Motorcycles aren’t the domain of Hells Angels (or sufferers of a mid-life crisis) anymore. They are fuel efficient and a great way of beating the early morning traffic blues, not to mention considerably cheaper than cars.
But how does one go about choosing the right bike for your lifestyle?
- Start with your experience level.
Are you a beginner or a veteran? If you are a novice, aim for a standard or “naked” model. These put the rider in the upright position and are easy to ride and maneuver. They don’t have much wind protection, so can be a little tiring at speed.
- How are you going to use your bike?
If you are a daily commuter (and just want to occasionally have some fun on the weekend), the standard is great. If, however, you are a leisure driver, you might enjoy a cruiser more. (Think Harley Davidson). These bikes put you in a relaxed, reclined position and aren’t that easy to steer, but very comfortable for long rides. They also allow you to put your foot on the ground, which is generally more reassuring for first time riders. If you are keen to take the bike off road on occasion, you might want to browse Adventure Touring bikes. They place the driver upright and can handle whatever road condition you throw at it.
- Are you in it for the long haul?
Touring bikes are pretty amazing to behold…but not for everyone. These bikes are designed for epic, cross-country trips and come equipped with sound and entertainment systems, impressive long-haul fuel tanks and luggage capacity. However, they cost about as much as cars and are extremely heavy. But if you are keen on exploring the country in comfort, it’s the way to go.
- Don’t buy with your ego.
A sports bike is a version of the competitive racing bikes you’ll see on TV, which is why they are so popular. The rider leans forward and – you guessed it – they are built for speed, not comfort. Although they are easy to maneuver, if you are a beginner, bear in mind these bikes will go from 0 to a 100 faster than you can say “I’m in traction for three weeks!”
Like with any vehicle, there are plenty of choices out there for aspiring motorcyclists. It’s important to buy one that is right for your experience level and lifestyle. Chat to your local dealer and do research before picking a style. It could save you a lot of trouble down the line.