DVLA Machine Dating Info


The MZRC (the Club) can help to identify the year of manufacture of all motorcycles with their makers’ origin in the former IFA group of companies. The certificates we issue are accepted by the UK DVLA when machine keepers wish to register bikes which are not in production and the manufacturer no longer exists or no longer holds the necessary records.

Though it is not a strict requirement of the DVLA, there is a preference on their part that the Club shall inspect bikes prior to issuing a Dating Certificate. I have been the Dating Officer for ten years and in that time all machines being put forward for registration have been inspected with only three exceptions.

The DVLA have straight forward criteria to enable machine dating:
the machine must be a complete entity with no parts missing;
the machine must be a faithful representation of the model.

Obtaining a certificate is therefore not so onerous as you may fear because the machine can be a wreck and certainly not roadworthy.

My best advice to potential bike purchasers and restorers is to do as much research as possible before buying a machine. The internet is wealth of information and crucially is full of photos, some of which will date back to when a machine was in production.

In terms of restoration, I strongly urge you contact me as early as possible, to save unnecessary expense.


Q  How do I contact the MZRC Dating Officer?

A  Please contact me on 01453 549928 or markredding@uwclub.netI try to keep up with my voicemail.  The Club’s website Machine Dating Information form is NOT a means of requesting Dating services; this is an important anonymous means of the Club building up a database of machine serial numbers for providing Dating assistance, where there are gaps in the MZ factory data held by the Club.

Q  What Dating services does the Club provide?

A  Typically we provide Dating services to support an application to the DVLA for an age-related registration mark.  Sometimes we support those wishing to re-assign an original registration mark, when a machine is no longer held on DVLA records.  On rare occasions we have assisted in registering Reconstructed Classics in these special circumstances.

Q  How much will the Club’s Dating services cost me?

A  The Club’s Dating services are free to everyone.

There is however the potential for expenses incurred during any travel incurred by the Club Officer or Representative, when he/she attends to inspect a machine.  Any travel expenses must be paid directly to the inspecting Officer/Representative at the time of the inspection.  Failure to pay any expense claim, will result in the Dating Certificate being withheld, until the debt is settled.  The Club recommends that the Officer/Representative charges 60 pence per mile travelled.  Should the machine owner be able to transport the machine to the Officer/Representative then no travel expenses will be due.

The Dating Officer is obliged to assist MZRC Members and non-members alike.

This however does not extend to other Club Officers and Representatives who might act as machine dating inspectors.  Whether or not such Officers/Representatives become involved where a non-member is requesting assistance is entirely up to them.  This does NOT however mean that such Officers/Representatives would not and have not helped in the past (as they have), but there is NO OBLIGATION for them to do so.

The crux of this is that for inspection, the distance travelled/travel expenses incurred for non-members MAY be more.

Q  How long does the Dating process take?

A  The Club recommends that machine owners allow for a nominal three months to get a Dating Certificate.  On rare occasions, it has taken longer, but it can be a lot quicker.  The time for the dating process is dependent on factors such as:

  • time of year (more requests come through during the riding season);
  • natural variation in the number of machines for sale;
  • the complexity of an individual case;
  • the geographical location of a machine for inspection;
  • the personal circumstances of Club Officers/Representatives at any given time (all Officers/Representatives are unpaid volunteers).

Q  What is the Dating process?

  1. The enquirer contacts the DVLA to check if the Agency already has a record of the bike in question.
  2. If still necessary, the enquirer then contacts the Club’s Classics and DVLA Machine Dating Officer (the Dating Officer);
  3. The Dating Officer makes preliminary checks about the bike in question (frame number etc.).
  4. If still necessary, the Dating Officer contacts the nearest available Club Officer/Representative to arrange an inspection.
  5. The inspection takes place and any expenses due are paid.
  6. The Club Officer/Representative provides a written inspection report to the Dating Officer.
  7. The Dating Officer sends the Dating Certificate to the enquirer (Dating Officer retains the certificate where the DVLA V765 form applies).
  8. The enquirer fills out the DVLA form V55/5 (and V765 as well as all supporting information if necessary).
  9. The enquirer sends the document pack, including any fees, to the DVLA using the Dating Certificate as supporting evidence (where the V765 form applies, the enquirer sends the document pack to the Dating Officer).
  10. Where the V765 form applies, it is signed and stamped by the Dating Officer.
  11. The Dating Officer sends the endorsed V765 document pack to the DVLA.
  12. The DVLA issues the V5 document.

Q  How long is the Dating certificate valid for?

The DVLA have indicated that Dating certificates are valid for one year from the date of issue.

Q  When can I change my bike over to Historic Vehicle classification?

Historic Vehicle classification is available from the 1st April of the year when the bike becomes 41 years old.

Ride Safe,
MZRC Classics.