How Much Does a Motorcycle Cost? (Price To Own & Maintain)

Man Riding His Newly Bought Motorcycle

Learn how much does a motorcycle costs and what you’ll need to invest in getting the bike of your dreams, along with advice on saving money when buying a new or used bike.

Introduction If you’ve ever considered getting a motorcycle, you know that there are certain things you need to think about. One of the first things you’ll have to decide is what kind of bike you want. Which type of riding style will you prefer and which type of bike do you think you’d enjoy the most?

A motorcycle is an expensive piece of machinery. The average person will spend anywhere from $4,000 to $50,000 on the brand and model they choose.

Here is a quick guide to help you decide on what type of motorcycle you want to buy.

Street motorcycles 

These are designed for paved roads in urban areas. They have smooth tires with patterned threads, and their engines are generally between 250 cc and 400 cc. The speed can be anywhere from 100 km/h to 180 km/h.

Average Price: $5000-$20,000

Standard  

Naked bikes or roadsters are versatile, general-purpose street motorcycles for the urban rider. The riding position is generally upright, with footpegs below the handlebar, which places the shoulders above the hips naturally. The engine has a moderate power output, making the price generally affordable for beginner riders.

Average Price: $5000-$20,000

Muscle Bikes  

A muscle bike is a type of naked motorcycle that emphasizes engine power. A roadster is an example of a naked bike. Because they are versatile, they can be used for urban commuting, cruising, sports, and even long-distance travel. 

Average Price: $5000-$18000

Cruiser  

Cruisers include motorcycles manufactured by Harley-Davidson, Indian, and Excelsior-Henderson. They are inspired by American motorcycles from the 1930s to the early 1960s. They have a large-displacement V-twin engine that is designed for low-end torque and does not need frequent shifting, resulting in a relaxed ride. The cruiser is ideal for long motorcycle trips, as evidenced by the seating position: feedforward, hands relatively high, and an erect spine. Because of the low ground clearance, cruisers have poor cornering ability.

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Average Price: $4500-$20000

Choppers

Choppers are considered custom motorcycles. The typical design has raked-out forks, a small fuel tank, and high handlebars. Because they are designed to look great, they are not necessarily efficient riding machines. Another motorcycle type related to the chopper is called a “Bobber.” A Bobber is a factory bike stripped of dead weight and fairing to reduce mass and increase performance. The “bobbed” look comes from the shortening of the rear fender. Another type of cruiser is called the Power Cruiser. They have higher power levels, upgraded brakes and suspension, better ground clearance, and premium surface finishes. Choppers are great touring bikes. 

Average Price: $15,000-$50,000

Sportbike

Sportbikes are designed to emphasize top speed, acceleration, braking, handling, and grip. They sacrifice comfort and fuel economy to achieve high performance. Engines like the inline-four, v-twin, and the parallel v-twin give this motorcycle the power it needs for its purpose. 

A sportbike needs a braking system that’s both light and powerful. Most sportbikes are heavy and are designed to force the rider into a prone position. At high speed, this motorcycle is light, but it’s heavy and can cause fatigue at a slower speed. As such, a sportbike is not advisable as a daily urban commuter, especially if you have stop-and-go traffic in your city. Sportbikes can either be used as street or racing bikes (if modified).

Average Price: $5000-$30,000

 Touring

Motorcycles designed for touring are intended to be ridden long distances. They have large displacement engines, big fuel tanks, wide fairings, wind protection, spacious legroom, luggage space, and a relaxed riding position. They can weigh anywhere between 850 to 1400 lbs, fully loaded with rider and gear.

Sport-touring motorcycles combine the features of sportbikes with those of touring motorcycles. Although it has the power and features of a sportbike, the riding position is not aggressive, allowing for a comfortable long-distance ride. 

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Average Price: $18,000-$30,000

Dual-sport  

They are designed to be used on the street and for dirt riding. The chassis is typically patterned after a dirt bike; they have lights, mirrors, signal lights, and instruments that allow them to be used on public roads, hence the name “dual-sport.”

Average Price: $6000-$17,000

Off-Road

Also called dirt bikes, this motorcycle is specially designed for rough terrain and is ideal for competitive racing such as motocross, enduro, rallies, trials, and track racing

Average Price: $5000-$10,000

Scooters and underbones

Scooter engines are small (50 to 800 cc) and have an enclosed fairing that makes them cleaner to look at and quieter than your typical motorcycle. Scooters nowadays have automatic clutches and continuously variable transmission (CVT). They are considered the twist-and-go type of ride and are a descendant of the Honda Super Cub. This type of motorcycle is great for filtering thru city traffic and even longer rides.

Average Price: $2,000-$8000

Brand new Or Second Hand

Buying a second-hand motorcycle is practical and money-saving, that is if you find a unit without any hidden issues. However, many reputable dealers or private sellers with positive reviews can give you excellent deals on a used motorcycle. The key here is to do the due diligence and do some research. Another possible source of a good deal is Facebook’s Marketplace or the good old Craigslist. 

What to consider when buying a used motorcycle:

  • Before you go looking at motorcycles, find out what the Kelly Blue Book value is for the one you want.
  • Get the average price for this model so you know you’re paying a fair deal.
  • The bike should have a title, and the seller should be ready to give you the original paperwork.
  • Aftermarket parts should be avoided because they may depreciate the unit’s value. Purchasing a stock unit is always a good idea.

Cash or Installment

Cash is the best way to buy anything; it’s fast, painless, and you go home with the motorcycle after the transaction. By painless, I mean, you do not have to pay the interest. If you don’t have the money to buy it cash, consider whether you can afford it for the duration of its installment contract. 

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Motorcycle Buying Tip (at the dealers)

Never outrightly tell a dealer that you are paying cash. Inquire about other payment options. The dealer will give you information that will allow you to determine if you’re getting the right price. Once you know that you have a fair deal, then you can tell the dealer you’re paying cash.

Other expenses

Getting a motorcycle is just the beginning, there are other expenses that come with it. 

  • Dealer fees: there are additional fees on top of the motorcycle SRP.
  • Document fee: for processing documents (e.g., titles).
  • Delivery Fee: transportation fee from the origin to your delivery address.
  • Setup Fee: For prepping the motorcycle 
  • Sales tax as required by state
  • Insurance: liability insurance that you need to pay for. 
  • Registration, Title, Tax: government-mandated ownership fees. 
  • Safety Gear: DOT certified helmet, riding gear, boots, etc. 
  • Tools: basic tools you need to have in your garage

Conclusion 

Bikes are a great investment. It’s a matter of getting the right one for your needs. It’s a good idea to do some research before you buy something. Previously, the options were limited, but today, you can choose your perfect ride with the wide range of new bikes available. Take your time and make sure that you are getting the best deal. As always, check with your insurance company before you buy, and make sure you are fully covered. 

Good luck with your purchase, and please let us know what you intend to buy in the comments section.