Hey guys, I just recently moved and I now live about 10 minutes from my work. Im looking into buying a motorcycle for commuting to save on gas. I have owned sportbikes in the past so im not new to motorcycles, im either looking into a 600cc class sportbike or something like a honda vtx or yamaha raider.
I don't have as much experience on cruisers as I do sportbikes, i've ridden my father inlaws and a few of his freinds before and they are definitely more comfortable but I can find more sportbikes I like for quite a bit cheaper.
I definitely would like a japanese bike. I had a R6 back in 2000 and a gsxr 1000 in 2002 but im sure they have made big improvments since then. Any recomendations on which types to look at? Im looking between 2005-2008 year range for a sportbike and im just looking at all crusiers. Any imput is appreciated.
Why not go with the best of both worlds with the sport bike performance and look only with a more cruiser type feel. I have an 08 R1 no and am leaning this way as well. My commute is 65miles one way. All highway tho at odd hours. Check out newer Fz8 or older FZ6. I am not a fan of the naked bikes but they may catch your eye. I also have an FZ6R in the house Everyone that has been on that bike has fallen in love. ITs has the complete look of a sportbike just with a riding position abit more upright. It has the old R6 motor geared with a little more low end torque. Nice smooth power and great mpg's, really smooth riding, shifting bike that you can relax as the clutch and power isn't as harsh on you(like if you had an r6) if you are not paying attention. Its Kawasaki Twin is the Ninja 650R same exact idea as the FZ6R........... I am personally leaning towards upgrading my R1 to the new Kawasaki Ninja 1000. Its basically a ZX10 with torque in the low end, not so high redlines and an upright casual riding position.
If you were looking cruiser you can't pass up the new Yamaha Stryker..........Its absolutely sick looking, gets decent mpgs, and is priced exceptionally well.
Last edited by xstarrider; 12-30-2011 at 10:28 PM.
10 minutes from work is nothing. Are you going to need any storage space for work stuff (outside of a backpack)?
Have you ever considered looking into a supermotard (especially for such a short commute)? You could pick something like a drz-400 for around $3500 or less; or if you wanted more engine, you could also get into the KTM 625smc's for ~$4500.
Sumo's seem to always be overlooked when it comes to commuting bikes, but they are so much more fun than a sport bike or a cruiser on typical "commutes" - you typically will start taking the long way home to hit a set of stairs/hills/hips/etc
But if it is only between a sportbike and a cruiser, I always recommend the sportbike - being only my opinion, you just need to think about what you want the bike for (twisties vs. Gas savings). I like cruisers, but comparing a sportbike to a cruiser is like comparing an auto vs manual sportscar IMO.
Since it is such a short commute i'm really going to be picky with what I want. I just have never been a fan of the way the fz1 and 6 look. I really like the streetbike look. I do really like the way the sumo's look my only concern would be what it would cost to maintenance one. I dont know much about ktm but I know ducati can be pretty expensive bikes to service and it seems they need to be serviced more often but I could be misinformed.
The new Stryker is definitely nice but I think its a little more then I wanted to dish out at the moment. I will be looking more into the sumo bikes not. Ducati has always made some sweet looking bikes, ive just always been worried about the cost to maintain an italian made bike.
Well im hoping to save a little money, The truck im driving now is an f-250 diesel. I did have a little honda civic that I drove before we moved but I just recently sold it to get my wife new car for her and the baby.
You are not going to save any money on gas with a 10 minute commute. It will cost way more for the bike and insurance than the gas you will ever save for that short of a trip.
Not really the case. I have a 5-10 minute commute and either drive my F-250 while probably gets well under 10 MPG since it barely gets to temp or my '71 CB750. CB750 is so cheap to own and ride it's hardly worth considering the cost. $90/yr insurance, $1300 to buy it, and the 4.5 gal tank will last me 3+ weeks, mostly just to work. My truck will burn 35 gallons in 2 weeks. Ballpark numbers since I drive elsewhere and drive the truck more, but you get the idea. It's VERY easy to have a bike pay for itself in a year or two if the alternative is driving a truck.
