Before you all get your panties in a bunch, I would like to point out a couple of things. I grew up with a system (in Europe) where it was 14-yo-: 50cc; 16-y-o: 125cc; 18-y-o: anything you want. The proposed directive would raise it to 19: maybe it will go through, maybe not, but I doubt that this will cause a major setback for the industry, since it would not be a substantial change from present rules. Consider this: MOst of my friends dreamed of bikes and a year's delay would just mean that they would wait and then buy at 19. The bike culture is different there: just look at a bike parking lot in any major city: I live in LA and nowhere in LA I ever see the number of bikes one sees in an average Italian city, except for weekends at the Rock Store, I guess. Also, if any of you has ever driven in Europe, you would know how truly dangerous it can be (I mean actual driving yourself, not seeing it from the bus). The idea that a MSF-type course can prepare you for that is ridiculous. The Dutch test actually seems just slightly tougher than the one in California, where we have to do some maneuvers in the parking lot. I wish they had a high-speed braking test here, BTW. None of this matters to the US, anyway: none of those measures has a snowball's chance in hell of being introduced here and, more importantly, being passed, IMHO. The question to ask is why exactly changing the test would cost someone 500 *additional* pounds? At Friday's rate that's about an additional $945: what do they pay DMV examiners in the UK and can I get that job?