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Colorado does not issue separate motorcycle licenses―rather, they issue an endorsement to add to your existing CO driver's license. There are two types of motorcycle endorsements in Colorado: An “M" endorsement allows you to ride any type of motorcycle, while a “3" endorsement allows you to ride motorcycles with 3 wheels only.
Note: While low-power scooters―defined as being self-propelled vehicles without a manual clutch―are not categorized as motorcycles, you are required to have a valid Colorado driver's license to operate one. Learn more on our Colorado Scooters and Mopeds page.
If you have just moved to Colorado, you will need to trade in your out-of-state motorcycle permit or license for a Colorado version.
Transferring an Out-of-State Permit
If you currently have a motorcycle permit, visit your local CO DMV office with:
- Your out-of-state permit. You will need to surrender it to the CO DMV.
- If under 18 years old, submit an Affidavit of Liability and Guardianship (Form DR 2460). It must be signed by your parent or guardian.
- Provide primary identification, proof of lawful presence and your Social Security number.
- Provide proof of your new Colorado residency.
- Payment to cover the $9 permit fee (or $25 license fee and $2 motorcycle endorsement fee if you pass a road test―see below). Cash or check only. CO driver license offices do not accept credit or debit cards.
NOTE: If you are a minor and hold an out-of-state motorcycle permit, you may be allowed to take the Colorado tests to get your motorcycle endorsement without first having to get a Colorado permit. If you are given this option and do not pass the test, you will then be given a Colorado motorcycle permit and will have to go through the standard Colorado graduated licensing process.
Transferring an Out-of-State License
To transfer your driver's license, follow the same steps listed above for transferring a permit, including payment for the $25 license fee and the $2 motorcycle endorsement.
A permit is recommended for all Colorado motorcyclists, and required for all applicants under 18 years old. To obtain your permit, go to your local Colorado DMV office and:
- Submit proof of identity, age, and residency.
- Pass the written motorcycle test.
- Pay the $9 permit fee.
There are additional requirements for applicants under 18 years old:
- You must submit an Affidavit of Liability and Guardianship (Form DR 2460) signed by your parent or guardian.
- Applicants between 15 and 16 years of age must also complete a Motorcycle Operator Skills Training (MOST) program and bring proof of completion to the DMV.
- You are required to hold your permit for at least 12 months before you can become eligible to obtain a motorcycle endorsement.
- You may only ride under the supervision of an adult 21 years old or older who also holds a Colorado motorcycle-endorsed driver's license.
- If that adult is not your MOST instructor or your parent/guardian, they must have your parent/guardian's permission.
- If you are under 16 years old, you may only ride under the direct supervision of your MSF motorcycle instructor.
In Colorado, you must be at least 16 years old before you can add the M endorsement to your CO driver's license. If you're under 18 years old, you must also have held a motorcycle instruction permit for 12 months.
To apply for your motorcycle endorsement, visit your local Colorado DMV office and:
- Pass the written exam (if you did not get a motorcycle permit) and vision test. If you do not already have a Colorado driver’s license, you will also need to pass the basic written test requirements and show proof of identity.
- Pass the on-cycle driving test. You can do this either at the DMV, or beforehand with a certified third-party tester and bring your receipt to the DMV for your written exam. If you are taking your test at the DMV, schedule an appointment online.
- Pay the $25 fee for a new license and $2 for the M endorsement ( $15.50 for a CDL and then an additional $2 for the motorcycle endorsement).
NOTE: If you complete a Motorcycle Safety Foundation training course, you are exempt from taking the written and driving exams at the DMV. Submit your MSF certification card, and pay the appropriate licensing fee for your new license.
With your Class M endorsement, you may ride both a standard motorcycle and a three-wheeled motorcycle.
Motorcycles with 3 wheels (or trikes) are considered a separate class of motorcycles in Colorado. With a Class 3 endorsement, you may only ride a trike―not a standard motorcycle. A Class M endorsement allows you to ride either.
The process and the fees for obtaining a permit and/or license for a Class 3 endorsement are the same as they are for Class M, with one noticeable difference: The Motorcycle Safety Course that allows you to skip taking the on-bike and written tests is replaced by a Sidecar/Trike Education Program (S/TEP). In other words, S/TEP is the three-wheeled motorcycle equivalent of an MSF course.Compare Motorcycle Insurance Rates in 3 Steps
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