Please purchase a proper Leo V and remove that giant zit pronto!
Carbon Fiber VALE Two Bros? how is that a giant zit? Came with the bike. Either way, it actually is coming off soon, and getting replaced with a Yosh R55 full, or possibly an Akropovic, haven't decided yet.
Last edited by benbuchholz; 01-04-2012 at 1:04 PM.
Oh, as for type of bike. I'd obviously go with an old sport bike. I think those new crotch rockets are uncomfortable and fugly (but fun, mind you). Cruisers handle terribly and feel awkward for me to ride with the often stretched out forward pegs and controls. The center of gravity is all off and you can't have any fun riding them. Hardly lean one at all and it feels like it's gonna fall over. Just my experience from riding a few crotch rockets and cruisers.
CB750 or similar old sport bike is the only way I'd go. I would love to have a 750 triple, if I were to ever get another street bike that would be it. Two strokes rock. For a while I did get into the dual sport thing. Those were fun. First I had a Kawasaki F11 250cc two stroke. That was fun, but low compression and slow, not like a two stroke dirt bike. Then I got a Yamaha XT 550 which was a fun bike. It was fast, light for the street and very easy on gas. Got rid of it because it was pretty heavy for off road. I wouldn't mind having another dual sport, but I'd want it to be very light and preferably two stroke. I'd want more of a street legal IT 465 type bike. I love my IT 465, was a sick bike. I've seen IT/YZ 465 bikes street legal with titles. I would be worried about sustained high speeds and cooling issues though. That bike did not have enough cooling for a huge two stroke motor.
If you're considering a new bike, I don't like anything on the market now. My rules for a bike are air cooled and kick start, if it doesn't have those I won't touch it.
Nice work on that Honda! That thing looks amazing!!!
Honestly, any of the Sportbikes are going to give you the time of your life. Suspension and brakes are pretty much the same across the entire line of Jap bikes. They're all going to be crazy fast, reliable, and virtually maintenance free. I've owned all of the major brands. They're all mind blowing.
A couple of years ago I bought an Aprilia RSV1000R, and became hooked on the V-Twin power. I tried to go back to a GSXR 600 after totaling the Aprilia, and I just wasn't loving it. I'm V-twin for life now. The sound and power delivery is just more fun. I'll probably hold on to my 999s for another year and hope for an 1199 Panigale to hit the used market, if that's even realistic.
Sinko I have never really been a fan of the honda's but that bike looks awesome. Is that a 600 or a 1000?
I really want to go with a sportbike again. I just dont think im ready to go to a cruiser yet. The only problem im having now is choosing what size motor to go with. As soon as I decide I want to stay with a 600 I find a 750 or 1000 for sale that catches my eye.
I love my yamaha R6 but second gear went out and I traded it for a 1000, definitely too different animals. I loved the power of the 1000 but I missed the manuverability of the R6. I sure I will love whatever I buy its just having so many choices.
I def enjoyed my r6 more although I had a chance to do "the dragon" and all the NC roads when I had the anniversary r1. That thing took more to manuever and to keep the front wheel down. But was more comfortable for longer rides and commuting.
Ive always thought about picking up a rat bike though for fun.
I don't know how you could find a newer sport bike ugly, especially the R6s. I think they don't need a vin number on a bike to give you am accurate quote. For ball park i have an 07 R6 and am 24, insurance is around $250 a year I think. My R6 below
This is all my opinion only, so please don't take offense. The only reason I'd get a sport bike is for the track. I don't think they're practical for road use. If you use them on the road to their full potential you probably won't be riding long. Also, I don't know if it's just the city I live in or what, but it seems like 90% of the guys I see on sport bikes are complete d-bags with mohawk helmets, or no helmets at all. I see some guys properly geared and seemingly experienced on sport bikes but not many. Sport bikes are a dime a dozen and I don't want to be associated with stereotype sport bike riders have developed. I swear, every time I go to pick up something from cycle gear I hear some guy bragging about how fast he went in a straight line. If I had to get a sport bike, I'd get an Aprilia, Ducati, etc to disassociate myself from the squids. Again, I know this isn't the case with you guys here, but it's what I see every day in the city. When I get old, I won't be getting a cruiser...it'll probably be something like a BMW GS Adventure.
