ULEZ is coming to London (UK) on 8th April 2019 and many older motorcycles will automatically be charged £12.50 per day to enter the ULEZ zone. All is not lost though as a new testing centre has been approved by TfL and if your older machine passes their test then it will be exempt from paying the charge.
If your Triumph has a Historic Vehicle Tax class then you already will be exempt, and if it was registered before 1st January 1973 then it will be exempt regardless of its Vehicle Tax class. Also exempt are all those motorcycles that were manufactured to the Euro3 emissions criteria which came into force in July 2007 for new motorcycles but had been planned for by manufacturers since 2002. However that leaves a lot of machines (built from 1979 to 2007) that are not automatically exempt.
The critical measure for ULEZ exemption is the motorcycle's Nitrogen Oxide (NOx) emissions, which must be equal to or less than 0.15 grammes per kilometre. If an owner can provide TfL (Transport for London) with proof their motorcycle complies with these measures, they will be exempt from the charge.
Many non-Euro3 motorcycles actually emit very low levels of NOx but as manufacturers didn't start testing until 2001 (when it was absolutely necessary) it is very difficult for owners to find out if their machine is eligible for exemption. However, a branch new testing facility at Riverbank Motorcycles, Hackney Wick, has been approved by TfL to help owners prove their machine meets the ULEZ criteria.
The strict test measures exhaust gas at idle, acceleration, and deceleration and an average is taken. The result is either a Pass or a Fail (there is no in between). If the bike passes then the results will be uploaded onto the TfL database which will classify it as exempt from ULEZ. Even if your motorcycle fails it may only need a small adjustment or a bit of maintenance to get it to pass. There will be some machines that won't pass no matter what you do though.
Neil Freeman or Riverbank Motorcycles said that "in the majority of cases, motorbikes that aren't manufactured to Euro3 standards can actually be set up so that the NOx emissions will comply with TfL standards."
Currently, Riverbank Motorcycles is the only TfL approved facility for testing ULEZ compliance. They will be accepting appointments from early April 2019 and bookings are going to be available very soon. The test will cost £175 - which is the equivalent of just 14 days riding in the ULEZ zone.