The only road legal Quad Bikes (quadricycles as they are formally known as) in the UK are ones which have past very stringent tests with authorities such as the TUV in Germany or the VCA in the UK. This means the vehicle is homologated – so just like a motorbike or car, it has to pass safety tests, strict emissions, and diagnostic displays and meet other specifications in order to be allowed on the road to be registered.
The current top level of these is Euro 4 homologation, which means the ATV or Quad Bike will pass the Euro 4 emission test and will certainly be fuel injected as it would not pass with the old carburettor system so that is the first question you should ask your dealer. Is this quad fuel injected? If not, it cannot have passed Euro 4 and be homologated. This is normally the quad you should buy if you wish to have something for road use.
The second tier of homologation is T1 (T1a and T1b) and T3 (T3a and T3b usually), which is a tractor homologation normally used for side by side vehicles instead of ATVs and quads although there are some quads that have this homologation and are still road legal but if registered as an agricultural machine, you cannot carry passengers and you can only travel for short journeys by road (not more than 1.5 kilometres) between land that’s occupied by the same person. So be careful – there are rules that will restrict the use of your quad depending on how it is registered – so always check. Here’s the information regarding agricultural use vehicles: www.gov.uk/vehicle-exempt-from-vehicle-tax.
These type of quads will vary, some may be fuel injected but not meet any emission standards, other may be the old style carburettor quads which will not be very fuel efficient and use old technology.
This list is not exhaustive and is only a guide but of course you should check with your own insurance as to the validity of you insurance if your V5c doesn’t list a type approval number. DVLA will and currently can register quads as PLG but this should only occur in cases in which they are legal, so do not take the registration document as telling you its road legal just because it has a registration number.
If you have any questions, you can contact your local dealer or the DVLA. You can also find more on the Gov.uk website here: https://www.gov.uk/quad-bikes-the-rules.
Quads come in all shapes, size and power. It’s important to choose a Quad/ATV that’s right for your age and experience. We strongly recommend that you visit your local approved dealer for advice and review the full range. No one under the age of 16 should operate a Quad or ATV capable of exceeding 30 miles per hour and or without adult supervision. Never ride under the influence of alcohol or other drugs.