Report: Germans talking about huge noise crackdown


Just ahead of our annual collection of stories regarding Canadian municipal crackdowns on motorcycle noise, we’ve seen German authorities already starting this process over in the EU. This time, they’ve come up with some especially draconian suggestions to fight loud pipes.

The root problem is the same we’ve always seen when the issue comes up in Canada: motorcycles, usually with modified exhausts, are making a racket and disturbing the peace and quiet of the average local citizen. It’s almost always an urban issue, and cities have tried everything from stepping up police response to noise cameras (like speed cameras, but with microphones) to outright banning of bikes.

None of it’s worked, except the banning—the same municipalities are often back at the drawing board, year after year to deal with the issue, as riders figure out how to beat the noise tickets in court.

It seems the Germans have noticed that, which is why Visordown reports one of the suggestions over in Europe is to implement a partial motorcycle ban. Along with the other usual suggestions that tend to result in thrown-out tickets, the Germans are looking at banning motorcycles from certain areas on weekends and holidays. They’re also looking at not just a ban on aftermarket exhausts, but even a forced re-tune of factory pipes to lower noise output.

Will it happen? Who knows, and from most Canadians’ perspective, who cares? Here’s why you should care, though: it’s just one more example of the lengths that officials are willing to go to, to fight loud pipes. Let’s hope Canadian authorities don’t get any ideas from this initiative.


  1. Well, personally, I’m sick of extremely loud vehicles disturbing my enjoyment of my home. Among motorcycles, cruisers (i.e. Harleys) are the worst and most common offenders, although there is a twit with a 250 with an extremely loud exhaust in my area. There are also heavy trucks, pickups, muscle cars and ricers.

    But loud motorcycles stand out to the general public, who often aren’t that keen on motorcycles in the first place.

    And yes, if the governments keep passing laws that can’t be enforced, and/or the courts keep throwing out tickets issued for noise, the next step can be banning motorcycles altogether.

    I remember 9 years ago being in Quebec’s old city, in the park near the Chateau Frontenac, enjoying watching a busker with my girlfriend at the time. Motorcycles are banned from Quebec’s old city, with very clear and prominent signs advising of this. Despite that, while watching the show, a small group of idiots with extremely loud pipes on their Harley’s rode past us, effectively drowning out everything else for a minute or so. Everyone in the crowd was shooting daggers from their eyes at the riders.

    I’ve heard all the excused and justifications for running loud pipes, and as far as I’m concerned they’re all just rationalizationd for making a lot of noise to get attention. Grow the F up, morons!

    And yes, as in Germany, when bikes get his much attention for the noise they make, law-makers will even start looking at stock motorcycles, which (mostly) really aren’t very loud, in an over-reaction. Or maybe we’ll laws (as have been attempted elsewhere) requiring running only OEM pipes with EPA approval.

    • It’s pretty bad where I live. The ferry to NBs’s best motorcycle road is next-door, and every single pavement pirate always feels the need to rev their V-twin like crazy when they disembark.

      • Zac, did you know the ferry was there before you moved in? Reminds me of the people that moved out into country near the empty curvy roads that I’ve been riding for decades, then immediately call up their representatives and complain about speed limits and loud vehicles. It would help for these people to learn what many immigrants learned a long time ago – try adapt to the surroundings you’ve chosen to integrate with rather than try to change the environment to suit your selfish purposes 🙂

        • Hahahhahaha Rui, of course. I ride there myself all the time. But the difference is, I don’t blat my exhaust like a big fat hairy douche as soon as I get off the ferry.

            • BAHAHAHAHAHAH I wasn’t referring to you, lol–I probably have about 50 lbs on ya anyway, so I couldn’t cast stones. That’s the stereotype of who’s ripping up and down the streets here tho. The absolute worst are the open-piped quads, but there aren’t many of them around.

        • rui, where have you been hiding ?
          Living beside a ferry terminal is not the same as moving in beside a pre-existing airport or a railroad track. There is a realistic expectation of proper, unentitled behavior.
          Immigrants learned to adapt, seriously ? Immigrants have been changing the environment (right or wrong) for their selfish purposes since the first ships arrived.

          • This place is dead TK so I rarely check in! But this subject sounds like a good old fashioned CMG debate, so to that let me say shaddap you manjiacake face! 😉

  2. I’ve ridden in an area near Munich that bans bikes on the weekends and the Hahntennjoch Pass in Austria closed several times last year for all traffic in protest of all the traffic- mostly motorcycles. I get it, the sheer number of motorcycles in these areas can seem totally over the top for the locals at times. Loud pipes or not, a stock motorcycle is usually louder than your average car.

  3. Here’s why you should care, though: it’s just one more example of the lengths that officials are willing to go to, to fight loud pipes. Let’s hope Canadian authorities don’t get any ideas from this initiative.

    i take it from this statement you are condoning loud pipes and as such are putting Canadian Authorities into a position where there is no alternative other than to ban motorcycles in certain areas. But I guess by the time authorities get to doing anything about the noise issue gas engines will be banned and there won’t be any problem anyway!!

    The amount of noise that some of these bikes produce is absurd and they should be put off the road on the spot, the fact that they try to make them as loud as possible is a joke.

    • All loud pipes and exhaust noises are artificial in that companies purposely build them for that ‘classic’ macho sound. I guess life would suck for those people who have disruptive and even harmful-to-your-eardrum vehicles if it was taken away, they wouldn’t be able to forcefully grab people’s attention. Says something about a person’s insecurity that they need to force their shitty sounds into stranger’s eardrums to make themselves feel strong and secure, the poor babies.

      Bring on the future of electric!

    • Grant, if this is what you think we’re saying, you obviously haven’t spent much time around here at all. CMG has never been a proponent of loud pipes–but we have also, for obvious reasons, never been a proponent of banning motorcycles.

      • Zac, I have ” spent some time around CMG ” and have read articles in the past regarding noise, some of which I have just re-read.

        I can agree that CMG has never been a proponent of loud pipes ,but I would have to say the articles don’t exactly put forward a strong position of anti loud pipes either.Statements like the one I mentioned earlier and this one –
        Every spring, it seems, Canadian municipalities are falling over themselves in a rush to bring out bylaws against loud exhausts
        aren’t exactly putting up a strong stance against loud pipes.

        Why not be a voice for the majority of motorcycle riders and let it be known that loud pipes have to go ,so that motorcycle bans aren’t even a consideration.

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