Looking for the Right Motorbike

Ducati Panigale V4R

How do you find the top motorbike for you? Let’s look at Ducati, they have a range of bikes such as an off-roader called the Scrambler, a racing bike, otherwise known as the Panigale V4R and so on. Your motorbike purchase is dependent on where you wish to drive it and it’s a good idea to look at the specialist brand which you like.

How does the power compare?

When it comes to learner bikes, sports bikes or the off-road variety it can vary between 250 and 400cc. The more retro bikes have a better range – between 600 and 900cc. There are even bikes which have a massive 1000cc or more known as superbikes.

It’s no good investing in a superbike expecting to be able to ride it when you have little experience. A mid-range sports bike may seem dull, but it’s a good place to start.

To give you more details about these bike types…

A beginner bike has an engine size that isn’t too daunting and is also easy to repair.

Retro bikes seldom have items like windshields but also have more power, either two or three cylinders. You might possibly consider them all-rounders.

Cruiser Style Bike

The adventure style motorbike can handle everything from mud to gravel. Sports touring is a subdivision of these types of bikes.

The cruiser has a striking design with a large engine and huge handlebars. If you wish to see the US coast-to-coast then the cruiser is the way to go.

The superbike is more dependent on aerodynamics to keep it on the road. Though as said above it’s daunting, there are still superbikes with less than 1000cc which are still thrilling to drive.

New Types of Bike:

Honda MiniMoto

There are a number of new types which the general public might not immediately call motorbikes such as the supermoto, the minimoto and the electric motorbike. These may cause you some difficulty: the minimoto is not suitable for interstate roads for instance and electric motorbikes are difficult to recharge when far from home. But they have the plus point of being new and exciting.

Limited Editions:

Ariel Ace Iron Horse

The more expensive bikes tend to be limited editions, and many are only available unofficially.

There are lightweight versions such as Ariel Ace Iron Horse, thanks to its skeletal look. It may seem like a sportbike but it’s so much more.

Although older bikers remember Marlon Brando or James Dean these names aren’t going to cut it for the early twenties market. So, Harley-Davidson (the cruiser type referred to above) are going for unique names such as Neiman Marcus Limited Editions.

Repair:

When it comes to maintenance motorcycle engines tend to be more specialized than car engines. In terms of repair with more select models you may be better off just buying a new bike. That’s the thing with niches though.

For example, the Ducati Panigale V4 is made of exotic material such as carbon fiber and weighs less than 200Kg. So you’re not running down to the parts store for a replacement to bolt in.

There’s a few bikes out there with carbon fiber such as the Suzuki AEM which is great at handling and is comfortable, but is it worth the price? It’s all down to you.

Inside the Motorbike Garage

For those who prefer the motorbike to the car what are options when it comes to improvement?

It depends on if you wish to restore the bike or start a new trend. With special parts and kits available including luggage racks, tool bags, fenders and crash bars amongst other items you can customize the bike for your needs.

Before customizing a new bike, be aware that it will violate the factory warranty. Most bike enthusiasts are more concerned with customizing than factory warranties, but it’s worth mentioning.

Possibly there is too much emphasis on restoring the bike to factory settings. Instead of completely restoring the bike, it may only need to look right. In this case you can give it more power and reliability.

Before taking your bike anywhere make sure the shop can deal with your specific make; some brands are obscure (there are more brands of motorcycle than automobile). Some dealers specialise in only one make, if you are looking to fix a rare Kawaski for instance it makes sense to go to someone who specializes in only that type of bike.

The aftermarket refers to the market for the repair or enhancement of a product. The improvements depend on whether you are dealing with a dirt bike or one more designed for the road. Frames may need to be modified, engines to be rebuilt. Does your bike require the latest top of the range wheels? It will certainly help it in its performance.

You may be looking at purchasing a hand-built motorbike from a specific factory rather than a more well-known make. The tricky area is that your hands will be tied if and when it breaks down, the person best qualified to fix it will be the original manufacturer.

If you are looking to do your own repair job on the motorbike it might help browsing picture sites such as Pinterest and Instagram to see what other people are doing, what works and what may be a mistake. This is particularly true of color choice. Most people like a black or strong color such as red, but if you see a cooler color you’d prefer out there, maybe you can give your bike a respray? You could also change the color of the seating or the frame, etc. You are hampered only by the size of the vehicle.

The motor trike is a recent invention, although considered as cool as a motorbike, many go up to a seventh gear and there are better luggage options than a regular bike. Other areas of improvement are better comfort and more seating – two seater and three seater varieties are available, also they have a more centralized light than a motorbike. Well-known brands, for example, Harley Davison have created versions of motor trikes and customization is possible.

Other items you can obtain from a motorbike shop include Davida bowl-shaped helmets, 60s and 70s helmets, motorbike gloves and transfers to individualize your particular runabout.

Whether you are on a motorbike or motortrike you will be more exposed than you would be in a car so be careful out there. But it’s all part of the attraction of being a biker.