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Buying Guidelines for Bikes

Updated on : Oct 16, 2023 12:51 PM
Buying Guidelines for Bikes


In the present day, motorbikes are not a means of necessity but a luxury or just plain ol’ way of convenience. The enthrallment of buying your first set of gears can definitely be head spinning. You may be one of them who wants to swing leg over, turn that accelerator and feel the breeze of freedom flowing through your hair locks. But just hold your metal horses, before you spend your money on machine, here are few critical issues that you need to resolve.

Don’t Overestimate Your Ability

One common mistake newbies make is to spend on a bike with far more performance capability than they can handle. Riding is fun, no doubt, but can turn lethal if done wrong. Therefore, before buying a bike access your capability and skills and if you are a novice then learn how to ride. Stay away from anything with an engine larger than 600cc; when you learn to ride on a slower bike, you gain more confidence and become a better rider. After you have refined your skills, you can readily upgrade to a faster bike.

Consider Your Needs for Riding

Will you be riding long distance? In lots of traffic? Motorbikes comes in lots of sizes and shapes, so consider your need before picking one. If you don’t consider yourself as race biker and you will be comfortable with something that you want to ride till office, then go for a traditional bike, People who enjoy the touring lifestyle tend to be older and are in no hurry to watch the scenery go by on all sides, then logical option is touring bike; if you have daily long distance commute and want to add some adventure to it then land-cruiser is your machine.

Choose a Bike That Suits You

This point sounds a little ridiculous at first but there are many bikes in dramatically different shapes and sizes, and so does human body. If you cannot put both feet flat on the ground when the bike is upright, it means the bike is too tall for you. Try a bike for size and if necessary, take it for a spin. You will feel that the ergonomic experience is different for various bikes. For daily commute, a standard and traditional bike should be given a chance. These will look familiar, but thanks to electric starters, fuel injection and disc brakes for bringing in more comfort. For long distance travel, a cruiser is the one to be opted for, with more style. If you want a basic commuter but have to track the roads with just trails, then you should look out for a dual-purpose bike; a standard bike with knobby tires and extra ground clearance.

Consider a Long-term Budget

When planning to buy a motorcycle, think about all the other expenses associated with riding which is an inevitable add-on. Like, before the purchase check-out some good insurance rates with several carriers; the higher the deductible, the lower the premium. Also, don’t forget to account for the cost of routine maintenance which can vary differently depending upon the make and type of motorcycle. You will also need to allot some extra budget for safety gear like helmet, gloves, jackets and knee pads. Safety First.

Think Before You Purchase, No Rush

Wish of being a first time motorcycle owner can be exciting, but don’t get carried away in heat of the moment. If you see a bike and it’s a love-at-first-sight, do ensure that you will enjoy owning it after the initial thrill wears off. Always read about the model you are planning to buy and also consider other factors before purchasing. Many a times, you don’t regret this forethought.

Buy an Exciting Riding Machine

Nowadays, bike is never bought because it is useful, rather bikes are often purchased out of passion. Though there are many practical issues to consider, still choose a machine that you are excited about. Experienced riders, many a times, suggest you to buy a sensible first bike, and if you have found a motorcycle that suits all your criteria then you have chosen wisely.

Buying a Used Bike

  • While you are interested in buying a used bike from a dealer or individual, always compare the odometer reading with the present condition of bike. Also, ask for the maintenance and service receipts and records.
  • A cracked and faded seat tells you that it has seen a hard life and been through much road experience.
  • Inspect the engine and transmission cases for oil leakage, seepage and weeping.
  • Disc brakes should be smooth, clean and not blue – a sign of overheating brakes. In such case, check the tires for mishandling.
  • The bike should be easy to start and may emit smoke on a cold startup. If it is hard to start or exhausts cloud of smoke – especially blue smoke then beware.

These are few issues that one needs to deal with before buying a machine for style. All the factors mentioned above are from safety point of view as well, because life cannot be compromised for enjoyment’s sake. So make a smart choice and buy your suitor.

Types of Motorbikes

There are six main categories of motorbikes, viz; standard, sports, cruiser, touring, dual-purpose and off-road (dirt bikes).


Street motorcycles are the ones designed to run on paved roads. The engine capacity generally is 125cc and above, with treads patterns on the tires. Most of these bikes can speed up to 160km/hr or to the excess of 201km/hr.

  1. Standard – These motorbikes are pretty much like barebones, basic street bikes. They are also known as naked bikes or Standard ones usually offer all the basic needs for a novice rider. They have upright riding positions, as the handlebars are high enough not to force the rider to reach forward, placing the shoulders right in alignent with the hips; also the foot pegs are below the rider. These bikes are relatively affordable and their versatile makes them popular among the novice college crowd.
  1. Cruiser – They are usually associated with high-profile brands like Harley Davidson and Royal Enfield. They are designed for easy cruising, with low seat bar and out-stretched arms for reaching the handlebars. They are known for being little difficult than standard bikes so these are suitable for experienced riders only.
  1. Sports Bike – Also known as “crotch rockets”, they are bikes with top speed, acceleration, braking, handling and grip over the paved roads. The fuel consumption of these bikes is more than the rest hence they are not very eco-friendly. These bikes are suitable for racers and adrenaline junkies.
  1. Touring – Touring motorbikes are designed especially to cover long distances. They have long displacement engines, large-capacity tanks for covering long distance without a fill-up, with accessories like fairings and windscreens that protect and cut on aerodynamic drag. They have a relaxed, upright seating position.
  1. Sports Touring – It is a combination of both sports and touring motorbikes. It has good luggage capacity and comfortable passenger seating. These bikes are lighter in weight compared to tourers and racier engines, brakes and suspension give them an edge while aggressively riding on curvy canyon roads.
  1. Dual-sport – These bikes are designed for people who want the best of both the worlds: to have on-road safety features like street motorbikes but also be able to take your bikes off the road for some adventure. Dual-sport bikes usually look like off-roaders, but they are equipped with headlights, horn, side-view mirrors and turn signals that make them road legal. Like sports bike, they have fiberglass shells on bikes for aerodynamic support, fairings and protection for the rider against engine block and moving parts. This is your perfect match if you want a mix of both on- and off-road experience.
  1. Scooters – Scooter engines are smaller than the other bikes’ i.e. 50-850cc. They have all-enclosing body framework and give better fuel efficiency, making them cleaner and quieter motorcycles. Scooters usually have an engine as a part of the swing arm, so that their engines can move up and down with the suspension.


Off-roaders are designed to give you more off-road experience on the unpaved streets. This includes activities like recreational off-road trail riding, motocross competitive racing and trials competitions.

Other Related Buying Guides

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