You are shopping for your first motorcycle. What an exciting adventure! The first thing you’ll notice is that riding is a bit addictive. Buying bikes and riding gear is too. Hopefully your first bike will be the start of a long line of two wheeled trophies.
The second thing you’ll notice is that there can be a lot of peer pressure when you are shopping around. Many of your friends and even sales persons may try to encourage you to bypass the beginner bike and step right into the major leagues. That doesn’t work well in hockey and it sure can have its disadvantages riding. As the old saying goes “don’t bite off more than you can chew”.
In order to get a bike that suits you and matches your riding needs, you should make a list of why you want a bike. Please note “just because” is an acceptable answer. Do you need a vehicle to commute 5 km to work and back? Do you want to explore the local countryside? Maybe you want something to go on and off road or something that will keep strictly on the trails. Write down your priorities and go shopping.
The motorcycle shows were a great place to see and sit on a bunch of bikes all under the same roof. Unfortunately, Covid19 has caused their cancellation for 2021. Motorcycle dealerships are your next best option. Talk to the experienced sales people and provide them with your list of priorities.
Here is a list of considerations you may want to take into account;
- Proper ergonomics for your height and inseam length will trump colour and style.
- Insurance rates are better if you choose a smaller displacement motorcycle.
- Smaller displacement bikes may not have highway capabilities (priorities).
- Insurance rates are better if you take training.
- Insurance rates are generally better if you don’t choose a supersport bike as your first motorcycle.
- Bikes with an upright riding position with wider handlebars and footpegs directly under the seat are generally easier to handle.
- Fuel injected bikes are easier to start than carbureted bikes.
- Old vintage bikes are only cool if you have the mechanical skills to keep them running.
- New bikes with a warranty are best.
- A well cared for used bikes comes pretty darn close to a new bike.
Shopping for your first bike can be a little bit of a “Goldilocks” experience. This one’s too big and fast, this one’s too small and slow and this one’s just right! Have fun, enjoy the shopping experience and, most of all, enjoy your first motorcycle!