n. A moped or scooter that does not require the rider to have a license, and so can be used by a person who has a suspended license due to a drunk driving conviction.
Also Seen As
Cyclists aren't the only ones slowing down cars along rural roads with 45 mph limits. "Liquor-cycles," those two-wheelers that don't require drivers' licenses, also encourage motorists to dart in and out to pass.
—Gerald McLin, “DWIs aren't only problem these highway users cause,” Charlotte Observer, August 19, 2008
North Carolina and South Carolina are among a few states that have a darker side to scootering: Motorists who lose their licenses for driving under the influence can drive the under-50cc bikes license-free. "Liquor-cycles," as they're known, aren't regulated and don't require any license, insurance or helmet.

And DUI drivers seem to know it. "That's a large part of the 50cc market," said Charlotte, N.C., Honda General Manager Steve Negra, who doesn't market the law. "It's a fact of life."
—Maria Recio, “Scooters riding on wave of popularity,” Centre Daily Times, September 02, 2007
2004 (earliest)
When it comes to engine capacity, there are two divergent trends in the scooter industry. Scooters with 50cc engines account for 50 percent of national gross sales. This is credited to states regulating 50cc-and-under scooters in different ways. Some states don't require you to register the vehicle or have a driver's license (a common sight in such states is called a "liquorcycle"—a scooter ridden by a person who has lost his or her license after a DUI conviction). Other states regulate the smaller models as mopeds, while some classify them as motorcycles.
—Shay Moftakhar, “The new $cooter market,” Dealernews, March 01, 2004
This term was spied, with thanks, by Word Spy reader "Beruang."