Are motorbikes with sidecars finally legal?
Ten years ago, the Gazette posted an Issues and Answer asking “Are sidecars legal?”
The answer then from Somjit Boonchaoy at the Phuket Provincial Transportation Office was, “Yes, it is. There is no Thai law that allows a motorcycle with a sidecar to be legally registered. This means they cannot be legitimately insured. Therefore, all motorcycles with sidecars are illegal. Motorcycles are the only two- wheel vehicles that may be legally registered and be legitimately insured.”
Now Tiger motorcycles have introduced a retro-style motorbike with sidecar. Tiger is a Thai company. These new motorbikes with sidecars are made and sold in Thailand.
Has the law changed? If so, are motorbikes with sidecars legal now?
Karsten bo Andersen, Kathu.
The Department of Land Transport will not register motorbikes fitted with sidecars or any attachments if the sidecar and/or attachments are not made by the original manufacturer or do not pass Department of Land Transport safety standards.
We do not allow the registration of rot salaeng (motorcycles with privately-made sidecar trays commonly used for transporting goods or people) because they are not safe for the driver or passengers.
However, if the sidecar confirms to our safety standards – and passes an inspection by our engineers – then we will allow it to be registered.
Titima Yukuntorn, chief of the Vehicle Registration Unit at the Phuket Provincial Transport Office.
We used to offer insurance for motorbikes, but we stopped offering policies for any motorcycles last year.
We now refer customers seeking insurance for motorbikes to the Road Accident Victims Protection Co Ltd Phuket office located at Phun Pol Night Plaza in Phuket Town.
Sirima Koonkit, Insurance officer at the Viriyah Insurance Phuket office.
Our company was set up by the government to ensure that all vehicle owners have some form of insurance [The company is better known by foreigners as the “government insurance office” using the letters “RVP” to identify itself – Ed.]
When we insure a motorcycle with a sidecar, we simply insure it as a motorcycle.
As such, motorcycle insurance premiums are calculated according to engine size: Class A) 1cc-70cc, premium is 161 baht per year; Class B) 71cc-125cc, premium is 323 baht per year; Class C) 126cc-150cc, premium is 430 baht per year; and Class D) greater than 151cc, premium is 645 baht per year.
However, before we can insure any motorcycles with sidecars, the applicant must have a certificate from the Land Transport Department verifying the vehicle passes all required safety standards.
This usually requires an inspection by Land Transport Department engineers.
For more information, call us at 076-246483/4 from Monday to Friday between 8:30am and 5:30pm. Our office located at Phun Pol Night plaza or visit our website rvp.co.th (Thai language only).
Pakpon Thongbaipetch, Insurance officer at the Road Accident Victims Protection Co Ltd Phuket office.