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Beginner Biker: Things to consider when choosing your first motorcycle

You’re off to buy your first motorcycle. You’re excited, yet at the same time it can feel like an intimidating process. Perhaps you’re heading to a showroom, with your sights set high on a fully warranted, factory fresh brand new bike or you’re going for a used bike which can be a potential minefield. 


It’s likely you will trawl through many styles and makes of bikes, comparing a huge range of prices and features, leaving yourself feeling a little confused and unsure. To help, we have put together a roundup of the three most important things to consider when choosing your first motorcycle.

New or used?

As a new rider, it’s likely you will scuff or scratch your bike at some point over the next year or so, as you get to grips with riding on your own. It isn’t anything you should be scared of, it is just something to factor when it comes to choosing between a new or used bike.

A second-hand bike can be just as good as a brand new one and is perhaps the better choice for those who have just started riding. They are also likely to hold their value compared to one that has only just come off the forecourt. A second hand bike can put you in a decent position when it comes to gaining a year of riding experience, along with decent insurance prices and fuel costs.

Honda and Suzuki motorcycles hold their resale value well and are brands that remain popular for many years. A common first motorcycle to consider is the Honda CB125.

Engine Size

If you have completed your CBT, you can ride a moped or motorcycle that is up to 50cc if aged 16 and up to 125cc for those of you aged 17 and above. This is your limit until you do any further training.

So which size engine should you choose?

A 125cc engine offers good fuel economy but a 50cc will give you a phenomenal return on your fuel, providing you with weeks of road time from just one single tank. A smaller engine will mean smaller insurance costs too and is likely to bring your premiums down – which for a new rider, is great. Comparison websites are the best place to start when it comes to finding out which type is best for you.

It will be hard to find an expensive 50cc motorcycle, whereas for a 125cc there is a much bigger range to choose from meaning a real variety in prices.

A smaller engine will mean less power, therefore, a 50cc won’t get you anywhere fast whereas 125cc will be faster. In some cases, this can be the safer option though, especially if you are riding on a lot of A roads. Sitting at 40mph on a 60mph road isn’t the best of choices so think about where you are going to be riding the most.

What type of bike suits you best

When it comes to choosing your bike, take into account your body type before spending your hard earned cash. If you are fairly tall you will want to consider a a bike that has a high saddle height. There’s nothing worse than being hunched up on bike and it will feel very uncomfortable for new riders.

Take some time to visit bikes in person, get on and see how they feel and perhaps take them for a test ride if possible. It’s important you find a design that suits you.

There are many different things to consider when getting your first motorcycle, so do your research, make sure you know exactly what you want and don’t make and rash decisions. It’s a good idea to read around first – there are plenty of blogs and forums out there – and don’t be afraid to ask the experts at the showrooms you visit any questions.

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