All the supermoto guys I ride with have years of motorcycle experience under the belt. A lot of them have sport bikes too, and they all say they sit in the garage and collect dust, pointing out the supermoto's as being way more fun.
OP, if you ever have the opportunity to ride a KTM 690 SMC, take it, and you'll see what I'm talking about. The bike is an absolute blast to ride. I just got one, and love it. Also, KTM LC4 motors are damn reliable. Some member on SMJ put 70,000 miles on his LC4 KTM with no rebuild.
You mentioned the Raider in you first post, I have never ridden a sports bike, just a Raider and a HD Fatboy. The Fatboy handled and was much more comfortable to drive but the Raider would smoke it. They have pretty great styling and are not hard to ride but I dont think they will handle as well as a sport bike but you can get some vance and hines exhaust for one and it will sing, and if you get on it that 1800 v twin will take off. i personally would never own a sport bike unless i had a track to drive it on. they seems pretty useless on the street.
I think a lot of the new sport bikes are ugly. The GSXRs really went down hill I think across the entire line. The 2011's are pretty boring. The R1 looks horrible in my opinion. I don't know why anyone would want two 20 pound exhaust cans cluttering the tail of the bike. It looks like a touring bike. I do like the new 1 litre Ninjas, and the 600RRs still look good.
Agreed, I'd take the previous gen model GSX-R over the new one anyday. my buddy's got a 2007 GSX-R 750 and I love how those look. And that thing rides SO nice, I couldn't believe it when I rode it. Shifts so smooth. The new R6 models are still pretty badass, I think anyway. The R1's though...bleh.
Wow that Raider S looks awesome, Its the only cruiser that I think looks good enough that I would buy one. How do you like it compared to your HD? I just cant get past how much you would end up paying for a hd with the same specs and chrome as the Raider but maybe its just me. A lot of people I talk to say they handle really well and that an aftermarket seat like mustang or corbin would make it way more comfortable. It really is the only cruiser I would consider buying because of its looks. Im not a fan of any HD but thats just me.
Ben-I really do hate the rep these squid riders are giving streetbikers, those mohawk helmets look rediculous. I just dont know if I would be able to drop 6k on a bike that looks like a dirtbike, sorry not trying to be offensive. No doubt it looks like a fun bike but I just havent warmed up to the idea just yet. I will definitely look into them more though. What other manufactures would you suggest looking into?
. Ben-I really do hate the rep these squid riders are giving streetbikers, those mohawk helmets look rediculous. I just dont know if I would be able to drop 6k on a bike that looks like a dirtbike, sorry not trying to be offensive. No doubt it looks like a fun bike but I just havent warmed up to the idea just yet. I will definitely look into them more though. What other manufactures would you suggest looking into?
No offense taken. I personally think the look is part of the appeal. The look on people's face when a sportbike gets passed in the twisties by a "dirtbike" is appealing too. If the look takes precedence over versatility and usability on the street then you should probably stick with the typical sportbike.
I agree with what Evan said "For me, the only reason for a sport bike is to track it." A lot of guys that own supermoto's have sportbikes too -that are track use only. I'd like to get a sportbike someday to use on the track.
the HD handled better and felt more stable due to a lower center of gravity, it also had automatic turn signal cancellors so you dont drive down the road for miles with you blinker going off. im not saying the yamaha is a bad ride, just not as comfortable but it is def more built for performance. head to head drag race the raider would smoke it. the raiders not bad to ride though, i still have a blast on it. i dont own a harley, i just had to opportunity to spend a day cruising around on one. all my money goes toward the boat
Not for me. I mean I love the track too, but my commute is 50 miles each way, every day. You're not doing that for long without a bike that's comfortable at an 75-80mph pace, and some kind of fairing to hide behind for wind protection.
For me it's either sport or cruiser, and I'm just not at the point in my life yet for cruising. Sound and style is also a factor. I love being on a bike that turns heads, is a little less common, and sounds awesome.