motorcyclists should pay attention to during the conversion. You know the regulations from the Effeff and are the right contact persons when it comes to larger tuning projects.

"Brake lines, handlebars, brakes, attachments and removals, footrests and, and, and – every change to the production model always requires a holistic view," says Lars Krause, motorcycle expert at TÜV SÜD. For example, the combination of components alone may require an amendment report in accordance with Clause 19 of the Road Traffic and Registration Regulations (StVZO) – even though parts reports are actually available. Even components such as handlebars, which are usually approved for many models, are required to take a closer look. This is especially true for drivers of rare brands. Krause: "Parts reports are usually only prepared for the most common models. But if I'm driving an exotic, it's very likely that I'll need a change report for a component with approval." Keyword rare bikes: When importing motorcycles from third countries, a full report according to Clause 21 StVZO must normally be prepared.

Just unscrew everything and already my bike is a cool Naked Bike? If the machine is available as standard even without cladding, the conversion is not a problem – one should think. Nevertheless, there are also pitfalls lurking here: after dismantling the cladding on a motorcycle, the oil pipe was pushed to the exhaust manifold by the wind pressure – the machine caught fire. Less dramatic: Exposed brackets can represent sharp edges that need to be removed naturally. "In any case, we recommend that you speak to an officially recognized TÜV SÜD expert before the conversion. We know the models, the possibilities and the limits," emphasizes motorcycle expert Krause. Bikers should always have experts on board. For many models and conversions there would also be expert opinions – then you would be on the safe side.

Without the cladding, the driving physics also changes. This is because cockpit, side, tank and, above all, rear and front wheel cladding ensure sufficient contact pressure on the wheels on the road at high speeds beyond 200 kilometres per hour. "The impact on driving behaviour should not be underestimated by those interested in conversion. Especially when it comes to grip," says the expert. But the conversion can also have other effects. For example, the change in weight can significantly increase the pendulum inclination.

The examples show: What effect a conversion really has in the end and which rules then work – only the experts from TÜV SÜD know this. They bring the necessary experience and know every detail through years of accompanying the motorcycle scene. The experts are available for change assessments at more than 350 TÜV SÜD service centers. Not only do they ensure that the necessary regulations are complied with, but they are available with advice on every conversion project. This does not only apply to motorcycles. TÜV SÜD experts are also in demand from experts in special areas such as vehicle import, classic car registration or motorsport vehicles. They provide technical tips and are available with databases when it comes to major conversions. They also prepare all the necessary expert opinions.

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