GoKunming Forums

New e-bike rules 2019

AlPage48 (1353 posts) • +1

Routine but random (moving locations) checks would catch quite a few, but to really make it happen China needs to get serious about the penalties.

Too often the fines are just 10 RMB or some other ridiculously small amount, cheaper than the cost of insurance by far.

Xiefei (539 posts) • +3

I just got my plates in Kunming, and talked with the traffic police, and my bike dealer (Niu) about the expected changes. Here are a few highlights:

- Any bike over 50kg or top speed over 25km/h needs to get plates by April.

- You can get free plates (the white ones) at any Kunming Traffic Police station. The green plates are fine as well.

- After April, these large bikes will be treated as motorcycles. You will need a license and insurance. As motorcycles, you most likely will not be allowed to register or drive them inside the 2nd Ring Road. Most dealers are planning to stop selling these bikes in the cities after April.

- Any bike that already has the plates will be fine for four more years (2023).

- Any bike on the road that doesn't get these plates by April will be subject to fines or confiscation.

Having seen past attempts to regulate ebikes fail, I'm not entirely sure they'll go through with enforcement when the time comes. I still think it's a good idea to get the plates, because if they do end up enforcing this, you'll have no recourse and no way to get the plates after April.

The last attempt to enforce a registration system (ever notice some older ebikes with small blue plates?) failed for several reasons. The registration process was poorly planned, and the registration window, which was overwhelmed, quickly stopped processing registrations, leaving the vast majority of ebikes unregistered.

This time, they're giving a long advance notice, and providing the plates for free, removing a lot of excuses for outrage if they actually do start cracking down on unregistered bikes.

Also, it's a response to national regulations, so compliance could affect things like the ongoing bid for "civilized city" status, giving them further incentive to follow through.

Xiefei (539 posts) • +1

Here's what you need to register your bike with the Traffic Police:

- The bike
- ID or Passport (I successfully registered with my passport)
- The original Fapiao (tax receipt) from the purchase. They might accept a written purchase contract if you bought the bike secondhand, though it's best to include the bike's serial number.
- The 合格证 or certificate of legal production and sale. Every e-bike dealer is supposed to supply one of these at purchase, and it should have the bike's serial number printed on it.
- If the fapiao is made out in your company's name, you need a stamped letter from that company asking the traffic police to register the bike in your name.

I went on the first day of registration. As you can imagine, there were a lot of people without the proper paperwork, and they said they are willing to give a lot of leeway for those cases, but they hadn't worked out all the specifics yet. It's best to just show up to the traffic police station with whatever documentation you have.

These license plates are free of charge.

You can also get the green plates from the various police checkpoints around the city. These have a fee attached to them, as they come with a GPS tracker and theft insurance.

OceanOcean (1193 posts) • +1

Bit confused ...if you have a bike over 50kg/25kmh WITH plates already, do you still have to get license and insurance (and stay out of ring roaded area) or are you OK as you are for another 4 years?

JanJal (1199 posts) • 0

Between the lines I'm reading that the plates in question are the physical representation of the "license" for the vehicle itself - as opposed to some kind of driving license for the scooter drivers?

If so, then if your vehicle has plates, it has the license already and there is no need to change that until 2023.

tigertiger - moderator (5096 posts) • +1

I think a bit more digging is needed on the following points:
There are 3 new classes of vehicle covering ebikes. 2 are motorcycle classes, but these are new classes and may well be allowed inside the inner ring road.

As they are new classes of motorbike it might be that a simpler test than the usual motorbike test might come into play.

If that is the case, don't assume that if you have a motorbike licence already, that you will be covered.

As these are national regs, it would also be worth checking websites in BJ, SZ, and SH. These sites get more traffic and have more staff. Some of the questions we have may have been answered already.

OceanOcean (1193 posts) • +1

I think the police should actually focus their time/fines on e-bike drivers who drive the wrong way up the street or who text on their cell phones or carry sofas/fridges or drive at night with no lights etc.

JanJal (1199 posts) • +1

They may yet do that, but automate the detection with cameras. But to link the vehicles to their owners, they need the vehicles to be registered.

tigertiger - moderator (5096 posts) • +2

If they do regular sweeps with on the spot fines, and a delay in processing them (you have to stand in a queue for an hour), people will register very quickly.

Perhaps one solution to the backlog of tests would be that when you register your bike, you also have to register for a test, linked to your ID number. And you carry that test registration with you until you get your license. Then it does not matter if people have to wait a year, they are registered for a test.

Related forum threads

Login to post