Higher plants possess a large number of kinesins, but lack the minus-end directed dynein motors. However, the kinesin class XIV has strongly expanded, and minus-end directed motors from this class may have taken over functions of cytoplasmic dyneins. In this study, we address the functional aspects of a novel rice homologue of the Arabidopsis class-XIV kinesins ATK1 and ATK5. Since a loss-of-function rice mutant of this kinesin is not viable, the function was studied in tobacco BY-2 as heterologous system. OsDLK-GFP stably expressed in BY-2 cells decorates cortical microtubules, but also can shift into the nucleus of interphase cells. Because of this peculiar localisation, we coined the name Dual Localisation Kinesin (DLK). The nuclear import of this protein is strongly and reversibly promoted in response to cold. During mitosis, OsDLK is repartitioned between spindle and phragmoplast. Motility assays in vitro using show that OsDLK can convey mutual sliding of microtubules and moves at a velocity comparable to other class-XIV kinesins. When tobacco cells overexpressing OsDLK are synchronised, they exhibit a delayed entry into metaphase, while the later phases of mitosis are accelerated. ... mehrThe data are discussed in relation to additional functions of this kinesin type, beyond their transport along microtubules.